August 27, 2007
On this date at about 3:30 a.m., El Dorado Sheriff’s Deputies from the Lake Tahoe Station responded to a call for service in the Christmas Valley area.
The caller stated that a bear was inside his residence and that he and his dog were barricaded in a bedroom. According to the caller, the bear entered through the sliding rear door and was still in the kitchen. The first deputy to arrive entered the residence
through the front door and used proven tactics of stomping his feet and yelling in an effort to encourage the bear to leave through the open sliding door.
Instead of leaving, the bear charged the deputy. The deputy shot twice at the bear in self-defense. After the initial shots were fired, the bear turned and headed out the open sliding door only to turn again and charge the deputy once more. The deputy fired one more shot at the bear after which the bear left the residence.
With additional responding Sheriff’s personnel arriving on the scene, a search was conducted. The mortally wounded bear was located in the backyard of the residence and destroyed. The bear was large for a female and estimated at approximately 300 pounds. It was later learned that two small bear cubs were also at the residence. This may explain the bear’s unusual aggressive behavior. The cubs were safely captured and are currently in the care and custody of Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Inc.
While the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office regrets being placed into a position of taking lethal action upon wildlife, we would like to utilize this opportunity to remind locals and visitors that the Tahoe Basin is bear habitat. We encourage responsible activities to discourage bears from feeding in or about neighborhoods. For more information on bear behavior please contact
the Bear League at telephone number (530) 525-7297.