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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Washington wildlife police ask public to help solve elk poaching case

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is dedicated to preserving, protecting and perpetuating the state’s fish and wildlife resources, according to the agency’s webpage.  (WDFW)
Staff Reports

From staff reports

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is asking the public for help to solve a poaching case involving three bull elk outside Fairfield.

Two bulls were illegally killed, heads removed, and the meat wasted, on or around the weekend of Dec. 31. A third bull elk was shot, left injured and paralyzed in the frozen conditions. The animals were illegally shot in a privately owned field off east Adams and Marsh roads, approximately 5 miles from the Idaho border, according to an agency news release.

“This is an appalling act of poaching large, branch-antlered elk - a blatant disrespect of natural resource rules, ethics and conservation,” WDFW Police Sergeant Tony Leonetti said in an agency news release.

The animals were found Sunday by a witness who reported it to WDFW Police. The paralyzed elk was humanely lethally dispatched, and the two headless bodies were recovered by officers.

“The loss of these mature elk is a blow to the local population and for future opportunities for ethical hunters who are following the rules,” Leonetti said.

“We rely on tips from the public as they are often our eyes and ears that lead to arrests on cases like this.”

The department asks anyone with information on this case to report . People can call 877-933-9847, email WDFW’s poaching tip line or send a text tip to 847411. The public can also report online on WDFW’s website.

Tips can be provided anonymously.

A monetary reward or bonus points toward special hunts are available for information leading to an arrest.