CLINTON TWP. - Food scraps left out for raccoons and possums attracted a black bear, which was shot by a township man who now faces criminal charges, authorities said.

Brian F. Lanza, 25, of Jacob Lane, faces charges of unlawful killing or taking of big game and littering, according to the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

It is illegal in Pennsylvania to kill big-game animals during a closed season, court papers state.

The suspect claimed the adult black bear had been damaging his property, so he shot it in the head with a .308 rifle, authorities said.

Lanza said a pile of food scraps found on the side of the residence, a few feet from the front door, had been left out for raccoons and possums, court papers state.

According to paperwork filed at the office of Magisterial District Judge Ronald Edwards:

Wildlife Conservation Officer James P. McCarthy responded to Lanza's residence after receiving an anonymous tip indicating Lanza may have shot and killed a black bear.

Lanza told the officers there were "lots of bears around" and he shot one. He told the officer the bear had been in his yard when he shot it.

Lanza said he took the bear's carcass "down the road and dumped it into a field."

Lanza showed McCarthy where the decomposing carcass was, in a field on the west side of Elk Lake Drive just north of Coggins Corners.

The suspect then provided a written statement, saying he shot the bear in the head and did not call 911 or the Game Commission.

Lanza told McCarthy the bear had been damaging his property, including to a screen door and a storage trailer.

The officer examined a hole in the trailer, but noted the damage appeared to have been done by someone using a saw.