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State Fish & Game Commission Chief Under Fire For Mountain Lion Killing

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Daniel Richards, mountain lion, Fish and Game Commission

California Fish and Game Commission President Daniel Richards poses with a mountain lion he killed during a recent hunting expedition. (Western Outdoor News)

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SACRAMENTO (CBS/AP) — California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom has urged the president of the state’s Fish and Game Commission to resign in a flap over the killing of a mountain lion.

Commission president Daniel Richards shot the cougar during an Idaho hunting expedition and a photograph of him grinning and lifting the bloody carcass has been circulating on the Internet.

>>Letter From Richards On Mountain Lion Hunting (.pdf)

Conservationists and animal lovers are outraged.

Newsom on Monday joined 40 Democratic Assembly members calling for the Republican official to resign.

While legal in Idaho, hunting mountain lions has been illegal in California since voters approved Prop 117 in 1990.

The lieutenant governor wrote to Richards, saying the killing of a cougar doesn’t reflect California values and the incident is a distraction that interferes with commission issues.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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