"Chris Puett told investigators the cubs' mother had charged toward him on his property and he was forced to shoot her.

"He told us he had shot the mother bear in self-defense and the mother bear ran off, leaving the cubs behind," Foy told the LA Times. "He apparently kept the cubs for a couple of days, then made his decision."

Puett said he wanted to find the bears a good home, so he brought them to the Sierra Super Stop in a cage hoping to find takers."