Bear Terrorizing Downieville Euthanized After Attempting School Break-In


Sierra County Sheriff’s Office Addresses Safety Concerns with Euthanization of Public Safety Bear in Downieville

Downieville, California – May 15, 2024 – In response to escalating reports of bear break-ins causing damage and posing significant public safety concerns in the Downieville area of Sierra County, the Sierra County Sheriff’s Office took decisive action to protect the community.
Since early May, the Sheriff’s Office has been inundated with daily reports from distressed homeowners and business owners regarding bears breaking into residences and vehicles, creating havoc and endangering local residents. The escalating threat persisted despite efforts to mitigate the situation, including pursuing depredation permits from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Sheriff Fisher, recognizing the urgent need to address the issue, declared the bear responsible for multiple break-ins as a threat to public safety. With the cooperation of the USDA Trapper, a live trap was strategically deployed near a residence in Downieville, which had been repeatedly targeted by the bear.

Today, the situation reached a critical point when the bear attempted to enter the Downieville School gymnasium, prompting an immediate response from Sheriff’s deputies. Subsequently, the bear proceeded to break into a nearby home, where it was confronted by a resident before attempting to gain entry into another residence.

Given the escalating danger posed by the bear’s behavior and the imminent threat it presented to residents, deputies were left with no choice but to euthanize the bear in the interest of public safety.

Sheriff Fisher expresses deep regret over the necessity of this action but emphasizes that the safety of Sierra County residents remains the utmost priority. Efforts will continue to educate the community about bear safety measures and to collaborate with relevant authorities to prevent similar incidents in the future.


Information submitted by Sierra County Sheriff’s Office