UNIONTOWN (KDKA) — Police shot and killed a black bear after it got too close for comfort in Uniontown.

The bear was apparently attracted by the smell of the food at the city’s Italian Heritage Festival on Sunday.

“He was big,” Donna Thomas said. “I wouldn’t have tangled with him.”

The 350-pound bear was outside her home on Cleveland Avenue.

Uniontown Police received a number of calls about the bear roaming the neighborhood. They followed the bear to try and chase it back into the woods, but the animal had something else in mind.

“He attempted to keep doubling back to get to the downtown area and then at one point he shot up over the hill towards Lincoln Street,” Uniontown Police Chief Jason Cox said.

Police believe the bear was on its way to the festival where thousands of people were in attendance. They didn’t want to take a chance on the bear coming in contact with the public.

After the bear nearly caused a panic through the neighborhood, it climbed a tree. That’s when police shot it.

“At that point it was determined that the risk was too great and we made the decision that we had to terminate the bear,” Chief Cox said.

Police later discovered the bear had been captured, tagged and released back into the woods on two other occasions.

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