bear cub had to be euthanized after accidentally being injured by officer

Baby bear that wandered into Maryland neighborhood shot and killed

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In a disturbing situation on Saturday afternoon in Hartford County, Maryland, a baby bear that had wandered into a residential neighborhood was shot and killed by police.

Witnesses were shocked and questioned why police did not notify Animal Control or the Department of Natural Resources to get involved. A local resident expressed her horrifying experience on social media.

“I just witnessed the most horrifying unjust killing of this baby bear,” Dawn Cowhey wrote on her Facebook page. “Right outback my condo building. Why wasn’t DNR called?!!! Why didn’t Animal Control in Hartford County get involved?! Why didn’t they tase the bear till DNR or Animal Control could come and sedate this poor life and relocate?!! Questions and absolutely felt helpless and could not protect this life as it was going down. I should have screamed louder… I should have screamed louder!!!!”
A press release from the Havre de Grace Police followed with an account of the situation. According to the police, the DNR had been contacted, but were unable to respond.

For Immediate Release
Contact: Sgt. Daniel Petz, Public Information Officer, (410) 939-2121

On Saturday, June 20th, 2020, officers from the Havre de Grace Police Department were dispatched to the 700 blocks of Union Avenue for a bear on residential property. Officers responded to the area, and were unable to locate the bear who was last seen going towards the area of the hospital. Officers launched a search for the bear and alerted citizens in the area that a bear was sighted and to take appropriate actions. Officers eventually found the bear in the area of the promenade and had to euthanize the bear due to the high potential for a physical encounter with humans.

We understand this was a very unfortunate event, but officers made this decision based on the overwhelming concern for public safety.

As this investigation is still ongoing, no further information will be released at this time.

For additional information regarding this release, or any others, please contact the Office of Media relations at 410-939-2121.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources does not remove and relocate bears unless they have caused a conflict with humans or have shown signs of aggression. It is believed this baby black bear had been looking for food.

Bear attacks are extremely rare, and a bear showing up in a residential area doesn’t necessarily mean the animal is a threat. A general rule is never leave any food outside, make sure garbage cans are securely shut and remove bird feeders. If the bear appears aggressive, stay indoors and contact the DNA Bear hotline at 410.260.8888.

If you see a bear and it is not bothering anyone, keep your distance; take some photos, but never approach and stay at least 200-300 feet away from him. Be respectful of wildlife – they want to live too.

Rest in peace little one.

(Photo: Dawn Lucajko Cowhey FB screenshot)

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6 replies
  1. Bunny Peters says:

    This is sad beyond words….. why couldn’t animal control collect the bear and deliver him to a wildlife rescue group for eventual return to the wild? I fail to understand why it was necessary to kill this baby……

    Reply
  2. Barkley's Mom says:

    I am so sick of innocent animals being shot and killed by gun happy police officers. I want to support the ones who are charged with protecting and serving but when you see a needless killing like this it is very hard. While the police are being looked at regarding Black Lives Matter, how about taking a look at the animals whose lives they see to have little regard for also!

    Reply

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