Bear Breaks Into Colorado Home, Claws Man

By author of The Realblog with Stephanie Mallory

Dave Chernosky sustained deep wounds to his head, face, and neck

A man staying at a friend’s home in Denver was attacked and injured by a black bear that entered the guesthouse where he was vacationing. reports the bear inflicted severe swipe injuries to 54-year-old Dave Chernosky’s face, neck, and head. Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials used dogs to track down the bear on Friday and euthanized it a few hours later.

Randy Hampton, public information officer for the northwest region of CPW, said the front door to the guesthouse had a lever door handle that bears can easily operate.

“You’re talking about a 400-pound animal — they can push down with enough force to sometimes pop those locks,” he said.

Chernosky was staying at the house with his two children when he heard noises and walked into the kitchen to check. That’s when he saw the bear. He attempted to shoo it into the garage, but when he pushed the garage door opener, the bear panicked and ran back into the house. It swiped at Chernosky with its claws as it passed, leaving him with severe lacerations. 

“I turned around in the hallway and looked him straight in the face, and he just went bam and hit me in the face with his paw one time,” Chernosky said. 

The bear ran out of the house, and Chernosky called 911 to report the attack. He was taken to Aspen Valley Hospital, where he received surgery to close his wounds.

“I literally thought I might be dead,” he said. 

Hampton said CPW believes this was the same bear that had been reported rummaging through trash in the area over the past few years. Previous attempts to haze and trap the bear were unsuccessful.

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