A Case with Bear Facts

  • Turhon A. Murad
  • Margie H. Boddy


on july 9, 1985, a law enforcement officer was dispatched in Shasta County, California, to investigate the discovery of what was reported as human bones and a skull found along a logging road. There the deputy found a 1974 Oldsmobile with out-of-state plates. The automobile had been badly damaged by what the officer had determined to be a bear due to the dried muddy tracks on and around the vehicle. Furthermore, he reported extensive damage to the automobiles vinyl top and foam rubber from claw marks. Some windows were broken out, and the seats were described as having been badly torn by claws or teeth. The officers report went on to state that clothing and various personal effects were recovered from within a radius of 70 yards (63 m) from the vehicle. Of particular interest to this report is the fact that animal feces were recovered from atop the hood and windshield of the automobile and in its vicinity. Within 65 yards (57 m) of the passenger side of the automobile and down an embankment, a major portion of a human calvarium and mandible as well as portions of the appendicular skeleton were discovered. Although numerous torn and tattered articles of clothing were found both inside and outside the vehicle, no human remains were recovered from within the auto.


California Department Personal Effect Appendicular Skeleton Grizzly Bear Human Skeletal Remains 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    See B. D. Haynes and E. Haynes, eds., The Grizzly Bear: Portraits from Life (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1966).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    W. P. Dasmann, Big Game of California (Sacramento: California Department of Fish and Game, 1975).Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    See Dasmann; also see J. B. Schoen, S. D. Miller, and H. V. Reynolds III, “Last Stronghold of the Grizzly,” Natural History, 96: January 1, 1987, 50–60.Google Scholar
  4. 7.
    W. M. Bass, “The Time Interval Since Death: A Difficult Decision,” in T. A. Rathbun and J. E. Buikstra, eds., Human Identification: Case Studies in Forensic Anthropology (Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas, 1985).Google Scholar
  5. 8.
    T.D. Stewart, Essentials of Forensic Anthropology: Especially as Developed in the United States (Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas, 1985).Google Scholar
  6. 9.
    W. C. Rodriguez and W. M. Bass, “Insect Activity and Its Relationship to Decay Rates of Human Cadavers in East Tennessee,” Journal of Forensic Sciences 28:2, April 1983, 423–432, and “Decomposition of Buried Bodies and Methods That May Aid in Their Location,” Journal of Forensic Sciences, 30:3, July 1985, 836–852.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Mikita Brottman 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Turhon A. Murad
  • Margie H. Boddy

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations