Staying a safe distance away from wildlife should be common sense. National parks and state parks provide plenty of signage instructing visitors to stay a certain distance away from animals.  Yes, this is also common sense.

This past May, a woman was seen approaching a grizzly bear at Yellowstone National Park. She was within 30-yards of the bear and, to nobody’s surprise, was subsequently charged by the bear. The video of this encounter went viral. Park officials asked for help identifying this woman as it is illegal to get within 100-yards of a bear at Yellowstone.

Well, it turns out these rules are indeed enforced. The woman was identified following the viral video. According to a report from KHQ, 25-year-old Samantha R. Dehring appeared in court on October 6th in Mammoth Hot Springs, WY. She pled guilty to “willfully remaining, approaching, and photographing wildlife within 100 yards”. Additional charges were dropped.  Dehring was sentenced to four days in custody and will be on probation for one year. She will be faced with some additional fines.

This is a good reminder to remain at a safe distance from wildlife. The legal ramifications do actually exist, not to mention the very real possibility of physical harm.

Photos from: Yellowstone National Park Facebook Page