Retired schoolteacher Mary Musselman loves critters. A little too much for authorities in Florida.
They handcuffed and arrested Ms. Musselman for continuing to feed bears on her property.
At some point, she was putting out more than a dozen bowls of dog food for bears, angering Florida Fish and Wildlife authorities. On their website, the FFW Conservation Commission says this:
For many people seeing a black bear is a thrilling, rewarding experience. The presence of bears is not necessarily a problem or a threat to your safety. But it is important to remember that bears are wild animals and deserve respect.
A fed bear is a dead bear.
The commission first became aware of Ms. Musselman after a bear she had been feeding had to be euthanized for getting too close to humans.
Ms. Musselman reportedly told conservation officials that she had to feed the bears otherwise they would starve to death.
Students of the retired teacher staged a rally urging her to be freed so she could look after her cancer-stricken husband.
Photo credit: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission