Grizzly bear shooting causes controversy
Sep 16, 2011
Members of a community in Idaho bid thousands of dollars on a pig so 14-year-old Jasmine Hill could pay the $50,000 bail to get her father out of jail. He had been incarcerated for shooting a grizzly bear, a threatened species, when it came 40 yards away from his home near the Selkirk Mountains, the Detroit Free Press reports.
Neighbors and friends are outraged at the backhoe farmer Jeremy Hill's sentence for killing the bear in what many see as self-defense. Even county prosecutor Jack Douglas felt for Hill, who supports a family of eight.
"Grizzly bears are unpredictable, dangerous predators," Douglas said. "In my mind, there's no question that the Hill family was likely in danger or that Jeremy ... did what he did in defense of his family and his property."
However, federal officials said that Hill violated the Endangered Species Act, which only allows landowners to shoot a grizzly if it is directly threatening a human life.
Grizzlies once lived all across North America, even roaming the Great Plains, according to National Geographic. Now only about 1,000 roam in the continental U.S., and others roam in Canada and Alaska where hunters pursue them.