Bear shooter should be prosecuted

To the Editor:

On Monday June 2, a man shot and killed a bear because she supposedly tried to attack him on his porch in Maggie Valley. He also said that she had been in his bird feeder and then retracted that statement.

Well sir, which is it? Was she in your yard at the bird feeder or on your porch trying to attack you? 

This was a she bear that had three cubs. She was shot dead with a double odd buck shotgun. This man is not being charged. Two cubs were caught and now have to be raised, and the third cub is still at large and more than likely will not survive. How sad this is for all three cubs. Even sadder that their momma was shot and killed for being hungry and doing her best to provide for them. 

These three cubs now have a slim to none chance for survival. The worst thing is that this man is not being held accountable for his actions. He should be charged and held accountable ethically and financially for all four bears. 

Had this man just left them alone, because he was in their world, they would have sauntered off in search of more food. Why did he not just shoot in the air? They would have run off. Furthermore, why did he not contact our Wildlife Resource officers and advise them he had a nuisance bear with three cubs as a first alternative as opposed to taking matters into his own hands? 

Would this man shoot a fisherman for being in the creek fishing? Had it been an elk he killed for being in his yard, he would be in a world of trouble. The Wildlife Resource officers and our federal government would be all over a person in that situation. The bears were here before the elk. Why should one be protected and not the other? What is the difference between bear, elk, deer, or turkey? There is none. Our officials make the rules. They should be applied to everyone.

My biggest problem with this situation is that had this been one of our local hunters, which I am, we would have been arrested and held ethically and financially responsible for all four bears. What is the difference with this man? A bear was shot and killed out of season, and this man is getting away with it. He is equally responsible for his actions as we would be had it been a local hunter that shot and killed a bear out of season. 

Let us make our voices heard and insist on this man being held accountable for his actions, or incidents like this will only give permission to every outsider who moves in to our area to kill a bear without any consequences for being on their porches or getting into their bird feeders.

Let us insist to our Wildlife Resource officers that this man be held ethically and financially responsible for his actions, or lack thereof, as we would be.

Apparently there is no difference between an individual with a license to hunt and an individual who does not want a bear on their private property.

Catherine Miller


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