Ohio Hunter Triggers International Outrage With YouTube Video Of Speared Bear

We recently followed the controversy over the shooting of “Cecil the Lion” by an American dentist Walter Palmer from Minnesota. There were other trophy hunting stories that enraged people around the world. (here and here and here). Now, a trophy hunter appears to be vying with Palmer as the most hated man on the Internet after he filmed and posted his killing of a black bear with a homemade spear. Josh Bowman has been denounced around the world for his video from Alberta, Canada as he celebrated the slow killing of the bear.


Bowmar, 26, is a bodybuilder and a former All-American javelin thrower at Heidelberg University who apparently dreamed of stabbing a bear to death with a spear. The Columbus, Ohio native is shown with the dead bear with its intestines falling out of its stomach. He is shown dancing and cheering the kill. Other hunters have denounced him for a kill that might have taken up to 20 hours for the bear to finally die.

Bowmar killed the bear a day after his wife Sarah killed another bear with a rifle. Bowmar can be seen gleefully celebrating what must have been an prolonged death of this bear, saying “I just did something I don’t think anybody in the world has ever done.” There may be a reason for that. Hunters have said that they are disgusted by the videotape and Bowmar’s thrill kill.

Bowman was able to lure the bear with the help of guides John and Jenny Rivet, who run livinthedreamproductions and features scores of dead black bears and other animals on their website. I will admit that I have never understood trophy hunters. I have been a hiker and backpacker for decades and love seeing bear in the wild. I could not imagine seeing such majestic animals in the wild and then wanting to kill it to some how possess it for myself. I recently discussed how the famed East Pack of Denali National Park has been likely lost after a hunter waited just outside the park to shoot the last male from the pack. Nevertheless, I know many hunters who are some of the most serious environmentalists and respect their sport. However, the glee of slicing open the stomach of a bear makes most hunters and non-hunters recoil.

Here is the video:

84 thoughts on “Ohio Hunter Triggers International Outrage With YouTube Video Of Speared Bear”

  1. What is very telling is the condemnation from other hunters. They are disgusted with the use of an inefficient method when better are available and his psychotic celebration screams.

    So many humans claim superiority of the slush between their ears when they are using methods no better than our ancestors that grunted. Killing for predator “control” is a farce to make revenue from those that enjoy killing. Hawaii had a feral pig problem. After exhausting the low hanging fruit of savagery, they decided to use the fruit of evolution and baited contraception stations. Now the population is under control and the territories claimed by the pigs are not under constant challenge. As in most things, follow the money.

  2. I read the article from Alberta, and about the death threats this guy got for doing something that was perfectly legal and moral. Then there was one person who made specific credible death threats which should be investigated by the police and the person responsible put on trial and locked up for many years. This is a REAL crime, and it is too bad that so many here are willing to ignore a REAL crime in order to pursue an innocent man because they don’t like his sport. I hope that those who object to this killing will at least support law and the rule of law and demand with EQUAL fervor the investigation and prosecution of their CRIMINAL cohorts. Now THAT would be REAL justice, but I suspect that the animal rights types don’t have consistency and logic as part of their character.

  3. “Not making up stuff to force your case.” LOL! You can’t make that up!!!

  4. For a legal blog, I am astounded at how poorly most posters perform since they make up things that are not in evidence. First off, according to the video, we have NO idea of how long it took for the bear to die since it started raining heavily and was dark which is why they could not follow the blood trail to ensure the kill. They had to wait until morning before they could resume the search. I doubt that a forensic pathologist did an autopsy to confirm the time of death. Given the size of the spear, and the depth of the wound, I doubt the bear lasted very long. So it probably died a short while after being speared. The FACT is that even with high powered rifles, a single shot does not kill instantly in many or most cases. Deer hunters have been seriously wounded when they rush to a deer that went down with the first shot, and then got up and tore the hunter a new one as they came up to it.

    So the only objection that has any validity to it at all is those who object to hunting on some grounds. The outcry is mostly about killing wild life, not this which to all that I saw and know was perfectly LEGAL and moral. Address that please and make your arguments accordingly, not making up stuff to force your case.

  5. I quit hunting when I was a teenager. I detest trophy hunting with a high powered rifle because the hunter risks nothing, clean kill or not. Killing an animal at long distance is gutless. But, culling of predators is sometimes necessary.

    I have much more respect for hunters that use primitive weapons such as (from from least to most primitive),
    Shotgun, Black powder, Compound bow, Longbow, Spear, Club, Knife, Fists.

    Of course primitive weapons have a greater chance of wounding, resulting in a protracted death. Are we going to ban fishing with lures because they only wound the fish? Oh, that’s right, fish are cold blooded and don’t feel pain.

  6. Autumn:

    “Why wouldn’t I have the right to die if I am suffering and just running up medical bills all for naught?” I agree, but it must be a personal choice.

    My grandmother died of Alzheimers. It was the most awful, terrifying, lingering, tortuous death I’ve ever seen. And she was the sweetest most caring person. She took care of everybody. Forgetting people’s names is just the beginning. They move on to feeling lost and terrified 24/7, to not being able to understand any language, to finally forgetting how to swallow. I know someone who’s wife is in the throes of the more advanced stages. He said she used to throw herself on the floor in terror and hold onto his legs, screaming and pleading what was wrong with her and to fix it. Now she’s mostly glassy eyed. It takes years of terror to get to the point where they are past fear and finally get to the starvation and organ shutdown phase.

    1/3 of elderly people will now die of Alzheimers. I would want the torture to end for myself, should I follow that terrible path.

  7. Darren – no kidding.

    You are never supposed to leave a wounded animal, especially a predator. It puts everyone who comes into contact with that animal at risk, as well as prolongs its suffering. You shoot it, you finish it. And you should strive for a clean kill. Leaving it to linger with its guts spilling out is sad.

    I have no idea if this was a nuisance bear, or if the bear population was burgeoning and required culling. I have no idea if there was a good reason to kill the bear, if it was in season or out, or anything about the legality of the hunt. If he ate the meat or let it rot.

    My remarks reference the canned hunt and the inexcusable amount of time the animal suffered.

    There are those who enjoy bow hunting, because it is quiet, harkens back to primal times, and requires more skill. I can understand that appeal. But there is also a greater requirement for skill, because it can be harder to get a clean, fast kill with a bow. I suppose the same holds true for a spear. If you’re going to go spear hunting, you had better be able to make a clean kill.

  8. @Isaac
    .
    I was wondering how you’d work Trump is bad into your post…

    So Trump is a hunter as well as his sons. So what? He’s not breaking any laws unlike his opponent HRC

    He’s killed some big game legally. HRC has killed thousands of people due to her “poor judgement”

  9. @Antonio

    re: euthanasia I am for euthanasia as a personal choice. Why wouldn’t I have the right to die if I am suffering and just running up medical bills all for naught? Both the Netherlands and Switzerland have euthanasia clinics which are doing very well. No one is forced to die but the choice is there for those who wish to end their lives.

  10. To the idiots justifying this…

    Just because an animal is a predator and on rare occasions members of its species kill people does not justify killing it for fun in the most torturous way possible.

  11. A large percentage of our population will not survive a major power grid failure because they won’t be able to hunt for food the only way they know how, at the grocery store.

  12. SJReidhead “Wildlife needs to be culled. Sorry, but it is a fact of life, just like forests need to be cleared. Taking down a bear with a spear is quite an achievement. In certain parts of the country, bears are reaching nuisance proportions, thanks to people who don’t approve of hunting. It is necessary to make sure the populations are controlled or they start killing people. Also, if the populations are not controlled, it is detrimental to the health of the animal, itself.”

    Nature culls the weak, hunters cull the best which works against nature. This “culling” argument must be drilled into thrill kill hunters since birth. It is amazing how nature coped before humans stood on their hind legs. ALL cultures that subsistence hunt ritualized the kill to deal with the cognitive dissonance of killing. ( prayers, dances, totems) Thrill kill hunters are sociopaths.

  13. What SJReidhead, August 16, 2016 at 4:57am, and randyjet, August 16, 2016 at 9:05am said.

    If a bear ever had the chance, it would eat you and everyone you love

    Just watch any of those Alaska wilderness shows; you’ll see.

    In NJ where I had the misfortune of living, misinformed, misguided, hoplophobic residents have demanded laws restricting or banning hunting, which led to:
    – a massive increase in FATAL deer-vehicle motor vehicle collisions;
    – laws forcing homeowners to purchase expensive ‘bear-proof’ garbage cans, and bears walking-down main-street suburbia.

    Insane. Glad I’m out of that socialist hell-hole.

    [In the interest of full disclosure, I am NOT – nor have I ever been – a ‘hunter’; but I, too support PROPER hunting techniques – and no way was this guy doing that.]

  14. JT is a blog hunter and his posts are his weapon. Some posts are a quick kill and some suffer through long, agonizing pain until they simply die of exhaustion. It’s these red meat posts that seem to suffer the most.

  15. Randyjet

    Pathetic, even more pathetic than Paul. He just posts as a lark. He will post anything to get attention. You actually went to some trouble trying to make a case, and still came up well short, fell flat on your face, take your pick.

    This has little if anything to do with the bear. The bear was lured into a trap, to a source of food, where it could be targeted. The guy had backup.

    Now, Davy Crockett supposedly grinned a bear to death. That I could accept.

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