Deputies in Arkansas are under fire -and at home without pay- for shooting a black bear that had been run over by a by a car and was severely injured.
Logan County investigators report that a driver had struck the black bear, who was attempting to cross the road.
“The way he described, it may have rolled up under the vehicle, the front wheels and the rear wheels also,” Logan County Sheriff Boyd Hicks said.
The two deputies determined the animal was in pain and dying, so they shot killed the bear in an act of compassion.
In spite of what would appear to be the right thing to do by ending the bear’s suffering, Sheriff Hicks disciplined the deputies by placing them on unpaid leave.
“Game and Fish was on the way and what they should have done is wait until Game and Fish and the biologist got there, so they could make the determination of what needed to be done,” he said.
Arkansas Fish and Game claim that black bears are a protected species that cannot be killed outside of hunting season. There was no word from the agency on whether or not there will be an investigation.
According to 5 News, The game wardens said that since mating season is just around the corner, many mothers are kicking the younger male bears from the nest as they prepare for mating and believe the bear in question was likely such a case.
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