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MDC: Man Who Shot at Bear Was Not On Their Property

A detailed survey of the site off Albany Ave. in West Hartford was completed Wednesday.

Metropolitan District Commission officials announced Wednesday afternoon that the that attacked his dog Monday morning was not on the MDC property.

According to Chris Stone, Assistant District Counsel for the MDC, a determined that "the point at which the firearm was discharged was not MDC property, and the path [Dan Sweeney] took when he arrived at the site to the point of discharge was not MDC property."

Carrying and discharging a firearm on MDC property, and allowing a dog to be off leash, all are violations of stated rules.

West Hartford resident Dan Sweeney, 29, of 25 Harwich Lane, was walking his 6-year-old schnauzer and another dog at approximately 6:40 a.m. Monday in the wooded area south of Albany Ave. and west of Old Stone Crossing. The property is across Albany Ave. from the MDC Reservoir #6.

Police said the schnauzer was not leashed when a bear attacked it. According to the police report, Sweeney stated that he fired his handgun several times at the bear in an attempt to save his dog. Sweeney also stated that the bear ran off into the woods at which time he was able to retrieve his injured dog and bring it to the VCA Avon Emergency Animal Hospital.

The Hartford Courant reported Wednesday afternoon that the schnauzer, Kepler, has now died.

Sweeney could not be reached for comment, and additional information was not available from West Hartford Police at this time.

Stone said that although he heard a rumor, "I have no independent knowledge that the dog has passed away." Stone said he had not communicated with either the dog's owner or the veterinarian regarding the status of the dog.

The MDC will not issue a summons to Sweeney because the incident did not occur on the organization's property, Stone said.

No further action by the MDC is expected in this case. However, Stone said, "We will keep a heightened awareness of bears on our property and make sure it is as safe as possible."

Troy K. July 19, 2012 at 12:18 PM
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Philip Cote July 19, 2012 at 02:14 PM
Sorry to hear about the loss of a dog. Not an easy time I am sure.
Carol Mersereau July 19, 2012 at 07:38 PM
I AM SHOCKED THAT THERE ARE BEARS IN THE RESERVOIR AREA...HAVE THEY BEEN THERE ALWAYS?

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