Authorities Question If Wis. Bear Attack Was Provoked

SUPERIOR, Wis. (WCCO) — A hunter, who was trying to save a friend, survived being mauled by a black bear near Duluth this weekend. But investigators say they’re not sure if it was an innocent bear attack, wondering if it may have been provoked.

Charles Lehman said a black bear bit him and ripped his clothes after he tried to shoo it away from another hunter. The encounter happened on Saturday night in Superior, Wis.

Lehman’s arm was wounded and his clothing was torn and bloody from the attack. The aftermath was captured on the dash cam from a Superior police officer’s squad car. Paramedics rushed him to a Duluth hospital for treatment.

Lehman and his bow hunting partner, Tiffany Mallow, told police that a black bear came to eat their hunting bait, trapping Mallow in her hunting spot.

Lehman approached the bear to get it away from Mallow when it attacked and bit him. Lehman used a knife to stab the bear while it attacked and Mallow shot it with her bow.

“The bear went one direction. The couple were able to get out of the woods and get to a spot where they were able to call 911,” said Superior Police Capt. Matt Markon.

Superior officers were then able to locate the black bear where they shot and killed it.

“We’re questioning the veracity of the initial story,” Markon said.

Investigators said they are not sure if whether the couple was in danger in the first place. They wonder if the pair provoked the bear by shooting and stabbing it before it turned on them and attacked Lehman.

Conservation wardens are now looking into both scenarios and they also want to know if the couple had a hunting license.

Mallow was not injured in the attack. Lehman has been released from the hospital. The bear is being tested for the possibility of rabies.

  • Jake

    They ‘provoked’ the bear by stabbing it? What, the bear just came up to them to give them a hug, so they stabbed and shot at it, and then it went on a murderous rampage?

  • Tiff the Mighty Huntress

    So they baited a bear, then tried to kill it and when it got mad about being stabbed several times the bear scratched the guy? Sounds like he deserved it, too bad it didn’t kill him, one less idiot wandering the streets. Don’t go hunting if you don’t know what you’re doing.

    • Jules

      I think they we’re baiting deer and the bear came to the deer bait. Like there much difference.

  • Bear Lover

    Of course this bear was provoked…this poor bear did not have to lose his life to these two idiots, they probably didn’t even have a hunting license! So sad and unnecessary!

  • thoams lamberty

    I believe thrice encvoutnered before, what does it

  • Daniel Boone

    Going after a bear with a knife…now that’s what I call real hunting! Let’s even those odds a bit. I hope that all of you wussy hunters who hide behind your high-powered rifles take note. This is how real men hunt!

  • Merrie Lewis

    Isn’t it enough that cattle, chickens, turkeys, pigs, fish — all have to be grown and slaughtered to appease human gluttony? Real men, my Aunt Fanny — real men are kind, brave, resourceful, loving, intelligent. Psuedo-men are cruel, stupid, ignornant, egotistic — could go on. Hunters are not “real men” — they are the real “animals.” It is no longer necessary to kill wildlife. It is done totally out of cruelty. Because they like to shed the blood of innocent creatures, minding their own business as they live out their short lives.

    • you live in a bubble

      You live in a society that can choose what and when to eat. It is easy to forget that humans are not separate from nature and the circle of life. Humans are omnivorous animals, and like all animals, we depend upon other life forms for food. The ability to hunt for food allowed our species to adapt and thrive in the different environments around the globe. Millions still hunt for food and for sport, and it is a skill that may come in handy if the thin veneer of “civilization” is peeled away. If you choose not to hunt that is your choice. You have no right to judge others for doing what our species evolved to do. Humans are a predator species that is not necessarily at the top of the food chain. Are you saying that all predators that hunt are cruel? Are their prey also “innocent”? In your little world you see yourself as separate from and above the natural world, and anthropomorphize the creatures that live their by feeding on each other.

    • CorkyF

      LOL……I bet you got all wussed out when the hunter shot Hope the bear. There’s more where they came from.

  • Kerry Mahoney

    I support the right to arm bears!!!

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  • mborne

    Was there alcohol involved in this “hunting trip”? Just wondering if the police or hospital checked.

  • gwen king

    Shame on the hunters..You need to learn about bears before yOU hunt one..REALLY

    • really really

      They were hunting deer. Or so they said. There seems to be some question as to exactly what they were doing. But hey, really in all capital letters REALLY forgoes the need to make any kind of point, right?

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