City Desk

Homicide Watch Platform Finds New Quarry: Bears

 

After power coverage of the sordid world of Washington murder, the web platform behind Homicide Watch could get even more badass by going after North America's greatest beast: the grizzly bear.

Yellowstone Gate, a news site that covers Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Park and the towns around them, has applied for a $35,000 Knight News Challenge grant to create Grizzly Watch, a site based on Homicide Watch's code. Grizzly Watch would compile data from different government agencies to monitor individual bears.

All is not well in Yellowstone, according to Yellowstone Gate editor Ruffin Prevost. He writes in an email that the need for accurate reporting on bears is critical after two fatal bear-on-human attacks in the park last year.

Instead of sorting data by victims and suspects, the bear site would match grizzlies with their encounters with people, says Homicide Watch founder Laura Amico. This is the first time the platform will be used to cover a topic besides homicides.

Amico said she and her husband Chris Amico were surprised when Prevost approached them about Grizzly Watch.

"We were like, 'Wait a minute, this could be really cool,'" says Amico.

Photo of grizzly bear via Shutterstock

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