This is what you get when you try to skirt the law.
Most hunters are well aware that once you pull the trigger on a deer, you don't get that bullet back. Once your tag is filled, that is it.
In the state of Ohio, deer-hunting licenses come with a one buck rule. For Junior L. Troyer, an Ohio native and a member of the Amish community, that rule had little merit.
As the story goes, he went deer hunting on the morning of November 7 and shot a decent 8-point buck in Coshocton County. Later that evening while still hunting for does, a much larger buck walked out in front of him. Troyer pulled the trigger, poaching a 26-point monster in the process.
The next morning is where things get tricky. Per the Coshocton Tribune report, Troyer cut off the head of the eight-point buck and checked in the body of that deer with the head of the 26-pointer, trying to pass the Frankensteined animal as his one and only buck. Then, he took the headless body of the 26-pointer and checked that in tagged as a doe. He decided he didn't need the head of the eight-point anymore, so he allegedly went and through that a ditch.
That equated to one massively antlered deer, one smaller buck, only one valid tag for such a harvest, a mash up of deer parts, and one big bucket of false information.
Brilliant plan, right? Well, unfortunately for Junior Troyer of Millersburg (in Holmes County, not far from where the deer was shot), a buck of this caliber tends to be pretty famous to the local hunters in an area. That's how this whole story began to unravel.
News of a proposed dead 26-pointer spread quickly. DNR investigated and found one at a taxidermist who then lead authorities back to Troyer. You can read how it all went down on WoodburyOutfitters.com.
Some good old sleuthing on behalf of the local hunting community gave the Amish man everything he had coming to him for poaching one of Ohio's trophy bucks.
All in all, Troyer entered pleas of no contest and was charged with four different game law violations in the matter totaling $150 for each charge, as well as $87 in court costs. Oh, and the judge also fined Troyer $28,000 in restitution to the state (determined via the value of the deer), as well as 60 days in jail if the fines went unpaid.
As of the writing of this article, all fines were paid promptly and the jail time was suspended, according to Coshocton Municipal Court records. Troyer's hunting privileges, however, have been banned for one year.
Let it be a lesson: Hunting crimes don't ever pay off.
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