FRANKLIN COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — Two Franklin County residents got an early morning wake up call after a large bear broke into their home.
On July 17, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office received a distress call that a black bear was inside of a home in neighborhood of Alligator Point.
“Deputy was dispatched and apparently, we don’t how long the bear had been in there, and it was a pretty large bear from the looks of it maybe two to three hundred pounds maybe more,” said AJ Smith, Franklin County Sheriff.
According to the incident report, when Deputy John Nunez arrived on the scene, Jim Saundersen, the homeowner, was outside. He told the deputy that his 95-year-old mother with Alzheimers was still inside with the bear.
Deputy Nunez noticed an elderly woman standing in the room and then and heard a disturbance in the kitchen, the incident report said.
“He saw the bear in the same room with her and felt like her life was in danger, so he shot the bear through the window,” Sheriff Smith said.
The incident report said that deputy Nunez circled the home and then fired at the bear once through the front door to keep it away from the woman who was 10-12 feet away. He then headed to the back door where he entered the home and was able to move the woman to safety.
After securing the woman, Nunez and the elderly woman exited the home and awaited the assistance of the Florida Fish and Wild Life Conservation and Commission officer to arrive.
After FWC officer, Hartzog arrived, Nunez said he and Hartzog went looking for the bear who was found in the bedroom, still alive.
When Hartzog felt threatened by the bear, he fired eight rounds of ammunition into the bear until it died, the incident report said.
“We’re having a lot of problems with bears in residential areas where people live, it is a huge problem,” Sheriff Smith said.
The FWC said if a bear presents risky behavior to a community, they will attempt to capture and kill the animal.
They said the population for the 11 county area is over 1,000 bears.