15-Hour Standoff Between Bear at Elementary School and Wildlife Officers Ends Peacefully

Bear Watch 2017 comes to an end in Renton with the bear scurrying away safely early Thursday morning.

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A 15-hour standoff between wildlife officers and a bear finally ended around 3:30 a.m. Thursday morning. The bear instantly grabbed attention after climbing a tree near an elementary school in Renton.

People first spotted the bear in the tree near Highlands Elementary School around noon Wednesday, next to the tennis courts at nearby Highlands Park. Washington state Department of Fish and Wildlife blocked off streets all day while crews monitored the bear.

In the evening, wildlife agents used rounds of flash bangs and bean bags to try and scare the bear out of the tree, but it only climbed further up.

When it got dark, agents backed away from the scene. After some time, the bear came down from the tree and walked around the grassy field, only to quickly climb another tree when wildlife agents and a dog moved in.

Wildlife agents set up a tarp at the base of the second tree in hopes the bear would eventually come back down on his own.

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The bear climbed down the tree roughly one hour after wildlife officials left the area, hoping their absence would help the bear come down. 

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© 2017 KING-TV


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