There’s already been a slew of poaching incidents across the U.S. the last few weeks as the rut kicks into gear. Now, two men have pleaded guilty to illegally shooting two big bucks in early October in Pratt County, Kansas.
A press release announces 20-year-old Hunter Bottcher of Pratt Kansas and 20-year-old Samuel Hawieson of Sedalia, Missouri, pled guilty last week to seven different wildlife crimes and will now have to pay $18,200 in fines and an additional $4,361.06 in restitution.
The Pratt Tribune further reports the two men were sentenced to 60 days in jail and 12 months of supervised probation.
Game warden Jason Harrold caught the two men during an investigation of a headless buck that a resident called in. The two poachers pled guilty to hunting with the aid of a motor vehicle and use of an artificial light.
They also pled guilty to not having deer tags and using illegal ammunition. The men were using full metal jacket ammo, which is illegal for hunting deer in Kansas.
The large size of the fine is because the deer had a spread of more than 16 inches. More and more poachers have been facing larger fines due to trophy-size animal definitions that call for stricter penalties in some states.
The poachers not only lost all the equipment they used in the crime, but also hunting privileges in 47 states.