Remember that woman who went viral after getting too close a grizzly prompting a bluff charge? She’s been identified and charged with two offenses.
Check out this clip of a @YellowstoneNPS grizzly bear bluff charging a tourist that got too close. Darcie Addington took this from the safety of her vehicle. She doesn't know the other woman, but says several people warned her. Remember to give bears at least 100 yards of space. pic.twitter.com/7rnMgKGNxm
— NBC Montana (@NBCMontana) May 12, 2021
The Billing Gazette reports Samantha Dehring of Carol Stream, Illinois, has been charged in U.S. District Court in Yellowstone Park with feeding, touching, teasing, frightening or intentionally disturbing wildlife and violating closures and use limits.
On May 15th, Dehring was visiting the Roaring Mountain area of Yellowstone when she and a small group of other tourists spotted the sow bear and her two cubs. The sow was about 15 feet from the woman. Witnesses told investigators that when they saw the bears coming closer, they retreated to their vehicles and warned Dehring to also get back, “but, she did not.” Park regulations require visitors stay at least 300 feet away from bears and wolves.
Video of the encounter went viral social media. On May 25th, the park posted a photo of the woman on its Facebook page along with a plea for tips that could help identify her.
“The unidentified woman is described as white, mid 30’s, brown hair, and wearing black clothing. If you were around Roaring Mountain on May 10, 2021 at 4:45PM, or you have information that could help, please contact NPS Investigative Services Branch.”
On the same day Yellowstone posted the description Dehring unfollowed the park’s Facebook page. A tip from someone who had seen a posting of the video with the suspect’s name tagged led to her identification. Investigators got a warrant to search Dehring’s Facebook page where she had posted photos of the bears with the caption “absolutely floored by the beauty of this place.”
She is set to appear in court Aug. 26th.