Animal Christmas
Representational imageReuters

A wild bear entered a shopping mall in Russia's Khabarovsk city on Tuesday and was shot dead by the police after it escaped into a neighbourhood school ground. 

The brown bear was seen running around the empty mall looking for an escape, and the animal finally managed to open the doors with its front paws and run out. 

However, the police chased and shot the bear several times as it made its way to a nearby playground, thus killing the animal before veterinarians arrived on the scene. 

The killing has sparked anger among activists against the police action, and Russia's investigative agency has reportedly opened an inquiry into the police action. 

"First they made it crazy by smoking it out of the mall, then when the animal came out and was defending itself out of fear, they shot it. The police did what was simplest," animal rights activist Natalia Kovalenko was quoted saying by Russian media. 

The bear was reportedly a young adult, about a year old. 

"We can conclude that the inexperienced bear decided to swim across the Amur River in search of a den," head of the state hunting monitoring agency, Andrey Mamayev, was quoted saying by RT.com