Levi Anderson and Hadyn Johnson of Kalispell were both sentenced in Flathead County Justice court recently for poaching 10 whitetail deer in the Farm-to-Market area north of Kalispell in December of 2013. The deer were shot at night, after the general season had ended and left to waste. Levi Anderson pled guilty and was fined $4350, ordered to pay $600 in restitution, and lost his privileges to hunt, fish, and trap in Montana and 44 states in the Interstate Wildlife Violators Compact (IWVC) for 10 years. Johnson also pled guilty and was fined $2,100, and ordered to pay $2,100 in restitution, and lost his hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges for 20 years in Montana and all states in the IWVC.
Also see the related posting Wardens Looking for Tips on Deer Poaching Cases
Wardens investigated several antlerless whitetail deer shot and left to waste in the Farm-to-Market area in December after the general hunting season had ended. On December 20, 2013, at approximately 10:30 pm game wardens Wes Oedekoven and Chris Crane made an investigative stop after hearing shots fired from a vehicle driven by Levi Anderson and Johnson in the area where the deer had been poached. Johnson had an active felony arrest warrant for $50,000 from Oregon and was arrested and turned over to the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office. Levi Anderson was cooperative and gave wardens a detailed account of their illegal activities and took wardens back to the kill sites of one deer shot that night and nine other deer they had shot previously.
FWP Warden Captain Lee Anderson praised wardens Oedekoven and Crane for their hard work on this case, noting that the reason this case came to fruition was the dedication of these two game wardens. Lee Anderson said that they had just wrapped up the long general hunting season and still took the initiative to go out on a cold, dark night in December just before Christmas to catch these individuals. The county attorney’s office worked closely with FWP on this case and the judges handed down a good sentence.
“It is disturbing that a culture still exists that engages in this type of destructive behavior on Montana’s wildlife: says Warden Captain Lee Anderson. “These animals were taken from the people of Montana and left to waste. “
Unfortunately, this poaching activity has continued throughout this past summer and fall. Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks put out a separate news release last week looking for any information on illegal activity in the Farm-to-Market, Kila, Somers, and Marion areas. Warden Crane says “We as a community need to come together and work with one another to keep this from continuing to happen; and if it does, take the steps necessary to get the information to the local wardens so they can investigate and solve these cases.”
Please call 1-800-TIP-MONT or your local sheriff office with any information on these or other fish and game violations.
Contact: Game Warden Wes Oedekoven, 270-4220; Game Warden Chris Crane, 249-6231.