CIMARRON (KRQE) - A large black bear attacked an elderly woman in her bed Tuesday night.
New Mexico Game and Fish officials say the bear ripped off a screen door to get inside the woman's home and then swiped at the woman's face.
The victim said she didn't see the bear when it attacked in Cimarron at about 10 p.m. on Tuesday night, but her cuts, the damage to the screen door and nearby bear tracks confirmed her suspicions.
Game and Fish isn't quite sure what lured the bear in the first place though.
"We are in a drought and they are looking for food, and it could have been any number of things that prompted this bear to do this but again, it's not a common occurrence," said Wildlife Officer Kyle Jackson.
Game and Fish contacted a local houndsman who used his dogs to track down the 400-pound black bear.
He said they were lucky to find it because the heat dissipates the smell, making it harder for dogs to trail bears in the summer.
They found the bear Wednesday morning about a mile or so from the victim's house and killed it.
Jackson said the elderly woman had minor cuts on her nose and head.
He said she is at home and doing fine.
The bear is now at the Veterinary Diagnostic Services lab and will be tested there for rabies.
Its paws and mouth will be tested for the woman's DNA to confirm it was the attacker.
"This bear didn't have any ear tags or history of it being a nuisance before," Jackson said. "It was just one of those freak things I guess."
Game and Fish officers expect to get lab results back within a few days.
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