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A 74-year-old woman was pulling weeds al

September 20, 1997

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ A 74-year-old woman was pulling weeds along her backyard fence when she came face-to-face with a Siberian tiger.

``I was stunned. I haven’t been in my back yard since,″ Bonnie Wampler said.

And that’s how a cat fight began in Greg Anderson’s once-quiet city neighborhood.

Prompted by complaints from neighbors, the state said it will revoke Anderson’s permit allowing him to keep 120-pound Kulia the tiger in his back yard as long as she remains in her cage.

Anderson, 28, admitted he has let his exotic pet romp in his yard several times since he got her eight months ago, but he said it won’t happen again.

He acknowledged, ``Maybe the city isn’t the best place″ for 9-month-old Kulia.

The city is also trying to send Kulia packing, though Anderson promised to fight, saying he hasn’t been given a chance to defend himself.

Anderson’s neighbors became aware of Kulia after the elderly woman was startled. The 6-foot fence that divides their property is hardly a hurdle for Kulia, who will weigh 400 to 450 pounds when fully grown.

Anne and David Hatch, whose back yard is just a tiger’s leap away from Anderson’s, won’t let their children, ages 5 and 3, play outside.

``You’re basically asking me to trust this man with the lives of my children,″ Ms. Hatch said.

Like Ms. Wampler, the Hatches also saw the tiger running loose and notified authorities.

Anderson lives just down the road from Jackson Middle School, with 800 students, including some who walk past his house.

``The major thing that I’m concerned about is the safety and well-being of the students,″ Principal Allan Luethe said. ``If that tiger were running loose in his back yard, he could go over that fence in a heartbeat.″

The City Council said Sept. 10 it will seek to ban wild pets in the city. The state told Anderson on Sept. 15 that it will revoke his permit.

Multnomah County was already drafting an ordinance banning dangerous exotic animals but is now working to get it on the books faster.

Siberian tigers are an endangered species, with about 430 left in the wild.

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