Black bear in garage
Gainesville resident Carol Cooper got quite a surprise Friday, May 24, when a black bear visited her property. Cooper, who lives just west of the Gainesville Elementary school off Highway 160, heard something making noise in the garage Friday morning and decided to investigate. When she went inside the garage, expecting to see a raccoon or other varmint, but instead she was met by this black bear hiding in a corner. Cooper called the Ozark County Sheriff’s Department, who contacted the Missouri Department of Conservation. MDC agent Jerry Kiger told the Times that a juvenile black bear with similar cinnamon-colored fur was reported to have fallen from the bluffs alongside Highway 160 near Cooper’s house the week before. A witness believed the bear had at least one broken leg from the fall and likely had internal injuries. A MDC wildlife damage biologist was responding to Cooper’s house Friday to analyze the situation and put the bear down, but the bear died before he arrived. OCSD Chief Deputy Winston Collins is pictured above with the bear after its death. The bear was estimated to be about one year old.