US Poacher Gets a Year of Watching Bambi in Jail
Poaching offences are taken very seriously in the states. One Missouri judge has added some extra punishment to this serial poachers sentence.
The Springfield News-Leader reported David Berry Jr. was ordered to watch the Walt Disney movie at least once each month during his year-long jail sentence in what conservation agents are calling one of the largest deer poaching cases in state history.
Prosecutors say the deer were killed for their heads, with their bodies left to rot.
Berry was convicted in southwest Missouri's Lawrence County of illegally taking wildlife. Three relatives and another man also were caught in connection to the poaching case.
Berry also was sentenced to 120 days in jail in nearby Barton County for a firearms probation violation.
These convictions were made with information obtained from Operation Game Thief, a hotline sponsored by the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Conservation Federation of Missouri.
“It is unknown how many deer the main group of suspects has taken illegally over the past several years,” Lawrence County Conservation Agent Andy Barnes said. “It would be safe to say that several hundred deer were taken illegally.”
To date, this group of poachers has paid $151,000 in bonds and $51,000 in fines and court costs and collectively served 33
days in jail.
"In situations like this, with serial poachers who have no regard for the animals, rules of fair chase, or aren’t bothered by the fact that they’re stealing from others, it’s all about greed and ego," said Randy Doman, MDC Protection Division Chief.
"Taking just the heads is their version of obtaining a 'trophy' and leaving the carcass behind is merely an afterthought. While there are some cases where poachers go after the antlers for profit, with this bunch it was more about the thrill of the kill itself."