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Case File  #25   October 2009

A Convicted Felon Hunting Over Bait

In late October of 2009, Warden Rick Ouellette received an Operation Game Thief complaint of a tree stand in Hermon that was baited with apples and corn in an attempt to attract deer. Accompanied by Warden Josh Tibbetts, both wardens traveled to the scene and located a poacher sitting in the tree stand with a firearm overlooking the baited area. The wardens directed the poacher to unload his rifle and come down from the stand. As Warden Ouellette was watching the person come down from the stand, Warden Tibbetts noted that the apples placed on the ground appeared to be of different varieties with no apple trees located anywhere. Cracked corn was also spread on the ground in front of the tree stand.

Once the poacher exited the tree stand, he finally admitted that he had made a poor decision to have been sitting over the baited apples. The poacher accompanied the wardens back to their truck where a record check of the poacher was performed with the State Police by radio. Records indicated that the poacher was a convicted felon and was prohibited from possessing firearms. The poacher was charged with Hunting Over Bait and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. The poacher paid a $500 fine for Hunting Over Bait, a $500 fine for Possession of a Firearm by a Felon and forfeited the firearm, a 30-.06 scoped rifle.

Operation Game Thief made this case possible .... and wardens were able to remove from the woods a poacher who had no business carrying a firearm and could not have cared less that he was violating Maine's fish and wildlife laws.


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