Vail woman’s purse stolen by a bear |

Vail woman’s purse stolen by a bear

Scott N. Miller

VAIL ” Lisa Cohen had been looking everywhere for her purse.

She’d called the theater and restaurant she and her husband, David, had been to Sunday evening, and looked everywhere around the couple’s home on Beaver Dam Road.

The purse finally turned up, as did a takeout box from a restaurant. The purse ” which had a single-serving cereal box in it ” was nabbed by the bear who had taken the takeout box. Monday morning, Cohen was still shaken.

On a fall vacation from their home in Atlanta the Cohens were staying at their Vail home, which is being renovated. The house is draped in plastic sheeting, and there are only a couple of rooms fit to inhabit.

Plastic doesn’t do much to keep bears away, of course, so the animal walked right into the house, took whatever smelled good, and left.

“David thinks he saw it leaving,” a still-shaken Lisa Cohen said.

While Vail is long past its first killing frost, bears are still gorging themselves for winter hibernation. That means residents still have to be on guard for the animals.

This was a deadly season for bears in Vail. Two bears that had been raiding local trash cans and homes were captured and killed by the Colorado Division of Wildlife.

At the end of August, a 72-year-old woman cooking a pot roast received minor scratches on her arm when a bear snuck into her home on Meadow Lane in East Vail and swatted her.

Those encounters prompted the Vail Town Council earlier this year to pass a new ordinance which requires residents and business owners to buy or build bear-resistant trash containers or enclosures.

As hibernation time nears, Vail police say incidents have dropped off a bit.

“It’s slowed down a little over the last few weeks,” Vail Police Chief Dwight Henninger said. “We haven’t seen any on the day shift for a while now.”

Since Vail’s new bear law was passed, Henninger said his officers have issued two tickets, and are trying to issue three more. Those tickets will be written as soon as the owners of the trash cans can be found and personally given their citations.

Staff Writer Scott N. Miller can be reached at 748-2930 or

Vail Daily, Vail Colorado

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