DNR kills bear near site of mauling

TENNERTON — The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources killed a black bear Friday night that came within about 900 yards of the residence where an Upshur County woman was mauled recently.

The bear appeared to be an adult size bear that matched the description of the bear in the incident with Opal Gillespie, according to Natural Resources Police Officer Tanner Collins.

“It was within the same location and about the same size that matched the bear that was in the prior week’s incident,” Collins said. “That’s for everybody’s safety. We don’t want another incident to take place.”

The bear in that incident mauled Gillespie and killed one of her small dogs about 1:30 a.m. May 31 when Gillespie let her dogs outside on the back deck area at a residence on Overlook Drive, off Stoney Run, according to a previous article.

The DNR is still investigating the Gillespie incident at this time and Collins said he couldn’t comment more.

Collins said DNA samples from the bear as well as DNA samples from the attack at the Gillespie house have been sent to an outside agency and it will be that agency that performs the testing to determine if the bear is the same as the one from the attack.

As to when the DNA results will be ready, Collins said the process can take a while but did not have a time frame yet for when they will be returned.

There are still some bear traps out, according to Collins.

If someone were to see a bear in a populated area such as the sightings in Buckhannon last week, Collins said they should alert 911 and keep their distance.

For the one spotted in the area of Randolph Street last week, Collins said every time it saw a person it kept running away.

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