Darsh Patel, the 22-year-old Rutgers student who was mauled to death by a black bear in New Jersey in September, was taking photos of the bear with his cell phone just before the attack, according to NJ Advance Media. A public records request submitted by the local news organization returned five photographs taken with the young man's cell phone from no farther away than 100 feet. The phone, which was recovered with Patel's body, was also damaged by the bear.
In October, hikers in the Lake Tahoe area were warned about taking selfies with bears at Taylor Creek, an area where the bruins gather in the fall to feed on spawning trout. Black bears are generally considered less likely to attack humans than the larger grizzly bears, which are making a comeback in the northern Rockies.