Reward offered in elk poaching case (WARNING: Graphic content)
Officials are looking for information about who slaughtered an elk, took only the head as a trophy and left the meat to waste. (Courtesy)
Someone took head, abandoned the body
10/23/2013 6:00:00 AM
KINGMAN - A poacher shot and killed a bull elk sometime over the weekend northwest of Ash Fork, cut off its head for a trophy and left the meat to waste.
Operation Game Thief has offered a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of those responsible.
"An officer has collected evidence at the scene, but we are looking for additional information," said Zen Mocarski, the public information officer for the Game and Fish Region 3 office in Kingman.
The elk was killed about one mile north of Stone Lake in Unit 10 on the Diamond 7 allotment on the south end of Bishop Lake Plateau, said Mocarski, who noted there was no bull elk season in Unit 10 at the time of the killing.
"It is important to remember this is not the act of sportsmen or (sportswomen)," said Mocarski. "Poaching is a crime. It is important for anyone with information to come forward. There's a lot of territory for an officer to cover and the eyes and ears of the public are critically important in bringing poachers to justice."
Mocarski said information provided to Operation Game Thief in the past has played a vital role in apprehending poachers.
Poaching is a class 2 misdemeanor in Arizona. The poachers in the weekend incident would face charges of unlawfully taken wildlife, taken out of season, waste of game meat and, potentially, taken without a tag or license.
Each charge comes with a $750 maximum fine upon conviction as well as a possible civil fine and license revocation.
Anyone with information regarding this case, or any wildlife violation, should call the Operation Game Thief Hotline at (800) 352-0700. Online submissions can be reported by going to www.azgfd.gov/thief. Identities will remain confidential. Callers are asked to reference case number 13-002889.