Body of Man Likely Dragged by Bear After His Vehicle Crashed Into Woods Off Massachusetts Highway

Kos Temenes
By Kos Temenes
May 8, 2024US News
Body of Man Likely Dragged by Bear After His Vehicle Crashed Into Woods Off Massachusetts Highway
A black bear in a file photo. (Wang He/Getty Images)

A Massachusetts man who was killed in a car crash over the weekend was likely dragged from his car by a bear, according to police.

The man, who was later identified as 31-year-old Daniel Ducharme, was killed after his car crashed on I-91 South on May 5. First responders located the man’s body outside of the car, which had crashed into the woods.

The partially obscured car was spotted by a driver on the side of the road in Hatfield. The driver called the police shortly after 11 a.m, according to a statement by Massachusetts Police spokesman Dave Procopio.

First responders found the man outside the car and noticed a bear in the woods nearby, which led them to determine that the bear had dragged the man’s body away from the car.

“Evidence suggests the bear at some point had made contact with the victim’s body,” according to the police statement.

The circumstances surrounding the crash remain unclear, however, a preliminary investigation revealed that Mr. Ducharme was heading south on I-91 when he lost control of the vehicle.

According to Mr. Procopio, the car veered off the road after hitting the guardrail several times, leading the car to roll down an embankment, into the woodland where it crashed into several trees.

According to officials, the crash was the likely reason for Mr. Ducharme’s death, although authorities are not completely ruling out the possibility that he may have died as a result of being attacked by the bear after the crash.

The crash is believed to have caused his body to be either partially or fully ejected from the vehicle. His body was then dragged away from the car by the bear.

“Evidence and observations at the scene suggest that the man was most likely deceased as a result of the crash,” said Mr. Procopio.

Police further determined that Mr. Ducharme was traveling alone in the vehicle. The bear left the vicinity of the crash while first responders were at the crash site.

Authorities are still investigating what caused Mr Ducharme to lose control of his vehicle. The investigation is ongoing; however, the initial statement and information relating to this case have been removed.

NTD has contacted Massachusetts State Police for further information but did not receive a response by press time.

The community of Hatfield is a town with around 3,000 residents in Hampshire County, located about five miles northeast of Northampton.

The Association Press contributed to this report. 

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