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Illinois Outdoors

Police shoot cougar near Chicago

April 14, 2008 at 07:06 PM

The wandering Chicago cougar will wander no longer.

The Chicago Tribune confirmed that police officers shot a 150-pound cougar Monday after 6 p.m. in the Roscoe Village neighborhood on the North Side. The big cat was shot near North Hamilton Avenue and West Roscoe Street, according to Belmont District police, who said the cougar tried to attack officers when they attempted to contain the animal. That apparently prompted the shooting, which included as many as 10 gunshots according to witnesses.

The Tribune reported that:

Police cornered the cougar in the back yard of Ben Greene, 39, who lives on the 3400 block of North Hoyne. Greene said he heard a volley of gunfire shortly before 6 p.m. as he was bathing his 10-month-old son. His wife, Kate, ran upstairs screaming with their 3-year-old son, and they all took cover in a back room.

“At first I’m thinking there’s a gun battle in the street,” said Greene, who owns a trucking company.

As the shots stopped Greene heard the police yelling, “We got him! We got him!”

Click here to read the entire Tribune story.

Police did not immediately discuss the condition of the cougar, but in a video shown on the Web site of Chicago television station WLS ABC Channel 7, officers stood around what appeared to be a dead cougar in an alley.

WBBM Newsradio 780 quoted a neighbor saying that she saw a cougar running down the street, through a neighbor’s property and into an alley where police shot several times.

Cougar sightings have been reported for the past two weeks since a big cat was first spotted in North Chicago and then Round Lake Park. On Sunday, reports shifted to Wilmette.

Wilmette police received calls from four residents on Sunday morning claiming they’d spotted an animal thought to be a cougar near a Chicago Transit Authority station.

The last cougar found in Illinois was in December of 2004 in Mercer County near New Boston. It was found already dead, apparently shot with an arrow. Another cougar was found dead after it was hit by a train in Randolph County near Chester in July of 2000. Prior to 2000, the last verified record of a cougar in Illinois was from Alexander County in 1862.

Your CommentsComments :: Terms :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

This is no wild cougar thats for sure. Some dope released it after raising it in captivity.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/14 at 08:53 PM

Ed…How would you know this? There are wild cougars in IL…

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/14 at 09:02 PM

this is bullshit. now cops shoot wild cogers, not killers.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/14 at 10:14 PM

You can’t blame the police.  They were in a real “catch 22” situation - damned if they did and damned if they didn’t.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/14 at 10:23 PM

Honestly…who can say they wouldn’t have done the same thing?...facing the same situation!...If nothing else it establishes proof…if a cougar can live in the suburbs of Chicago, why cant they survive in central Illinois.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/15 at 05:19 AM

Believe it or not Dan, Chicago PD does not regularly arm themselves with tranquilizer guns!
Ideally, animal control could have sedated the animal, but there was no guarantee they would have arrived in time to prevent the animal from escaping, or from someone getting hurt.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/15 at 12:00 PM

It will be interesting to see if this cougar has been raised by a human or it originates from a wild population.  You have to remember back to the days when coyotes first started being seen in populated areas.  People just did not believe it, now it is a everyday occurance.  Food comes easy in higher populated areas.  Doesn’t take long for an animal to figure out where easy pickins are.  I am sure cougars are moving east.  How many times have we heard these stories over the past few years.  My only question is “think of how many game scouting cameras are out there”  How come we don’t see more pictures of cougars?  All of us should remember the wolves shot north of Lacon.  Most of us thought they had been “released by someone”.  Wasn’t true.
Came from the Michigan area.  After that I now keep a somewhat open mind.  Its just too bad this cougar didn’t end up at Blago’s house to eat him!!!!!!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/15 at 02:37 PM

You can see a video of the whole thing on  It’s pretty crazy—it walks right behind a cop and he doesn’t even know it’s there.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 04/15 at 03:19 PM

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