A coyote hanging out at Francis Cardinal George's mansion got away from Chicago Animal Control on Monday. Repeatedly:
The wild animal played hide-and-seek with police officers and later the Animal Care and Control team for more than five hours. The last three hours were spent chasing the coyote back and forth from baseball fields at Lake Shore Drive and LaSalle Street to the yard of Cardinal Francis George's residence at North Avenue and State Street.
The coyote seems to have sought sanctuary recently on the mansion's grounds. The nuns at the residence said they were not bothered by the coyote, which they say gets rid of the rabbits that ravage their garden.
Yes, they get rid of rabbits, which have surged in Chicago since West Nile started killing all the crows a few years ago. (Crows eat rabbit kits as hors d'oeuvres.) So why bother the coyote?
"It doesn't make sense," bystander Mahlon Canete said after the coyote whipped past him. "They're chasing him with a van. That was embarrassing."
Shortly after the officers abandoned their hunt Monday, the coyote made its way to the middle of the cardinal's yard and lay down for the first time in hours.