Bear attacks boy in Connecticut backyard

MORRIS, Conn. (HPD) — A bear attacked a 10-year-old boy in the backyard of the boy’s grandparents in Connecticut and tried to drag him away, but police managed to shoot the animal dead, authorities said.

The 250-pound (113-kilogram) black bear attacked the boy around 11 am Sunday in Morris, Connecticut, the local department of environmental protection said.

The minor was taken to the hospital, but his injuries are not serious.

James Butler, the boy’s grandfather, told the Waterbury Republican-American newspaper that his grandson was playing near a trampoline when the bear emerged from a forest behind the house.

“I heard him yell ‘a bear!’ and I saw that the bear had his leg in his teeth and was trying to take him away,” Butler said.

The grandfather, who uses a wheelchair, rolled towards the bear and threw a metal bar at its head, he told the newspaper.

The bear let go of the boy, but then grabbed him again and tried to turn him onto his back, the grandfather said.

A neighbor, alerted by the boy’s screams, came running and chased the bear away by screaming and brandishing a metal pipe, Butler said.

Once Butler and his grandson were safely inside the house, the animal returned, climbed up a wheelchair ramp and watched them from the gate, Butler said.

“We thought he was going to go through the fence, there’s no question he was a huge threat,” Butler said.

The police arrived shortly after and killed the animal.

Butler and his wife Christina Anderson, who was inside the home during the incident, said the boy suffered a puncture to his thigh, bites to his foot and ankle and scratches to his back.

Biologist Jenny Dixon explained that the risks of close encounters between humans and bears are increasing as the population of bears in Connecticut increases and they begin to get used to human foods and customs.

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