U.S. Doctor Pays $50,000 to Poachers; Kills the Most Famous Lion in Africa

Dr Walter Palmer

Dr Walter Palmer

An American dentist who shot and killed what was probably the most famous lion on earth, has admitted that he took part in the hunt, which included beheading and skinning the magnificent animal at Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park as a trophy.


“It’s an activity I love.”


Cecil the Lion, Dead at age 13

Cecil the Lion, Dead at age 13

Doctor Walter James Palmer, who operates the River Bluff Dental clinic in the town of Bloomington Minnesota, insists he had all the right permits for shooting a lion. He states he had no idea this particular lion was on a “protected status” list or that he was Cecil, considered a national treasure in Zimbabwe. But a subject he does not address is that Cecil, an imposing, extremely rare black-mane cat, was well-known by his guides and easily recognizable by pretty much every game hunter, even from a distance. And because he was wearing a GPS tracking collar, Zimbabwe wildlife authorities now know that Cecil was illegally lured outside the park’s borders by bloody meat dragged behind a truck after dark. He was then shot by Palmer with a crossbow. Luring any animal outside a sanctuary is illegal.

Seriously wounded, Cecil wandered the plains for nearly two days before Palmer and his guides found him and shot him with a high-powered rifle outside the park. The killing and brutal beheading have caused outrage in Zimbabwe and in fact worldwide.

Dr Walter Palmer having fun

Dr Walter Palmer having fun

Investigators believe the lion was killed on July 1st but the carcass was not discovered until a few days later. Police in Zimbabwe have since arrested two men over the death of Cecil, the country’s most beloved tourist attraction, and say the American Palmer may also face felony poaching charges.

Emmanuel Fundira, President of Safari’s Operators Association, confirmed that “Doctor Walter Palmer of the U.S. is wanted in connection of the death of Cecil.”

Palmer states he did not learn the lion’s identity until the end of the hunt; that he depended on professional guides to find a lion and obtain the necessary permits

The men could be sentenced to 15 years in prison in Zimbabwe if they are found guilty.
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Here’s another look at this despicable case:
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4 thoughts on “U.S. Doctor Pays $50,000 to Poachers; Kills the Most Famous Lion in Africa

  1. Ione says:

    Thank you for reporting on this. In another article I read it stated they the guides with Dr. Palmer tried to destroy and hide the radio transmitter collar that was on Cecil, so they knew very well he was a protected lion. I am sickened by this need to kill. Lions are close to being on the endangered list because of “humans” such as this. How many animals or people in need could $50,000 have helped? The only good thing to come from this, is Dr. Palmer will no longer be able to afford these expensive hunting trips. I doubt that will curb his need to kill though, so if I was his neighbor, I would be keeping a close eye on my pets.

    • Ione –

      Oh, I think his neighbors can relax. I suspect this fellow won’t be a local resident for very long. In the overwhelming majority of cases, when doctors get into trouble, they cross state lines and start over. They all know that when it comes to crime and medical practitioners, the typical American has the attention span of a gerbil on chocolate.

    • Leslie said this:

      “I would be upset if the locals were.”

      And our take is this: Anyone who honestly measures ethics by using the dipstick of a tepid public response to ugliness, just might have a leak in their moral brain-pan.

      In case you’ve missed it, there is one hell of a lot more going on here besides the totally gross slaughter of a marvelous animal. This lab coat loon has children, and I’m guessing you already know that school starts real soon. Can you possibly imagine the sheer horror those kids are going through right now, knowing they have to face the backlash of emotion from . . . oh, I don’t know, let’s say 500 schoolmates?

      Do yourself a valuable tutelage: Spend some time outside this country and view it for a few months as others view America. Because if you ever do, you might show your shocked face at just how much resentment there is towards the nation with the unmitigated gall to believe it is “all that.”

      Not everybody out there thinks the U.S. is the bee’s knees.

      Which is at least part of the reason things just kinda keep . . . you know . . . blowing up.

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