Arguments made over state liability in bear attack

Mar 31 2010 - 2:30pm

SALT LAKE CITY -- The Utah Supreme Court has heard arguments over whether the state should be held liable in the death of an 11-year-old-boy who was pulled out of his tent by a black bear in 2007.

A state judge last year dismissed a negligence suit filed against the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources by the family of Samuel Ives.

In arguments Wednesday, an attorney representing Ives' family said the state already knew the bear was trouble but failed to post a notice at the camp site where the family stayed. Crews were indeed looking for the bear in hopes of euthanizing it.

The Utah attorney general's office argued immunity on several fronts, including that the bears are a "natural condition" on public land, a distinction that shields the state from liability.

The court took the arguments under advisement.

 

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