300-pound black bear that bit Longwood woman on butt captured and euthanized; cub sent to sanctuary

LONGWOOD, Fla. -- The 14-month-old Florida black bear cub whose mother attacked a Longwood resident March 16, will spend the rest of its life at EARS wildlife sanctuary near Citra in Marion County. The mother bear, hower, was put down Thursday whwn both were captured.

"We had to make the difficult decision to put the bear down because human safety is our first priority and we couldn't take the risk that she would injure someone else," said Joy Hill, spokeswoman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commissioon.

FWC public information coordinator. Relocating or putting her in captivity was not an option. If she was relocated she would likely repeat the same behavior somewhere else, and placing wild adult bears in captivity has proven unsuccessful."

FWC biologists captured the young male bear Thursday morning in a trap set near the dumpster at Camden Cove Apartments on Sabal Palm Drive in Longwood where the cub and his mother had been eating garbage.

Biologists were also able to capture the offending female bear after shooting her with a tranquilizer dart near the trap. After tranquilizing her, they loaded her into a second bear trap and took her off site to be disposed of.

The 300-pound bear bit Terri Gurley on her behind while she was taking out the trash with her dog. Her cub was right behind her as they were foraging in the trash for food.

The 57-year-old woman told WKMG Local 6 her dog laskhed out at the mother bear and she was knocked over and the fracas. While trying to get up, she got bit on the butt.

"The dog was trying to go at her and I'm pulling her back, trying to get away," Gurley told the Orlando TV station. "I was walking backwards and I tripped and I fell, hitting my head."All I can think of is how terrifying it is to look and it's right there."

"The dog was trying to go at her and I'm pulling her back, trying to get away," Gurley told the Orlando TV station. "I was walking backwards and I tripped and I fell, hitting my head."All I can think of is how terrifying it is to look and it's right there."

Gurley's screams frightened off the bears and neighbors called 9-1-1. She was treated at a local hospital for four puncture wounds and released. 

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Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most experienced reporters, having amassed dozens of journalism-industry awards. Frederick is enrolled online at Full Sail University in Winter Garden, FL, where he's a third of the way though the Master of Arts program in New Media Journalism. His graduation will be in March 2018.