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Ohio officials say they can't force owner of bear that killed caretaker to relinquish his exotic animals

September 8, 2010 |  8:32 pm

Mazzola COLUMBIA STATION, Ohio — Officials in the Cleveland suburb where a captive bear killed a man say they can't force the bear's owner to give up his exotic animals.

Columbia Township trustees responded Tuesday night to concerns raised by neighbors of Sam Mazzola. One woman living near Mazzola's property told the trustees that she worries about safety if the animals ever got out. Another said Mazzola's menagerie makes a lot of noise.

The Plain Dealer reports that Mazzola did not speak during the meeting but said afterward that he has no plans to get any more animals.

One of his bears fatally mauled a caretaker on Aug. 19. The man's mother wrote Gov. Ted Strickland on Tuesday saying she supports an exotic pet ban for Ohio.

Besides bears, Mazzola also has tigers, wolves and a lion.

RELATED BEAR NEWS:
Ohio property owner gives eviction notice to owner of bear that killed its caretaker
Humane Society of the United States urges South Carolina to ban practice of 'bear baying'

-- Associated Press

Photo: Mazzola on Aug. 20. Credit: Mark Duncan / Associated Press

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