Game Law Violations

Report from California

A Shasta County man has begun serving a three-year, eight-month prison sentence for a variety of crimes that included holding a black bear in a steamy, feces-laden steel culvert trap for eight days in the summer of 1999.

Shasta County Superior Court Judge Wilson Curle handed the prison term on September 21 to a 48-year-old man from Shasta Lake City. He pleaded guilty in July to charges that included felony animal cruelty and misdemeanor counts of illegal take of a bear.

Department of Fish and Game warden Dan Fehr said wardens, armed with tips from citizens, used two days of intense investigation to locate the trapped, 200-pound bear near a mountain cabin north of Shasta Lake. Wardens fed the thirsty animal four gallons of water before it was turned loose, Fehr said.

The anonymous callers told Fish and Game that the man was keeping the bear in the culvert trap pending the opening of the archery bear hunting season. He reportedly was feeding it a mixture of grain and vegetables, including peppers.

Judge Curle also ordered the trap, a rifle, two shotguns, a revolver and two "BB" guns forfeited to the DFG.

Report from Montana

TIP-MONT, the "crime stoppers" program managed by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, offers substantial rewards to callers who report valuable information on natural resource crimes. If the information leads to an arrest, the caller may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.

Callers who observe a crime involving big game, fish and vandalism in parks may call 1-800-TIP-MONT (1-800-847-6668) telephone line to make a report. Another option is to call the local FWP warden or sheriff's office or to visit the FWP site at

Some of the most valuable calls are those placed immediately after the crime occurs, giving accurate, detailed information that helps wardens investigate the crime and identify the criminal. Callers may remain anonymous, if they choose.

Here are some tips to help make a TIP-MONT call a call that gets results.
• When it appears a violation has occurred, gather as many facts as possible and try to write the information down immediately.
• Where and at what time did the violation happen?
• What is the physical description of the people involved, including approximate weight, height, hair color and description of clothing worn when the suspected violation took place.
• Describe any licensed vehicles involved and, if at all possible, get a license plate number, OHV number, boat hull number or plane number.
• Describe any physical evidence, what and where it is. Do not attempt to move, collect or touch evidence as that may make it inadmissible in court or destroy other significant evidence only apparent to a trained investigator.
• Describe any other witnesses and provide detailed information if possible, including phone numbers and addresses.

Protecting Montana's valuable resources is our collective responsibility, and the TIP-MONT hotline is a quick and easy way to help provide that protection.

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