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Auburn Man Facing Charges After Killing Bear In His Backyard

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AUBURN (CBS) – A 76-year-old Auburn man is facing charges after killing a bear in his backyard.

Richard Ahlstrand told WBZ-TV he was stocking his bird feeder Friday night when a bear about seven feet tall and 300-to-400 pounds started chasing him.

That’s when he turned his shotgun on the bear.

“I didn’t have time to aim through the sights, but I aimed in the direction of the head on this thing and I pulled the trigger before it got to me.  It just dropped,” he said.

Ahlstrand said he was carrying the shotgun Friday night because he thought he saw the bear in his yard Thursday.

“If that ever jumped on me, I wouldn’t even be here right know, I don’t think.  I know it was going to seriously maul me,” he said.

Ahlstrand is now charged with illegally killing a bear, illegally baiting a bear, illegal possession of a firearm and failing to secure a weapon.

Authorities believed the female bear had cubs.  Ahlstrand says he feels bad about that, but he believes he being unfairly labeled.

“They got me set up now like I’m some kind of murderer.  And then the environmental guy told me ‘You should have called me instead of shooting it.’  What was I going to do, say ‘Mister Bear would excuse me please while I go make a phone call?'”

Police don’t believe the bear was a threat to people.

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