Bear Mauls 15-Year-Old Boy as He Watches TV in Arizona: ‘Got Him on the Nose and the Cheek’

Brigham Hawkins was attacked at his family's cabin on May 23

<p>Getty Images</p> A black bear

Getty Images

A black bear

A 15-year-old boy is recovering from injuries after being attacked twice by a bear in Arizona.

Brigham Hawkins was mauled across the face and body by a bear in a surprise attack while watching TV at his family cabin in Alpine, Arizona, at night on Thursday, May 23, the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD) said in a news release.

The bear had made its way through an open door of the cabin towards the teenager, where it “proceeded to swipe at him from behind,” according to the release.

“It then left the cabin and approached other family members before entering the cabin a second time and swiping at the victim’s arm,” AZGFD said.

<p>Getty</p> A black bear


A black bear

Related: Hiker Played Dead While Being Mauled by Grizzly Bear, Who May Have Been Protecting Cub

The bear, which was cited to be a 3-year-old male, was killed 120 feet from the cabin by officers from the department shortly after they arrived at the scene, KCTV reported.

Hawkins was then taken to the hospital and treated for his injuries.

A photo released of the teen after the attack showed him with bloody gashes and cuts on his nose and cheek as well as on the inside of his elbow.

The teenager's mother Carol shared that her son has a rare neurological disorder, making it hard for him to move quickly, as the bear approached him a second time, per Arizona Family.

<p>Getty Images</p> The Apache and Sitgreaves National Forest near Alpine, Arizona

Getty Images

The Apache and Sitgreaves National Forest near Alpine, Arizona

Related: 35-Year-Old Man Seriously Injured After ‘Surprise’ Grizzly Bear Attack in Grand Teton National Park 

“Never in our wildest dreams did we think (a bear) would come in the home,” she told the outlet. “He hadn’t realized it because it came in from behind, and it reached over and, like, swiped at his face twice. Got him on the nose and the cheek and then went ahead and got his forehead and the top of his head.”

Hawkins was saved by his father and older brother Parker in the incident as they chased the bear away, per KCTV.

“It was thanks to the quick reaction by his brother and his family that they were able to distract the bear from what very easily in a matter of seconds could have turned into a real tragedy there,” AZGFD Law Enforcement Supervisor, Shawn Wagner, told Arizona Family.

Hawkins was put on the rabies vaccine as a precaution and “is expected to recover,” per the outlet.

“Everybody that came into help him, he had a big thank you and so he’s handling it well. And he’ll be okay,” Carol said.

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This is the 16th bear attack in Arizona since 1990, AZGFD stated, per the release. Two of these were fatal and the most recent attack happened last year in Prescott.

AZGFD has reminded the public to be "bear aware" and look out for the wildlife animals in their area, following the latest incident, per the release.

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