Florida man charged with accidentally shooting bear that was trying to eat his trash

Bullet broke bear’s back

FWC officers say a Daytona Beach man accidentally shot a bear that was trying to get into his trash can.
FWC officers say a Daytona Beach man accidentally shot a bear that was trying to get into his trash can. (FWC)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – A Daytona Beach man is facing a second-degree misdemeanor for shooting a bear that was trying to eat his trash when he meant to only fire a warning shot, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Officers said they were called to Alejandro Castellano’s home on Indian Lake Road on June 24 and when they arrived, Castellano told them that he got a notification from his alarm that there was activity in his yard so he went outside and saw a black bear trying to get into his trash can.

Castellano grabbed his .22 caliber rifle and fired what was meant to be a warning shot but accidentally struck the bear, according to the report.

Records show the bear collapsed to the ground, unable to stand, and dragged itself into the wood line.

Officers said they went into the woods with an FWC biologist and found the bear but determined that its back was broken and it wouldn’t be able to recover, so it was euthanized.

The .22 caliber bullet was found lodged inside the bear’s lungs, according to the affidavit. A single shell casing was found on Castellano’s porch.

Castellano said he’d fired warning shots at the bear before to scare it away because it went after his dogs on a previous occasion but he never contacted FWC about the animal, authorities said.

Castellano is charged with violating a Florida black bear conservation administrative code, which is a second-degree misdemeanor.