Live Ammo Not Rubber Bullets Used on Bear
Friday night a resident of Tahoe Shores Mobile Home Park in Stateline, California heard some noises in his garage. One bear was ripping stuff apart in his garage, while two more were outside. He called the Douglas County Sheriff's office, who responded around 10 pm.
They worked on scaring off the bears with noise and lights. One of the three ran off, the other two treed themselves in the mobile home park. The deputies responding had wildlife control guns, loaded with rubber projectile rounds.
In most cases the wildlife control guns are loaded with two rubber projectile rounds, followed by two rifled slugs. The two look very similar. The reasoning behind this, is in case the wildlife being shot at responds by charging the deputies instead of running off.
One of the deputies shot one rubber round at one of the bears in the tree, nothing. The second deputy shot another round, nothing. The second deputy shot again, this time it was not a rubber projectile, but a rifled slug.
It was a dark night, the deputy made a mistake and feels terrible. The rifled slug and the rubber projectile look very similar and he assumed he had another rubber round in there.
The department is reviewing its policy regarding its response to bear calls and looking at any additional training measures that could prevent a similar situation from happening in the future, Douglas County Sheriff's Sgt. Jim Halsey said.
The residents who had the bear in the garage are in the process of an eviction. The director of properties at Tahoe Shores says they were improperly storing a month's worth of garbage in the garage and had attracted the bear. From Tahoe Daily Tribune.