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FATHER, SON ARRESTED FOR SHOOTING BIG BUCK IN TOWN
11/16/2007 By: Carole McWilliams
A Colorado Springs father and son were issued Colorado Division of Wildlife citations on Nov. 8 after killing a large buck in Bayfield, thanks to the help of some locals who saw it happen.
Local CDOW officer Drayton Harrison said Wayne Anderson and his 17-year-old son were cited for hunting in a careless manner and for illegal possession of wildlife. Additional charges are pending.
Harrison said Tuesday he was taking the incident reports to the
Controlled burns in the Beaver Meadows area made for
some pretty sunrises and sunsets earlier
this month,including this morning view
on Beaver Meadows Road eastof Bayfield.
District Attorney’s Office for decisions on any other charges.
The buck was shot behind the vacant Valiant Chair Factory building, Harrison said. The father and son had hunting licenses and were here for that purpose, but Harrison said, “I wouldn’t really call them hunters.”
He continued, “It was a serious lapse of judgment. They are lucky the bullet didn’t hit somebody.” Harrison said the son was the shooter, but the father encouraged him. Harrison speculated that they were driving by and just happened to see the buck.
In a press release CDOW said that about 10 a.m. on Nov. 8, “some Bayfield residents saw a man in a field near a developed area just south of US Highway 160 near the Shell gas station. Witnesses reported that the man shot a large 6-by-6 mule deer buck that was walking across a light industrial lot.”
The men then left the scene. The buck was one of several that seem to live in or near town year-round.
“Witnesses followed the men’s vehicle, wrote down the license plate number and a vehicle description, and then called the Bayfield Marshal’s Office,” the press release said. Marshal’s deputies found the suspects and held them until CDOW officers arrived.
“This incident really shows how much the Division of Wildlife relies on citizens and other law enforcement agencies to help solve crimes against wildlife,” said CDOW Area Wildlife Manager Patt Dorsey.
Harrison said both witnesses are Bayfield residents who are experienced hunters “who knew this wasn’t right.”
Dorsey said, “Unfortunately it’s not the good guys like our witnesses that make the news. Poor hunter behavior makes the rest of the hunter community look bad.”
Dorsey also said, “If law enforcement can get good information, there’s a great chance we can apprehend violators. There’s no doubt it would have been more difficult to make this case without the help of alert citizens.”
Dorsey compared this case to the killing of a buck in Durango’s Greenmount Cemetery in 2005. In both cases, the big bucks were treasured by local residents, and CDOW was helped in solving the case by information provided by the public.
The suspects in last week’s shooting will have to appear in court and could pay up to $2,000 in fines plus face suspension of their hunting and fishing privileges.
Poaching is a year-round problem in Colorado, but it happens most in late fall when mule deer enter breeding stage and bucks’ antlers are fully developed. During breeding season, the deer are often in highly visible places and gather in groups, the CDOW says.
Anyone who sees suspicious activity along roads where deer are nearby is asked to call DOW at 375-0855, local law enforcement, the State Patrol, or Operation Game Thief at (877) 265-6648.
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