Wednesday, September 10, 2003


Black Bear Leads Authorities On Wild Chase In Leesburg

Right outside our door, too. And who says that life in the 'burbs is boring!

Children parked their bikes near Memorial Drive watching from afar and a television news helicopter hovered overhead as about a dozen Loudoun County Animal Care and Control officers, police officers and animal control wardens chased the 2-year-old bear through the woods and eventually up the tree where it taunted them for a good 30 minutes.

Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Warden Mark DiLuigi needed three tranquilizer darts to get the bear drowsy enough to slowly climb down from the Elm tree. And then it ran again, scaring one woman back to her Ayr Street NW home. It took nearly two hours for the group to capture the 125-pound bear at 7:45 p.m. near Loudoun Country Day School. The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries took custody of the mammal to release into the wild of Culpeper County that evening.

According to Leesburg Police Sgt. Mike Amato, the first call came in at 4:30 p.m.—a black bear spotted in someone’s back yard on northwest Leesburg’s Wilson Avenue and West Market Street. Approximately 80 phone calls were fielded by dispatchers, Leesburg Police Capt. Clagett Moxley said, from residents who were wondering why there was a helicopter above their house.

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