The Blaine County Journal News-Opinion - We've Got The County Covered

McCone Co. deer poaching reaches conclusion, one of several involving youths in Region 6


July 25, 2018

The case concerning the poaching of ten deer in McCone Co. last fall has been settled in McCone Co. Justice Court.

Two high school-aged males were found guilty on multiple wildlife violations for events that took place on Oct. 15, 2017, prior to the opening of general deer season.

In this case, Region 6 Game Wardens confirmed a total of ten dead deer, most of which were shot with a shotgun using loads typically used for pheasants. The deer were found scattered over two miles near road 528 in northern McCone Co., on the north end of the Remuda Twitchell BMA, about 10 miles east of Hwy 24. A local resident reported the dead deer early the following morning.

Due to people coming forward with good information, the individuals responsible were quickly identified and interviewed. 35 citations were issued to the two individuals, including hunting during a closed season and waste of game animals. The case just recently closed, however, as the court process took some time.

McCone County Justice Court has ordered the one individual to pay $6,810 in fines, $2600 in restitution, and four years loss of hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges.

McCone County Justice Court has ordered the second individual to pay $5,960 in fines, $1,450 in restitution, and three years loss of hunting fishing, and trapping privileges.

Valley Co. deer

An incident that took place in Valley Co. in December of 2017 has also been resolved. In this case, a high school-aged male shot, killed and wasted a doe, fawn, and white-tailed buck near the Milk River just west of Glasgow. 12 citations were issued, including illegal use of artificial light, hunting during a closed season, and waste of game animals.

Valley Co. Justice Court has ordered the individual to pay $910 fines, $1,100 restitution, take remedial hunter education, and five years loss of hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges.

Youth and fish and wildlife infractions

These cases, and others in the past, demonstrate that youth are held accountable for their actions involving crimes with fish and wildlife violations.

The youth involved in the previously mentioned cases had taken hunter education and are considered fully certified hunters in the state of Montana. Hunter education gives students the skills and knowledge that are required to become a safe, ethical and responsible hunter in the state of Montana.

In 2015, four college-aged individuals were charged in Hill Co. Justice Court for violations that resulted in the killing of eight buck deer in Hill County in Sept. and Oct. of 2015. In addition to over $7,000 in fines and restitution, three of those individuals lost their hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges for life.

In another incident in 2015, a 19-year-old male individual was charged with violations involving killing a trophy white-tailed buck near the town of Fort Peck. He was charged with hunting from a public highway, unlawful possession and transportation of a game animal, using a rifle in a weapons-restriction area, and ordered to pay over $1,000 in fines and restitution and loss of hunting and trapping privileges for two years.

“Region 6 Game Wardens hope that cases like these will open the eyes of both youth and adult hunters,” said Glasgow-area Game Warden Todd Tryan. “If you choose to abuse the privileges to pursue the abundant fish and game that Montana offers, you will be held accountable.”

Anyone with information about crimes involving fish, wildlife or park regulations is encouraged to call FWP’s 24-hour wildlife tip line at 1-800-TIP-MONT (1-800-847-6668). Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward up to $1,000 for providing information that leads to a conviction.


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