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Crafty Bruin Breaks Into Vehicles


By: Kris Hazelton

The bears are now trying to really ‘beef’ up for the winter months and are looking for any opportunity and/or food source to fill their bellies so they can survive the long, cold winter months ahead.

At their home, off of Fall River Road, the Hill-Wilkerson family woke up last week thinking their cars had been vandalized. Courtney looked outside and the doors of both their pickup truck and their Dodge Caravan were wide open. Upon closer investigation, she discovered her purse was missing as well.

Courtney called the police, thinking they had been victims of a burglary.
They checked both vehicles and found a big mess inside and around the vehicles. Items in the cars were strewn about and dirt was found all over the interior  of both cars.

Officer Shaun Bledsoe responded to the scene and upon inspecting the contents of the car, noticed chewed up Teddy Graham wrappers, Ritz Bits and an oatmeal packet and… a bear paw print on the sliding door of their Dodge Caravan.

The couple has two children and had just gone to a soccer game and had left the small remnants of the soccer team snacks in the car overnight.

Officer Bledsoe told Courtney and Kelly that it was a bear that had opened the doors of their vehicles to get the food left inside of the vehicles, and also took Courtney’s purse.
(Is it ironic that a bear might have gotten in and eaten TEDDY grahams??)

Courtney said, “The bear just opened the doors, took food out and sat out in our yard and had a picnic.” The amazing part of this report is that the bear actually opened the doors, without doing any damage.
Courtney was amazed and said, “There was no human intervention here…. just pure, very smart, very hungry bear.”

Everything has been recovered, including Courtney’s purse and a cell phone… which looks like it suffered a bear bite.

This fall, it is important for everyone to make sure if their vehicles are parked outside, to take any remaining food items out of the vehicle before leaving them for the night. A bear in the quest of fattening up for the winter, will go for anything that smells like food, even car deodorizers or a stick of lip balm can attract these hungry bears.

Thank you Courtney and Kelly for helping to remind us of how to be Bear Aware so we can all co-exist peacefully with the bears.

© 2014 Estes Park News, Inc

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