SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Police say they had to issue an alert for an urban mountain lion sighting after numerous East Sacramento residents and a police officer reported sightings.
A Sacramento Alert was issued to nearly 500 East Sacramento homes just after 5 a.m. Saturday, according to the Sacramento Police Department.
The first sighting was reported to police around 1:35 a.m. Police say that the resident reported seeing what they thought was a mountain lion near 58th and M Streets. Officers soon arrived in the area where the big cat was spotted but did not find anything.
Just after 3 a.m., near 36th Street and Folsom Boulevard, another resident called police and reported that he was following a mountain lion with his car. Officers rushed over, but it wasn’t until around 4:05 a.m. that a Sacramento Police Department Lieutenant got the first confirmed sighting.
Mike Tamburelli said he was taking his dog out for an overnight walk when he come up close to the mountain lion.
“I came out on with the dog and dang gone thing jumped the street here on R Street,” Tamburelli said.
Police say that the lieutenant saw the mountain lion near 36th and R Streets. The lion reportedly jumped over a chain link fence, however, and was not seen again.
Animal Control officers, among other agencies, were alerted about the incident and the alert was eventually issued. The full text of the alert that was sent out to residents is below:
“This is the Sacramento Police Department with a large animal sighting notification in your area. Sacramento Police officers spotted a mountain lion in the area of 36th St and R St at approximately 4:00 a.m. this morning. The animal was seen jumping the fence from a residential street to the Light Rail tracks near 36th St and R St. If the animal is seen, please dial 9-1-1 immediately. Please do not attempt to approach the animal. Thank you.”
The unusual location for a mountain lion has become a big talker, but East Sacramento business owner Kara Zune said she’s not surprised.
“There’s construction everywhere. And [with] the drought, the water’s low, food’s low, and dogs and cats are easy to eat in your backyard,” Zune said.
Saturday night, Sacramento Police said that they were at the scene of another possible mountain lion sighting near 32nd and X Streets.