More Details Emerge About the Deadly California Mountain Lion Attack, Victims

California authorities released more information about the mountain lion attack over the weekend that left one man dead and his brother injured. 

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office released a series of statements on Monday, including details about the deadly incident as well as the victims’ names and a family statement. 

At the time of the incident, Taylen and Wyatt Brooks were shed antler hunting in a remote area near Georgetown, California, which is located about 50 miles northeast of Sacramento. 

According to the sheriff’s office, the brothers were walking along a road when they saw the mountain lion and it started approaching them. In response, they did what they were told to do, which was raise their hands into the air to appear larger and yell at the animal. Wyatt even threw his backpack at it, hoping the gesture would scare it away. Instead, the mountain lion attacked. 

The animal first attacked 18-year-old Wyatt, biting down on his face and taking him to the ground. As Wyatt tried to wrestle it, Taylen also started attacking it. The animal eventually released Wyatt and then charged Taylen. 

During the second attack, the mountain lion bit Taylen’s throat and took him to the ground. Wyatt, who had sustained injuries to his face and midsection, tried to get the mountain lion off of his brother and then decided to call for help. 

Brothers Taylen Brooks, 21, and Wyatt Brooks, 18, were attacked by a mountain lion on March 23, 2024, in a remote area near Georgetown, California. Image: El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office

In search of cell signal, Wyatt ran back to their parked vehicle, called 911, and then drove the vehicle to the scene of the attack. He hoped the vehicle would scare the animal, but he discovered that his brother and the mountain lion were gone. So Wyatt drove to meet with El Dorado Sheriff’s deputies, who gave him first aid until a medical team arrived and transported him to the hospital.  

Deputies began searching the area where the attack took place. They found the mountain lion near the roadway crouching over Taylen. Because they didn’t know if Taylen was alive or dead, they fired warning shots hoping to scare away the animal, which they did. Unfortunately, Taylen was dead. 

Instead of following the mountain lion, the deputies opted to remove the 21-year-old’s body. Then, the California Department of Fish & Wildlife along with a local trapper arrived and they tracked the mountain lion for approximately 100 yards. CDFW said they euthanized it and confirmed through DNA testing that it was in fact the animal that attacked the brothers. 

Authorities say Wyatt, who was described as a student at the Mt. Adams Fire Academy and avid bowhunter and outdoorsman, will need reconstructive surgery due to the lacerations to his face and neck.

In a statement, the family said they were thankful that Wyatt survived and they were devastated at the loss of Taylen, who was described as a fisherman, outdoorsman, and guitarist who worked with his father painting houses. 

“A brother is a friend given by nature. These two brothers were driven by nature,” the family said in a statement and asked that the public respect their privacy during this difficult time. 

To support the family, the El Dorado Community Foundation set up a fund in their name. You can access the Brooks Brothers Support Fund here.
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