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Illinois woman charged for close encounter with grizzly in Yellowstone

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Posted at 10:56 AM, Jul 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-29 12:56:25-04

MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS - An Illinois woman has been charged after she was caught on video getting too close to a grizzly bear in Yellowstone National Park.

Samantha Dehring of Carol Stream, Ilinois, has been charged in U.S. District Court with offenses, including violating closures and use limits and feeding, touching, teasing, frightening or intentional disturbing of wildlife, according to court records. She is scheduled to appear in court in Mammoth on Aug. 26.

Dehring was captured on video on May 10 at the north end of the Roaring Mountain parking lot as she approached a mother grizzly bear and two cubs. The mother bear charged the woman, and she walked away from the bear.

Park regulations require visitors to stay at least 300 feet away from bears and wolves.

The video was shared across social media and on May 25 Yellowstone National Park rangers asked for the public's help in identifying the woman.

A tip led investigators to Dehring.

About two weeks after the incident, a 39-year-old hiker was injured by a grizzly bear.