Woman Jailed for Close Encounter With Grizzly and Cubs at Yellowstone

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U.S.|Woman Jailed for Close Encounter With Grizzly and Cubs astatine Yellowstone


The pistillate was sentenced to 4 days successful jailhouse and was barred from the parkland for a twelvemonth for not yielding abstraction to the carnivore and 3 cubs.

A grizzly carnivore  with 2  cubs astatine  Yellowstone National Park successful  2015. The parkland  has regulations that prohibit visitors from getting excessively  adjacent  to ample  wildlife. 
Credit...Jim Urquhart/Reuters

Jesus Jiménez

Published Oct. 7, 2021Updated Oct. 8, 2021, 9:05 a.m. ET

An Illinois pistillate volition walk 4 days successful jailhouse and volition beryllium barred for a twelvemonth from Yellowstone National Park for not moving retired of the mode of a grizzly carnivore and 3 cubs portion visiting the parkland successful May.

The woman, Samantha Dehring, 25, of Carol Stream, Ill., pleaded blameworthy to “willfully remaining, approaching, and photographing wildlife wrong 100 yards,” Bob Murray, the acting U.S. lawyer for the District of Wyoming, announced connected Thursday.

While visiting Roaring Mountain astatine Yellowstone connected May 10, Ms. Dehring and others saw a grizzly carnivore with 3 cubs, according to the U.S. attorney’s office. Others astatine the parkland backed distant from the bears and returned to their vehicles, but Ms. Dehring did not retreat and took pictures of the animals, the U.S. attorney’s bureau said.

Ms. Dehring appeared connected Wednesday earlier U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark L. Carman, who sentenced her to the little jailhouse word and issued the parkland ban. She was besides sentenced to 1 twelvemonth of unsupervised probation and was ordered to wage a $1,000 good and marque a $1,000 assemblage work outgo to the Yellowstone Forever Wildlife Protection Fund.

“The parkland is not a zoo wherever animals tin beryllium viewed wrong the information of a fenced enclosure,” Mr. Murray said successful a statement, adding that portion successful their earthy habitat, chaotic animals volition respond erstwhile they consciousness threatened.

“Approaching a sow grizzly with cubs is perfectly foolish,” helium said. “Here, axenic luck is wherefore Dehring is simply a transgression suspect and not a mauled tourist.”

Ms. Dehring besides faced different number of feeding, touching, teasing, frightening oregon intentionally disturbing wildlife, but it was dismissed.

In a statement, Ethan Morris, a lawyer representing Ms. Dehring, said she had “showed large remorse and regret for her actions passim this case.”

Mr. Morris added that Ms. Dehring had received “constant online abuse” since video of her brushwood with the bears circulated online.

“While we recognize that the tribunal indispensable nonstop a connection to deter others from violating parkland regulations, it is unfortunate that the territory attorney’s bureau chose to azygous Ms. Dehring out,” Mr. Morris said. “Nevertheless, we judge the judgement and condemnation of the tribunal and anticipation this lawsuit serves arsenic an accidental for parkland visitors and unit to instrumentality steps to forestall thing similar this from happening again.”

Ms. Dehring’s sojourn to Yellowstone came astatine a clip erstwhile radical were exploring nationalist parks astatine grounds rates. Yellowstone acceptable visitation records successful May, hosting 483,159 visitors, arsenic different fashionable parks similar Grand Canyon National Park successful Arizona and Joshua Tree National Park successful California besides drew ample crowds.

Yellowstone National Park officials declined to remark astir the arrest.

Yellowstone regulations prohibit visitors from “willfully remaining adjacent oregon approaching wildlife, including nesting birds, wrong immoderate region that disturbs oregon displaces the animal.”

Visitors are advised to enactment 25 yards from ample animals specified arsenic bison, elk, bighorn sheep, deer, moose and coyotes and astatine slightest 100 yards from bears and wolves.

In April, a 40-year-old antheral was attacked by a grizzly carnivore conscionable westbound of Yellowstone. Emergency responders arrived to assistance the man, but helium aboriginal died of his injuries.

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