Join Date: Apr 2011
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HOMEWOOD, Calif. — A Pleasanton family's car was taken for a joyride early last month by an unexpected thief — a black bear.
Brian McCarthy, his wife and his teenage son woke about 3:30 a.m. Aug. 7 to the honking horn of their Toyota Prius, which was parked next to their cabin near Homewood.
McCarthy and his wife, Cece, got out of bed and looked out the window and saw a flurry of “fuzzy arms flailing” inside of the car, McCarthy said during a Tuesday phone interview. Grunting noises were also coming from the vehicle, McCarthy said.
Unsure of what to do, the couple went to call sheriff's deputies.
Shortly afterward the McCarthys' 14-year-old son, Dylan, told them the car was no longer in the driveway.
The car had rolled down the steep driveway, across the street and into some boulders before coming to rest against a neighbor's deck, McCarthy said. He estimated the car rolled anywhere from 65 to 80 feet before coming to a stop.
When the McCarthys went outside, the front driver's side door was open and the bear was nowhere to be found, McCarthy said.
“We have no idea how he got in there,” McCarthy said.
He said he could only speculate on how the bear got out of the car, saying the car door may have popped open upon impact.
As for how the bear got moving, McCarthy said the entire gear shift was ripped from the car, possibly leaving the car in no gear whatsoever.
The damage to the interior of the car was extensive, McCarthy said.
“It totally ripped every recognizable piece of the interior out,” McCarthy said. “It was not even recognizable as a vehicle.”
On the bright side, the outside of the vehicle was largely undamaged, McCarthy said. The nine-year-old car is still totaled, McCarthy said.
He said he is dumbfounded as to why the bear wanted in. There was no food in the car at the time of the incident.