Cocaine Bear | True Story of an Infamous Kentucky Incident


In 1985, a bizarre incident took place in the mountains of Kentucky that left many people scratching their heads. A black bear stumbled upon a stash of cocaine worth millions of dollars and consumed it, resulting in its death. The incident gained nationwide attention, and the bear became known as the “Cocaine Bear”. In this article, we will delve into the true story of the Cocaine Bear and explore the events that led up to its untimely demise.

Name“Pablo EskoBear” (also known as “Cocaine Bear”)
SpeciesAmerican black bear
Cause of deathDrug overdose
BackgroundIn 1985, a small plane carrying drugs (including over 70 pounds of cocaine) crashed in the Chattahoochee National Forest in Georgia, USA. Pablo EskoBear found and consumed some of the cocaine, leading to his death from an overdose.
DiscoveryTwo drug smugglers were flying the plane when it crashed. They were later apprehended and sentenced to prison. Pablo EskoBear’s body was found by authorities during the investigation.
LegacyPablo EskoBear has become a popular cultural icon, with references to him appearing in movies, TV shows, and music. In 2021, a movie based on his story was announced, titled “Cocaine Bear” and directed by Elizabeth Banks.
Cocaine Bear

The Origins of the Cocaine Stash

The story of the Cocaine Bear begins with a man named Andrew Thornton II, a former narcotics officer turned drug smuggler. In 1985, Thornton was flying a plane from Colombia to the United States, carrying a shipment of drugs worth millions of dollars. However, his plan went awry when he accidentally dropped several duffel bags full of cocaine over the Chattahoochee National Forest in Georgia.

The Bear Encounter

Several days after the drop, the Cocaine Bear stumbled upon the stash while foraging for food. It consumed a large quantity of the drugs and soon began exhibiting erratic behavior. It stumbled through the woods before collapsing and dying from a drug overdose. Its lifeless body was discovered by a group of hikers several days later.

The Aftermath

The discovery of the Cocaine Bear’s body sparked an investigation into the origins of the cocaine stash. Authorities eventually traced the drugs back to Thornton and several of his accomplices. In the ensuing investigation, several members of Thornton’s drug trafficking ring were arrested and sentenced to lengthy prison terms

The Legend of the Cocaine Bear

The story of the Cocaine Bear quickly became legendary in the years that followed. Its bizarre demise and the events that led up to it captured the imaginations of people across the country. The bear’s body was eventually stuffed and put on display at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area Visitor Center, where it remains to this day.

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The story of the Cocaine Bear is one that is both bizarre and tragic. It serves as a reminder of the devastating effects that drugs can have on both humans and animals alike. While the bear’s untimely demise is certainly a unique incident, it is also a cautionary tale about the dangers of drug trafficking and the toll it can take on those involved.


What happened to Andrew Thornton II after the Cocaine Bear incident?

Thornton died shortly after the incident when he accidentally parachuted into a residential neighborhood while attempting to dispose of another shipment of drugs.

How much cocaine did the bear consume?

The exact amount of cocaine consumed by the bear is unknown, but it is believed to have been several pounds.

Was anyone else injured or killed in the incident?

No humans were injured or killed as a result of the Cocaine Bear incident.

What happened to the other members of Thornton’s drug trafficking ring?

Several members of the ring were arrested and sentenced to lengthy prison terms.

Where can I see the Cocaine Bear’s stuffed body?

The Cocaine Bear’s body is on display at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area Visitor Center.