Bear sighting creates a stir in Bethlehem neighborhood

BETHLEHEM, Pa. (WPVI) -- You know you had an exciting day when it ends with a tranquilized bear in your swimming pool.

That's exactly what happened in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania this past weekend.

It was early Sunday morning when Bethlehem police started getting calls from neighbors around Cloverleaf Street.

"The officers got there and they located the bear, and the bear took off, and multiple officers corralled the bear into a backyard," said Bethlehem Police Chief Mark DeLuzio.

The backyard belongs to Steve Buell.

He tells Action News, "They tranquilized it and I guess the bear was able to lumber a couple of blocks away and I think it passed out in, or next to, a swimming pool."

Pennsylvania State Game Commission officials took it from there and transported the sleeping 1 to 2-year-old bear to the woodlands of north-central Pennsylvania where the animal has since woken up and was set free.

Meanwhile, Chief DeLuzio says this is not an isolated case.

He says the department receives several reports of bear sightings every year, and they've been able to tranquilize and relocate at least four bears since 2015.

The chief says the important thing is that no one was hurt, and the bear is safe after creating quite a stir this weekend.

"Some people BEAR-ly couldn't hold their emotions. Yea, I had to throw a joke in there," says DeLuzio.
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