Bear Infiltrates Colorado Mountain Resort, Attacks Security Guard In Kitchen, Officials Say

Not from the story. (OLIVIER MORIN/AFP via Getty Images)

Fiona McLoughlin Contributor
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A bear attacked a security guard inside the kitchen of a luxury hotel in Aspen, Colorado, Monday night, leaving him injured, officials say.

The unnamed male security guard at the St. Regis Aspen Resort was investigating a report of a bear sighting when he was attacked by the animal and transported to a local hospital with back injuries, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) said in a statement. He was released early Tuesday morning.

“While in the kitchen, the security guard surprised the bear as he was going around a corner into another area of the kitchen. The bear attacked the guard, swiping at him and knocking him down to the ground,” the statement reads.

During the investigation, wildlife officers learned the bear entered the hotel through doors near the courtyard. Officers located the animal near the hotel. (RELATED: Video Shows Bear Stealing Gummy Bears From Gas Station, Leaving Without Paying)

“However, due to public safety they were unable to safely tranquilize and capture the bear,” per the statement. Officers returned to the area and continued the search Tuesday evening.

“This incident serves as an unfortunate reminder that bears are still active as they prepare for hibernation,” the CPW said. They explained it’s common for bears to be seen in Aspen but urged people to be “‘bear aware’ at all times.”

The kind of bear involved in the attack was not revealed in the CPW news release. The wildlife officers were given a description of the bear and “specific identification markers” to help locate and identify the animal properly.

The CPW estimates there are roughly 17,000 to 20,000 black bears in Colorado.

Earlier in October, a 73-year-old woman was airlifted to a hospital after a bear attacked her and her husband in Montana. The couple had been walking their dog when they came in contact with the bear, according to a Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks statement.