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Man accused of illegally shooting Wyoming grizzly bear pleads not guilty

Posted at 2:36 PM, May 22, 2023

Cody- The man who reportedly admitted he killed a grizzly bear pleaded not guilty in District Court in Cody Friday.

The bear was found shot May 1, about 16 miles east of Yellowstone National Park. Now, there is a small rock memorial near where the 530-pound male bear was found just 90 feet off the highway.

Court records say Game Warden Travis Crane got a call on May 2 from Wapiti resident Patrick Gogerty, who reportedly said he saw the grizzly 100 yards off the highway when he was black bear hunting the first day of the season, May 1.

According to Crane’s affidavit, Gogerty said he was confident the grizzly was a black bear because he couldn’t see a hump on its back, and told Crane he shot at the bear seven times.

Wildlife photographer and 30-year Cody resident Amy Gerber was the first the speak out against the killing. At first, she did not know it was a case of a black bear hunter’s mistaken identity.

“It’s been an interesting couple of weeks….I feel good that the man turned himself in,” she said.

Gogerty told the district judge Friday he did not have a lawyer. The judge told him he should get one, and released him on his own recognizance. The judge then entered a not guilty plea for Gogerty and set his trial date for next October.