:::: UPDATE :::: City of Savage Police Chief Rodney Seurer tells us the bear is still on the loose and was spotted around 9 p.m. last night headed toward 141st Street and Princeton Avenue in a residential part of town.
(Original post -- May 29) The Savage Police Department is still hunting for a black bear that has been spotted a number of times around the northwestern part of town in the last week.
A cop actually shot the bear after it was spotted near the Town and Country Campground around 8:30 p.m. last Friday, but it escaped into the woods without being brought down.
Asked how many times the bear was shot, Savage Police Chief Rodney Seurer tells us, "At least two or three."
While acknowledging the cop could've missed -- "it was close to dark," Seurer says -- when the bear was spotted crossing Highway 13 on Monday morning, witnesses said it was limping.
Seurer says the DNR advised the Savage PD to put the bear down, mainly because "bears and food near a residential area is not a good combo."
A news release issued by Savage police describes the bear as roughly two years old and 200 pounds.
"Although seeing a bear can be a memorable experience, people must always be cautious around them since they may react unpredictably," the release says. "Bears can become a nuisance when they visit homes, resorts, campgrounds and restaurants. When bears find a source of food, they will usually return regularly. Although some bears become used to people, they are still wild animals no matter how 'tame' they may appear."
Seurer says that while wild bears have been spotted in nearby towns like Burnsville and Shakopee -- home of the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge -- he's not aware of a previous instance where one has been spotted in Savage.
Anyone who spots the bear is asked to call 911 immediately and report the animal's location and direction of travel.
DNR officials didn't return a voicemail seeking comment.