Illinois woman facing charges after getting too close to grizzly bear, cubs in Yellowstone

An Illinois woman is facing a pair of federal charges after she was captured on video being charged by a grizzly bear while visiting Yellowstone National Park.

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Samantha Dehring of Carol Stream, Illinois, was among a small group of tourists who spotted a female grizzly and her two cubs on May 15 in the park’s Roaring Mountain section, the Billings Gazette reported.

>> Related: Suspected grizzly bear attacks, kills western Montana camper

According to CBS News, witnesses told investigators that when the bears began moving closer to the crowd, they returned to their vehicles and warned the woman to do the same. Dehring, instead, stayed put until after the sow grizzly charged her.

Video of the encounter was widely shared across social media, and Yellowstone officials posted their own screenshot of the woman on May 25, accompanied by a plea for tips to help identify her.

Park regulations require visitors to remain at least 300 feet away from bears and wolves.

>> Related: Grizzly bear fatally mauls guide near Yellowstone

Dehring has been charged with feeding, touching, teasing, frightening or intentionally disturbing wildlife, as well as violating closures and use limits, the Gazette reported.


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