Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Sweet-toothed candy-store visitor was beary polite

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DENVER -- A black bear went in and out of a Colorado candy store multiple times early one July morning, but it used the front door and didn't break a thing.

The bear did, however, steal some treats from the Estes Park store, including English toffee and some chocolate-chip cookies dipped in caramel and milk chocolate called "cookie bears."

Surveillance video at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory showed the bear prying open the door and grabbing some candy near the registers. It took the treats outside and ate them, then returned for more. The bear made seven trips in about 15 minutes, finally leaving after a car apparently scared it away.

Store owner Jo Adams said the bear managed to pop open the door because the deadbolt wasn't secured. The only evidence her careful visitor left behind was some dirt on a counter and some paper on the ground, she said. There weren't any wrappers, so she assumes he ate those, too.

"He was very clean and very careful. He ate a lot of candy," Adams said of the bear break-in.

Keeping bears out of human food in homes, garbage cans and cars is an ongoing struggle in Colorado's mountain towns at the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park.

A bear that broke into more than one occupied home was euthanized last month because it posed a danger to people, Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokeswoman Jennifer Churchill said.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 9, 2012 A12

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