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Young black bear crashes Bakersfield school graduation

A still from footage from an on-campus camera shows a young black bear on the grounds of Ramon Garza Elementary School Thursday, May 31, 2012, during a graduation ceremony.

May 31, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
A young black bear that stumbled upon school property caused a stir during an elementary school graduation ceremony in Bakersfield Thursday.

Hundreds of students and parents gathered at Ramon Garza Elementary School for the outdoor ceremony. The 3-year-old bear was spotted by a teacher, who alerted officials. The sighting also forced children into classrooms.

The bear tore through two adjacent schools then headed for a nearby apartment complex where animal control officers subdued him with a stun gun. They took him into the mountains by truck and set him free.

Authorities believe the 125-pound bear might have followed the Kern River into town looking for water.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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