(TRINIDAD, Colo.) —  Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) is searching for a small, cinnamon-colored black bear that broke into a home near Boncarbo Friday, Aug. 11. It scratched an 82-year-old woman before leaving.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife searching for bear that scratched 82-year-old woman
Courtesy of Colorado Parks and Wildlife

CPW was told the victim was awakened shortly after midnight by a crashing sound and her dog growling. When she opened the doors to her mudroom, a small bear estimated to weigh less than 100 pounds leaped at her. The victim pushed the bear off of herself and closed the double doors to the room.

The bear then scrambled frantically around the room, climbed a shelf, and exited the house by tearing through an open window screen, per CPW. Officers believe the bear is a cub or yearling based on provided descriptions.

The victim declined medical attention for her scratches. A CPW officer set a trap for the bear in case it returned.

“Human health and safety always remain our top priority in any incident like this, regardless of how minor the injuries are,” said Mike Brown, CPW’s Area Wildlife Manager for the region.

Under CPW policy, any bear that causes injury to a human is classified as a dangerous bear and, if captured, must be humanely euthanized.

“CPW officers are doing everything we can to locate this bear. Luckily, the victim’s injuries consist of very minor scratches,” stated Brown.

This is the second bear attack in the Trinidad area in two weeks, stated CPW. The two incidents are not related, according to Brown. This is the fourth reported bear attack in Colorado in 2023.