Facebook post claims black bear seen in Imlay City limits


IMLAY CITY — Imlay City Police Chief Brett Selby reported that over the weekend (Oct. 15-16), someone on Facebook claimed that a black bear had been spotted within the city limits.

Selby said the apparent social media jokester went so far as to post a photograph of a torn-up SUV, alongside a photo of a black bear meandering through an open area.

Given the improbable scenario, Imlay City police quickly ascertained that the report was nothing more than a joke.

“Certainly, we would let residents know if such an incident had occurred,” Chief Selby said. “Realizing the report was not true, no response was necessary.”

Ironically, Selby pointed out that Imlay City police do carry “Teddy bears” in their patrol cars, which are used to distract children who are victims of a traumatic event.
“These stuffed bears are brand new,” he said. “They have been donated to the Imlay City Police Department by residents, various outreach groups, and victim advocacy organizations.

“These bears can make a difference to children when they, or a loved one, are injured in a car accident or other unfortunate event,” said Selby. “Police departments across the country have been doing this for years.”

Selby speculated that this most recent bear sighting probably ended well for all involved.

“We believe this bear went back into hibernation,” Selby said. “But only after first posing for the Facebook photo.”

Tom Wearing started at the Tri-City Times in 1989, covering the Village of Capac as a beat reporter. He later served stints as assistant editor and editor. Today, he covers Imlay City and Almont as a staff writer. He enjoys music and plays drums and sings with various musical groups in the Detroit Metropolitan area.