California Man Cited for Possession of Bear Cubs

Man arrested, bear cubs returned to the wild.

California Man Cited for Possession of Bear Cubs

A California man turned himself in and was charged for taking two black bear cubs from their den. Photo: iStock/ChuckSchug Photography

A northern California man faced charges after taking two bear cubs from their den and then reporting it to state wildlife officials. The agency reported that Cody Dylon Setzer, 29, and an unidentified co-worker admitted taking the cubs. The two cooperated with wildlife officials in the investigation, which was sparked when Setzer contacted conservation officers to say he had found the bears north of Yrkea in Siskiyou County. 

Wildlife officials could not find any bear tracks or habitat, though. Setzer’s unidentified co-worker took the cubs back to the den site, which was in Shasta County. That’s about 90 miles from where Setzer told authorities he found the cubs. The den site had been destroyed, and CDFW officials took the cubs to its Wildlife Health Laboratory in Rancho Cordova. It later turned them over for rehabilitation to Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care. 

The cubs were returned to Shasta County in April 2020, when they were old enough to care for themselves. The CDFW announced the story as part of its effort to educate the public about poaching and leaving wildlife alone. 

In November 2021, Setzer pleaded guilty in Siskiyou Superior Court to possession of a prohibited species and obstructing a peace officer in the course of his duties. He was ordered to pay $2,290 in fines and fees and complete 200 hours of community service. Setzer was also placed on probation for 12 months, with his hunting and fishing privileges suspended for the duration of his probation. Setzer also was sentenced to 90 days in the county jail, which will be stayed if he successfully completes probation, the department said.


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