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Another bear break-in reported in South Anchorage

Alaska Dispatch
Photo courtesy of Chris Cook

An Anchorage Hillside homeowner was surprised by a brown bear intruder late Friday night after suspicious noises lead him to an unusual scene. Chris Cook, whose home is in Paradise Valley, was watching TV when his wife, Rima, called down to him saying she'd heard a noise. Initially Cook, who claims not to have heard the noise, dismissed his wife's concern. It wasn't until a while later, when Cook went upstairs to go to bed, that he heard banging coming for the garage.

He went to investigate and as he peered out through the window he noticed a figure standing in the dog kennel that ran parallel to the garage. Cook immediately identified the intruder as a medium-sized brown bear.

In an email, Cook wrote, "I called 911 and stated that I was going to shoot the bear. They advised that I stay inside."

But Cook wasn't going to take any chances. Thinking the bear was still in the dog kennel, he made his way toward the garage where his "slug-loaded shotgun" was being stored for easy access during hunting season. As he opened the side door leading from the house to the garage, Cook found the bear had moved inside and now stood between himself and his weapon.

Cook explained: "The bear and I made eye to eye contact and it gave me one of those imminent danger looks, not good, that I have seen a few times up close on bears." Cook promptly shut the door and, still on the line with the 911 operator, waited for police.

By the time officers arrived the bear had already fled the scene. Cook guesses the animal had probably been in his garage for about an hour.  While it mostly just ate trash, the bear did managed to do damage to other items, including biting Cook's inflatable canoe.

Police were not able to locate the bear after the break-in, and therefore little is known about the animal. It remains at large on South Anchorage's Hillside.