Cocke Co. deputy frees black bear locked inside vehicle

To free the bear, the deputy shot two 12-gauge bean bag rounds into the left rear passenger window.
To free the bear, the deputy shot two 12-gauge bean bag rounds into the left rear passenger window.
Published: Aug. 13, 2022 at 1:39 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 13, 2022 at 10:22 PM EDT
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COSBY, Tenn. (WVLT) - A Cocke County deputy responded to an unusual call this week: a bear had locked itself inside a vehicle in Cosby.

The deputy arrived at 1960 Middle Way on Wednesday to find a large black bear stuck inside a White Honda Pilot SUV, a police report obtained by WVLT News stated. Two Cosby residents called the police after they heard a car door shut and realized that a bear had jumped inside their vehicle.

While inside, the bear chewed and destroyed most of the electronics and upholstery, making it where the deputy could not unlock the doors, the report stated.

The owners of the vehicle agreed to have a window broken after becoming worried about the bear’s welfare due to the lack of air in the SUV. At that time, the report stated that they believed the bear had been inside the vehicle for over an hour.

Dispatch reportedly attempted to reach the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency multiple times but was unsuccessful.

To free the bear, the deputy shot two 12-gauge bean bag rounds into the left rear passenger window. It “cautiously” climbed out the window and ran away without apparent injuries after the window was broken, officials said.

See a bear in East Tennessee? Here’s how you can protect them. Any nuisance bear issues need to be reported to the TWRA as soon as possible.

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