Autopsy results have confirmed that a bear attack killed a well-known elder in the Xaxli'p First Nation whose remains were found last week near Lillooet, B.C.
After Bernice Evelyn Adolph had been reported missing, police dogs found her remains on Thursday near her remote property about 175 kilometres northeast of Vancouver.
There was evidence that Adolph, 72, had been partially consumed by bears, but before the autopsy, police were not sure how she died.
"After reviewing the autopsy results, evidence from the scene, and expertise and information provided by conservation officers, the B.C. Coroners Service was able to confirm a bear attack as the cause of her death," spokesman Mark Coleman said in a release on Tuesday.
Coleman said no decision about an inquest had been made.
Tried to enter house
Conservation officers killed four bears Sunday that matched the description of the animal that had fed on the woman.
Samples from the bears were sent to Edmonton for DNA testing to determine which bears were involved in the attack.
Adolph had complained to conservation authorities about bears on her property.
Investigators found evidence that bears had tried to enter her house.
While contact between black bears and humans is common, even in Metro Vancouver, the animals tend to fear humans and fatal attacks are rare.
Two people have died in black bear attacks in B.C. since 2000.