Employees charged in mountain lion poaching still working at Colossal Cave

Maggie Vespa

Employees charged in mountain lion poaching still working at Colossal Cave

CREATED Jul. 18, 2013

PIMA COUNTY, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - It was a majestic animal, ruthlessly gunned down in a county park by, authorities say, a pair working in that park.

You might think such a cruel killing would be enough to get you canned from that job.
 
Well, stay tuned.
 
Wednesday 9OYS brought you the names of the three men cited, and now charged, with this poaching.
 
Two of them work at Colossal Cave Mountain Park.
 
Now, a source within the park's management tells us, those men are still on staff.
 
That source asked to remain anonymous.
 
The story that struck chords across southeastern Arizona.
 
"Appalled.  You know there was no call for it," said one man, when the news first broke.
 
Those who hit the park, expecting to see their beloved wildlife, are speaking out.
 
"To hear the folks that did that work here..." said a Phoenix native visiting the park.  "This is the first time I brought my daughter here, so to hear that is really sad."
 
"I think they should do something about it and investigate a little more about what type of employees they get," said one woman.
 
The employees under fire are Dailey, a subcontractor for the park and LeFevre, a maintenance worker employed by a non-profit contracted through county.
 
Authorities say they shot the mountain lion several times with a .22 calliber rifle.
 
Dailey has since told other local media the killing was legal.
 
Game and Fish officials say not so.
 
"I can assure you he was in no personal threat of being harmed by that mountain lion," said public information officer Mark Hart.
 
They say investigators are working around the clock.
 
"We take these cases very seriously, and we don't really make a distinction whether it's a charismatic creature or like a javelina, which isn't quite as charismatic.  We pursue them vigorously," said Hart.
 
It's a pursuit of those who chose, they say, to needlessly and brutally hunt and kill one of the park's prized creatures.
 
Colossal Cave Mountain Park is run by Pima County, but county officials say staffing decisions like this are up to park directors.
 
9OYS reached out to them and to Richard Dailey Thursday, but we have yet to hear back.

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