Police are currently investigating several reports of a lion in Milwaukee. It’s been the talk of the town and the web lately, even earning its own Twitter hashtag: #MKElion. Despite rumors of the cat roaming the city, reports aren’t entirely clear whether there was really a lion or not.
The large feline was caught on video as it wandered through several backyards near Palmer Street and Garfield Avenue on Monday. The video footage is grainy, and it’s difficult to see exactly what the animal is, but it looks very much like a lion.
Residents in the area were surprised at the visitor that was reported just after 4 p.m. on Monday. The video was taken in the backyard of Kelly Brooks, who reports as follows.
“It was the neighbors saying, ‘Hey, Kelly, there’s a large animal in your backyard, and it looks like a lion.”
He didn’t seem too bothered by it, since he replied as follows.
“So I said, ‘Well, I’ll just go tell that lion to get out of my backyard.’ “
However, there isn’t much to back up story of a lion in Milwaukee other than a few testimonials and the grainy video. Officers reported combing the area for several hours without seeing any signs of the feline. They did see some evidence of large paw prints in Brooks’ backyard, but there’s no telling yet if those paw prints belong to a lion or to a large house cat.
“It’s certainly a lion-ish creature, but we have not had any confirmed sightings by anyone since then,” Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn reported on Tuesday.
The video was analyzed by the curator of conservation and animal care at the Racine Zoo, Theresa Donarksi.
“Definitely a large cat I would say. To me, it looks pretty much like a mountain lion or a cougar to me… It’s got a very muscular body, and it walks and is walking just like I see our lions walking and things like that.”
However, Donarski admitted that it was very difficult to tell exactly what the animal was. She went on to say as follows.
“These are animals that don’t enjoy being around people. They’re going to be coming out in the evening hours, hunting in the night time.”
In other words, the odds of seeing the animal again are very slim, but Police Chief Flynn urges Milwaukee citizens as follows.
“Obviously, if the public sees anything, please call, but I don’t want a general sense of panic out there either, because we have not had a sighting since then.”
The last thing Milwaukee residents want is someone to get hurt by the notoriously dangerous animal if it does exist. If you ‘re anywhere near the Milwaukee area, keep your eyes peeled. You might just see a rare sight: a lion in Milwaukee.
[Image via WISN]