Coyote attacks child walking with mother in Moraga

File Photo. A coyote is seen here staring towards the camera in Northern California.

A 3-year-old girl was attacked by a coyote in the East Bay near the locations where three previous coyote attacks were linked through DNA samples in December.  

The latest involved a mother and her daughter walking in Moraga near the intersection of Calle la Montana and Campolindo Drive on Tuesday. Moraga police said a coyote attacked and bit the child at about 8:30 a.m. 

"Without warning, a coyote had come up behind the child and bit the child," said Police Chief Jon King.

The mother was able to get the coyote to disengage and the two ran away, King said.

The girl was taken to a hospital for treatment that included a rabies shot, authorities said.

It’s not yet clear if this coyote is responsible for the other three attacks in the Lamorinda area, which were linked using DNA samples from victims. All three instances were within three miles from the attack on Tuesday, and one was right down the street at Campolindo High School last December.

Also in December, an employee at Diablo Foods grocery store was bit while taking a break. The same coyote bit a two-year-old boy at Moraga Commons Park back in July. 

Tests have since confirmed that the same coyote was involved in the three previous attacks in Lamorinda, said Capt. Patrick Foy of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Officials said the coyote in Tuesday's attack was last seen running north on Calle la Montana and they are reminding the public that coyotes are wild animals with unpredictable behavior. 

"Be aware of your surroundings when outdoors and, if you are followed by a coyote, make loud noises," King said. "f this fails, throw rocks in the animal’s direction. Do not leave small children or pets unattended outside. Special care should be taken at dusk and dawn when coyotes are known to be more active."