DENVILLE, N.J., July 14 (UPI) — Authorities in New Jersey said a bear fleeing police pursuit broke into a home by shattering a basement window.
Denville police were summoned to the Riverside Drive neighborhood Monday when neighbors reported a bear raiding multiple garbage cans in the area.
Bunny Bateman, the first resident to report sighting the bear, said the bear wrestled with several garbage cans before disappearing out of sight between two homes.
Police searched in the direction Bateman saw the bear fleeing and they discovered a house with a shattered basement window and a pair of bear eyes peeking out from the hole.
The bear was eventually coaxed into leaving the house through an open garage door, but it refused to leave the area.
Police said policy dictated they shoot the bear because it had broken into a home, but even after being wounded the animal refused to leave the area.
The bear headed back toward the wild after being shot a second time, this time with a rubber bullet, police said.
Capt. Paul Nigro said the bear was tracked by the New Jersey Department of Fish and Wildlife, which determined the animal’s injuries were not severe. It is expected to make a full recovery, Nigro said.
“I feel bad about it,” Bateman told WPIX-TV of the bear’s injuries, “I’m big on wildlife. I really felt bad about it. I turned it in.”