Fish and Game chief who killed mountain lion faces packed meeting
Masses of people and additional security have packed the California Fish and Game Commission’s monthly meeting in Riverside to both protest and show support for the commission president who killed and ate a mountain lion in Idaho.
Commission President Daniel W. Richards of Upland became a controversial figure when he sent a photo of himself smiling with a dead mountain lion to a popular hunting website after legally killing it on a trip to Idaho. He later said during a radio interview that the lion meat tasted “like pork loin.”
His actions drew ire from Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and Assemblyman Ben Hueso (D-Logan Heights) who called for Richards' ouster as commission president. Hunting mountain lions has been outlawed in California, where regulations regarding the cats are overseen by the commission.
"Unfortunately, recent events make it clear that you cannot continue in any capacity on the commission," Newsom wrote to Richards last week.
Richards meanwhile said he had never proposed to repeal the ban on sport hunting of mountain lions in California, and there was “zero” chance he would resign his position as president.
The meeting was scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday and includes a public forum.
-- Matt Stevens and Phil Willon in Riverside
Photo: This picture of Daniel W. Richards appeared on the website of Western Outdoor News, which quoted him as saying he'd shot a mountain lion and that "I'm glad it's legal in Idaho." Credit: Western Outdoor News