Bear Climbs Fences, Walls, Tree With Officers in Pursuit

The bear ambled around south of the 210 Freeway before a trip back to Angeles National Forest in the bed of a California Department of Fish and Wildlife pickup

By Jonathan Lloyd
|  Monday, Oct 14, 2013  |  Updated 12:50 PM PDT
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Officers followed a bear as it climbed fences, scaled walls and crossed streets in a community south of Angeles National Forest. Raw video from Friday Oct. 11, 2013.

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Officers followed a bear as it climbed fences, scaled walls and crossed streets in a community south of Angeles National Forest. Raw video from Friday Oct. 11, 2013.

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A bear was tranquilized early Friday in a Baldwin Park neighborhood after it climbed fences, walls and a tree during a pursuit involving several police patrol vehicles.

Raw Video: Bear's Neighborhood Walk | Map: CA Black Bear Range

The black bear -estimated at 275 pounds -- was reported near Ramona Boulevard and Puente Avenue (map). The location about 20 miles east of downtown Los Angeles is south of Angeles National Forest.

The bear was followed by Baldwin Park officers around the neighborhood south of the 210 Freeway as it climbed over a chain-link fence and scaled a wall, drawing protest from a homeowner's barking dog. The bear climbed a tree and officers sedated the animal as it remained perched in the branches.

The bear dropped to the ground and several officers loaded it into the bed of a California Department of Fish and Wildlife pickup. It will be transported to the Angeles National Forest.

The agency tweeted, "Lost bear in #BaldwinPark safe and sound and on a return trip to Angeles Nat'l Forest. Will have a headache but otherwise OK."

California's black bear population is at about 25,000 to 30,000, with most living in mountain areas above 3,000 feet, according to what the CA Department of Fish and Wildlife calls conservative estimates.  In 1982, the statewide bear population was estimated at between 10,000 and 15,000.

Less than 10 percent of the state's black bear population lives in the central western and southwestern California region, according to agency estimates. About half of the population resides in an area north and west of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

The Deparment of Fish and Wildlife has recorded 12 "bear attacks" since 1980. An attack is defined as "physical contact, injury or death."

The last reported attack in Los Angeles County occurred in July 2003 when a hiker was knocked down by a bear at a campsite on Pacific Crest Trail in Angeles National Forest. The hiker received minor injuries.

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