Citizen’s tip needed to catch a poacher

This 10-point buck was illegally shot with a crossbow on a township road in Chippewa County along the Minnesota River between Montevideo and Granite Falls. Hunters discovered it about 20 yards from the road on the opening weekend of the deer firearm season.

MONTEVIDEO — A citizen’s tip helped put authorities on the trail that busted a deer poaching ring operating in the area in the fall of 2009. It led to guilty pleas from nine individuals in 2010.

The main suspects drove back roads in Renville, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, Yellow Medicine and Brown counties at night and used a crossbow mounted with a searchlight to kill deer. An eight-point buck was among the poached animals confiscated by conservation officers in the case.

Conservation officers are again hoping that help from citizens will lead to the arrest of the person or persons responsible for using a crossbow to kill a 10-point buck along the Minnesota River on Palmer Creek Road between Montevideo and Granite Falls in Chippewa County.

Minnesota Conservation Officer Ed Picht of Montevideo said hunters found the buck on the opening weekend of the firearm season. It was about 20 yards from the road, an arrow from a crossbow embedded in its spine.

The buck had been dead for a few days or perhaps as much as a week when discovered. Picht said he suspects the person or persons responsible shot the deer while driving around at night. Since the deer was discovered away from the road, it’s possible they may not have realized they fatally shot it. Or, they may have been spooked or scared away by something and fled before recovering their illegal kill.

A photo of the deer was posted by the Montevideo Police Department on its Facebook page, and it has caused a lot of buzz and discussion among hunters, noted Picht. It’s upsetting to see a trophy buck killed and wasted like this.

Citizen help has proven effective in stopping this type of activity in the area before, and can again.

Anyone with any information is encouraged to contact Picht at 320-269-6230 or the Turn In Poachers hotline 1-800-652-9093. Callers can remain anonymous, and TIP offers cash rewards for information leading to an arrest.

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