Maine police shoot bear in northeastern U.S. town

The Associated Press

RANGELEY, Maine- Police in Rangeley fatally shot a 200-pound (91-kilo) black bear after it charged an officer who was attempting to scare it out of town.

Several bears have been spotted during the past couple of weeks wandering downtown streets, hanging around the ice cream shop and getting into dumpsters and garbage cans, Police Chief Philip Weymouth said Tuesday.

On Saturday night, a bear wandered into town and wouldn't leave, even after Officer Brian Hughes tried to scare it away by clapping his hands and firing his gun into the ground, Weymouth said. The bear then snarled and hissed before charging Hughes, who shot it with a handgun.

The animal ran off and was found dead the next day behind the town offices.

It's not uncommon to see bears on the outskirts of Rangeley, which is located in the rugged mountains of western Maine. But it's unusual to see them brazenly wander the town's Main Street and side streets, wreaking havoc and causing trouble, the chief said.

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