Officials in Texas are currently debating on whether the death of a 28-year-old man was caused by a mountain lion or something else.
The body of Christopher Allen Whiteley was found in a wooded area on Thursday after those concerned with his wellbeing, contacted the Hood County Sheriffs Office because they could not get in contact him.
Preliminary results from Whiteley’s autopsy determined that the 28-year-old died from a wild animal attack, which authorities claimed was a mountain lion.
The sheriff’s office then enlisted the help of a trapper who specializes in the trapping mountain lions to assist in the search for the animal, and that’s when questions about Whiteley’s death began to arise.
According to the two agencies that specialize in the capture and removal of wild animals, the attack was not caused by a mountain lion:
” There is not any evidence of a predatory attack by a mountain lion at the location where the victim was found,” the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department said in a news release on Sunday.
The Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services trapper also found no evidence of a mountain lion attack during their investigation.
In addition to the agencies finds, officials say that there have been no confirmed fatal attacks by mountain lions in the state of Texas and that the last confirmed sighting of a mountain lion was about 100 miles from Dallas.
” Fatal mountain lion attacks on people are extremely rare,” the news release continued. ” In the past 100 years, there are fewer than 30 confirmed deaths due to mountain lion attacks nationwide.”
Despite those finds, the Hood County Sheriffs Office says they are standing behind the preliminary findings of the Medical Examiner’s Office.
The sheriffs office is continuing to gather evidence from the scene and are now talking to residents who may have spotted a mountain lion on the area.
Regardless of the ongoing dilemma, authorities are urging those in the area to be mindful of their surrounding and to keep a watchful eye on young children and animals at night.