Maryland bear killed after feeding for weeks

File photo

WESTERNPORT, Md. (AP) - Maryland wildlife officials say they have killed a bear that was being fed by people in the town of Westernport over the last month.

Biologist Harry Spiker tells The Cumberland Times-News that Maryland Wildlife and Heritage Service personnel got a call Tuesday that the 172-pound male bear was walking around town. Spiker says the bear had lost all fear of people.

Spiker shot the bear with a tranquilizer dart, but it didn't work. The bear ran through the woods and up Georges Creek. It was then euthanized with a gunshot.

Spiker says there had been reports of people hand feeding the bear and children tossing hot dogs to it.

Intentionally feeding a bear is illegal. Fines range from $1,500 to $4,000 and the offense can carry a jail sentence.