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Black Bear Hits Man's Truck, Dies in Oxford

The incident occurred on Hunters Mountain Road Wednesday night, Sept. 26, in Oxford. Warning: The photographs may be upsetting to some. How many bears are sighted locally and in Connecticut? Read on to find out.

 

OXFORD - George Muttick was almost home Wednesday night when something massive struck the rear passenger side of his Chevy 2500 pickup truck, nearly tipping the automobile.

Muttick jumped out of the driver’s seat, looked around and saw a sight he never expected: a 250-pound black bear dead on the side of the Hunters Mountain Road.

“I’ve hit deer before, and I knew right away this was no deer when it struck,” he said. “This thing tipped my truck pretty good.”

Muttick, a 24-year-old aircraft electrician at Sikorsky and a volunteer Oxford firefighter, saw fur sticking out of the rear wheel well and blood on the side of the truck bed, but no other damage. He immediately called 911.

State police arrived at 7:27 p.m. and called officials from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to check on the bear. Muttick said officials estimated the bear weighed up to 250 pounds. It was not tagged, meaning it had not come in contact with any state or federal regulatory agencies in the past.

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Muttick, who was not injured, lives just a few houses away from where the incident occurred. He said he’s heard of bobcats and people discussing mountain lions in the area, but hasn’t heard about bears before. He’s never seen one and certainly never hit one.

Asked if he was shocked by the incident, Muttick said, “Well I certainly never expected that a bear would try to jump in the bed of my truck.”

The bear has been sent away to be gutted; the outside remains will be sent to a tannery. The DEEP gave the bear to Muttick, like they would if he hit a deer or another animal. 

“It’ll make a nice rug,” he said.

It will certainly make for one heck of a story.

Local Sightings

According to the state DEEP, bear sightings have occurred locally. The data is from 10/2/2011 to 9/13/2012.

  • Bethlehem: 8 sightings
  • Middlebury: 0 sightings
  • Naugatuck: 2 sightings
  • Oxford: 3 sightings
  • Southbury: 18 sightings
  • Waterbury: 2 sightings
  • Woodbury: 5 sightings

Across the entire state of Connecticut for the above time period, 2,588 sightings occurred.

Have you ever seen a bear in Connecticut? Tell us where in the comments.

Note: This link goes to DEEP fact sheet about black bears in CT. 

kevin bendell September 30, 2012 at 05:18 PM
their has ben bears in new milford and brookfield for years.
Jaimie Cura (Editor) September 30, 2012 at 05:55 PM
I checked the DEEP site, Kevin - New Milford had 21 reported sightings - have you ever seen a bear in Connecticut?
Crystal September 30, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Those pictures are just too much. Naug patch removed them because their readers complained.
Debbie Carlson September 30, 2012 at 11:04 PM
We had a bear walk through my parents yard during the day. This was in 2011. Barn Hill Road, Woodbury.
Debbie Carlson September 30, 2012 at 11:29 PM
I agree with you Crystal, those pictures showing off the dead bear is really cruel.
Palin Smith October 01, 2012 at 04:33 AM
If the bear hit the truck, what was the bear driving?
Debbie Carlson October 01, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Lol Palin!!!
Voice of Reason October 01, 2012 at 10:21 PM
Lol. Call the guys at Black Bear Auto in Bristol. They might know. Unless it was a Stutz BEARcat.

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