Florida Woman Chased by Bear While Walking Her Dog

A woman says she was chased by a bear while walking her dog Tuesday night.

The chase happened around 8:15 p.m. in Longwood, a suburban area in Orlando, when Stefani McCoy says she spotted a bear wandering around a neighbor's yard. She also spotted two cubs in a tree nearby.

McCoy told WKMG in Orlando that she immediately turned around and began walking in the opposite direction with her dog.

But the bear spotted them and charged.

See also: Florida Boy Finds Bear Napping on Lanai

McCoy says the bear came within eight feet of her and the dog as it ran them down. The animal gave chase for about 30 yards before giving up and returning to her cubs.

This isn't the first time a bear lunged at a woman in Longwood.

Just a week ago, another woman was attacked and mauled by a bear in the same town. The woman suffered injuries to her face and head but is expected to recover.

After that attack, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission set up traps in the area and caught a female bear just days after the attack.

The FWC said the bear "matched the description" of the one that mauled the woman. It was euthanized soon after.

Days after that, a 200-pound male bear was caught in Longwood that also "matched the description" of the one that mauled the woman, and it too was put down.

And by "matched the description," we're assuming the bears each looked like a bear.

Meanwhile, the FWC says results from the DNA samples taken from the captured bears should be revealed in the coming week. Then we'll know which of the dead bears was the one they wanted all along and which was just super unlucky.

Some Longwood residents, however, are not too thrilled with the FWC's decision to "kill and ask questions later" when it comes to the bears.

The Orlando Sentinel interviewed Brenda Steigerwald, a resident of the area who is outraged by the euthanizations.

Steigerwald and her husband, Ken, have lived in the area for about 20 years and were so outraged by the euthanizations, they called their county elected officials for answers.

"Rather than murdering the wildlife, let's get some funding to educate the people first," Ken Steigerwald told the Sentinel.

As for McCoy, she says the bear chase was "one of the scariest things that's ever happened to me."

Maybe all these bears just want birthday cake!

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Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph