Wildlife officers discovered a gruesome deer pile last Saturday on an undeveloped state road in Swansboro, North Carolina.
The deer pile included more than a dozen deer and two geese. Wildlife officials investigating the case told the Jacksonville Daily News they believe the decaying animals were illegally disposed on the roadside by poachers.
Image via: John Althouse / The Daily News
"I don't consider people who do this to be hunters," Sgt. Charles Smith of the N.C. Wildlife Commission said. "They're criminals."
Smith also said that illegal hunting and poaching in the area where the deer pile was found has become more commonplace in recent years.
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The Jacksonville Daily News reported that a man who lives in a neighborhood a mile from the deer pile discovered a pool of blood in a vacant lot 150 feet near his home the morning before the pile was found. The man said he heard gunshots outside his house in days prior to finding the pool of blood. That discovery led him to believe that the shots were fired by illegal hunters.
"Those bullets could've hit my home and hurt me or my wife or my grandchildren," the man told the Daily News.
Hunting past 30 minutes after sunset is illegal in North Carolina.
Wildlife officers are asking anyone with information related to the case to contact the North Carolina Wildlife Commission at 1-800-662-7137.