Game Law Violations


Poacher Roundup

• Provided with information about deer poaching at a Tuolumne County apple orchard, Warden Nicholas staked out the location during the archery deer opener. Shortly after his arrival, he heard two shots. Warden Nicholas quickly drove around the bend in the road and saw a subject with a rifle. When the man saw the Fish and Game truck, he quickly shoved the gun into the back seat where his young son was sitting. After contacting the man, the young boy told Warden Nicholas that his dad was going to kill a deer. Warden Nicholas asked the boy how his dad was going to kill the deer. The boy said that he was going to do it with the gun. The rifle was a .22 caliber, and there were expended .22 caliber cartridges on the floorboard of the vehicle. The subject was cited for a variety of violations.

• A major poaching case from Mariposa County was closed in Mariposa Superior Court. Wardens Milazzo and Grove investigated reports of Greely Hill residents taking numerous deer in the fall. As a result, a search warrant was secured for their residence. Three men were charged with numerous fish and game violations. One of the suspects pleaded guilty to cultivation and possession of marijuana, and unlawful firearm sale/transfer, using the deer tags of another, two counts of unlawful take of deer, unlawful possession of deer, and two deer tag violations. The court imposed 270 days in jail, a $5,000 fine and three years probation. During his probation, the man may not hunt or be with anyone while they are hunting, may not possess any deadly weapon and is subject to search and seizure of his person or residence at any time. The other two suspects, the first man's brother and father, were given fines totaling more than $1,000 and were placed on three years and one year probation respectively.

• Warden Arnold observed a spotlight working out of the driver's window of a slow-moving vehicle in an area that has had numerous reports of night hunting. After initiating a vehicle stop and subsequent inspection, he found an assault weapon, handgun, combat fighting knife with metal spikes, a hearing device, night vision equipment, predator calls and a warm spotlight. The subject stated that he was only looking for his brother's campsite and not hunting.

• Wardens conducted a checkpoint near Pine Flat Reservoir in Fresno County on the opening day of band-tail pigeon season and inspected a total of 37 vehicles for compliance with Fish and Game regulations. One overlimit of gray squirrels was the only Fish and Game violation encountered as they dominated the overall game take. Very few pigeons were taken by local hunters. The hunters contacted during the checkpoint were all very cooperative and supportive of the operation.

• Warden Milazzo responded to a report of spotlighting in Mariposa County. Upon arriving, he found that a Sheriff's Deputy had already stopped the suspects. He cited three suspects from the Oakhurst area for spotlighting and seized their firearms and archery equipment. These same suspects have been implicated in a number of violations in the Oakhurst area involving spotlighting and out-of-season deer kills during the past several years. One of the suspects was cited several years ago by Wardens H. Spada and Olague for illegally taking a deer in the Coarsegold area of Madera County.

• Warden Miller cited a repeat offender along the Merced River for waterfowl violations. The suspect was the object of several violations reports and at least one prior citation. Warden Miller contacted the suspect as he was hunting geese along the river using lead 0 buckshot, #1 buckshot and BB shot. The suspect was once again cited, and the evidence was seized.

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