Bear euthanized after attacking man inside home near Aspen

Nation/World

A 54-year-old man was attacked by a bear inside a home near Aspen Friday morning, according to KTLA sister station KDVR in Denver.

The homeowner heard noises in his Castle Creek neighborhood home around 1:30 a.m. He encountered the bear, which swiped at him with a paw, resulting in severe head and neck lacerations, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers said.

The man was taken to the hospital, then transferred to a level-one trauma center in Grand Junction. He underwent surgery. The victim is stable and the injuries are not life-threatening at this point, according to CPW.

Wildlife officials could not yet say whether anyone else was home at the time of the attack.  

CPW said it used dogs to track down the bear, which went into a mine shaft. The animal was euthanized due to the nature of the incident, officials said.

The bear matches the description of a bear that has been frequenting the Castle Creek neighborhood for several days. It may also be the same bear that has been reported for getting into trash in the area for the past couple of years. Past attempts to haze or trap and relocate the bear have been unsuccessful.

This is the first bear attack in Aspen this year. In 2019, wildlife officers responded to three bear-human attacks in the Aspen area. 

Wildlife managers will conduct further investigation.

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