Did a Bear Get Locked in a Car in West Michigan?
When you see things about your neighborhood on social media, you always have to wonder if it is true or not.
Such was the case on Sunday, October 16th, when various posts on social media that told the story of a person who called police about an incident with their car. When police arrived, "they found the vehicle locked with a bear inside." The posts also included several pictures of a very trashed interior of a car and a picture of a black bear standing in someone's yard.
This Story is Reported to Have Happened in Several Locations
The problem develops when you start seeing the same post and pictures, but with a different location listed. I've seen posts that said this happened in Greenville, Grand Rapids, and also Holland, Michigan.
I asked if anyone could confirm this story actually happening here in West Michigan and found that a similar post was also out there about this bear being locked in a car in Shreveport, Louisiana and also Summerfield, Florida.
Most of the posts looked like they originated from a group called "(Insert city) and Surrounding Area online yard sell".
Did a Bear Really Get Locked Inside Someone's Car?
I have seen stories about things like this happening out west, in places like Colorado. As of yet, I haven't heard of it happening in Michigan.
Thanks to information provided to me by Elizabeth, it looks like this story actually originated in North Carolina.
There is a story from the Charlotte Observer that describes the story of a bear getting into someone's car, and getting locked inside, in Hilltop, North Carolina (just outside of Greensboro). The story dates back to July 23rd of this year.
The photos were originally posted on Facebook by Blue Ridge Public Safety. The post had the same exact wording as the postings we are seeing for cities across the United States:
Officers were dispatched to a vehicle unlock this morning in Hilltop. Once they arrived they found the vehicle locked with a bear inside. Needless to say Bear -1 Vehicle -0 . This is a reminder to keep your vehicle doors locked even if you will be out of it for only a few minutes.
Here is the original Facebook post and photos...
Still a Good Tip
So while this story may not have actually happened in West Michigan this time, it is always a good idea to keep your vehicles locked. There have been an occasional black bear that has wandered into the Grand Rapids area over the last couple of years. So while this COULD happen, it DID NOT happen in Michigan THIS time!