April 24, 2014

Elyria
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Sam Mazzola charged; failed to keep proper records on animals, state says

Sam Mazzola

Sam Mazzola

ELYRIA — Sam Mazzola — the owner of a bear that fatally mauled caretaker Brent Kandra — has been charged with violating a state law that requires him to keep track of the animals he owns.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources Investigator Jarod Roof said Mazzola failed to keep proper records about what animals he had in his possession, a requirement for the type of animal license he has.

Under the state law, Mazzola is required to keep count of animals native to Ohio in his possession, including bears, raccoons and skunks, Roof said.

Mazzola is also under investigation by Lorain County Sheriff’s deputies, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, investigations that grew out of the Aug. 19 mauling of the 24-year-old Kandra at Mazzola’s North Marks Road compound in Columbia Township. The bear that killed Kandra has since been euthanized, according to Mazzola.

Mazzola said today that he doesn’t dispute that his paperwork might not have been in order, but he placed the blame for that on confusing new paperwork that the state began requiring three years ago.

Read Tuesday’s Chronicle for more on this story.