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COUNTY: Cedar County
NEAREST TOWN: between Fairplay and Stockton Missouri
NEAREST ROAD: on shoulder of 32 HWY
OBSERVED: I was driving home from Springfield, Mo to Eldorado Springs, Mo one evening about a month ago. I noticed something in the road ahead of me on 32 HWY and at first I thought it was a bear. I have only seen one bear in my life but I thought it had been hit in the road. When I got closer I realized it was moving near the side of the road, eating out of a trash bag in the ditch. I honked my horn as I approached and thats when it stood up to run away. It wasn't that big maybe 4 or 5 feet tall but it stood on its hind legs and ran off into the field. I stopped and backed my van up to see if I could see into the field with my head lights but didnt see anything. I waited a while until a car came up behind me but never saw it again.
It was dark haired like a bear and I really didnt see its face. I havent told anyone this story for fear of getting laughed at. I know what I saw was no bear. We had a bear kill one of our goats about 6 months ago. I saw that one about 10 feet from me, so I know what they look like.
ALSO NOTICED: I didnt hear a sound
OTHER WITNESSES: no, my daughters were asleep in the back seat and I was driving alone
OTHER STORIES: no , I just hear of bobcats, mountain lions and the ocasional bear in the area
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Just at dark before a rainstorm. I just turned my headlights on before I saw the thing
ENVIRONMENT: Therre was just hay fields on either side of the road with timber in the distance
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Tony Gerard:
I spoke with the witness by phone. She related that the sighting took place at dusk. She had just turned on her headlights. The road was a half mile open stretch. At the closest she was approximately 20 yards away from it. Her impression was that the animal was initially squatting or sitting just on the edge of the pavement facing away from her. The bag was in the grass off of the road. She thought the animal was supporting itself with one arm while going through the trash with the other. It's body build was "like a stocky person with hair- it didn't have much of a neck."
When the creature jumped up and ran it "never stood completely up" but "stayed kind of like a humpbacked person with his shoulders slumped forward" or "like a person in a room with a low ceiling". The arm length was possibly a little longer than an equivalent sized person.
About BFRO Investigator Tony Gerard:
Tony Gerard is a community college biology professor.