In October of 2021 a New York family filed a complaint with the New York Department of Conservation. The family feared that someone was trespassing and illegally hunting white-tailed deer on their private property.

Late last month it appears the NYDEC, with the help of the land owners, caught the individuals suspected of the crimes. Here's how it went down.

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Last Fall, a family in Watertown, NY noticed signs of trespassing and hunting on their property. The land is posted and private so they clearly wanted to find out who was on the land and what they were up to. At that time they discovered was a pop-up style hunting blind and trail camera.

New York Department of Conservation officers investigated the complaint and were able to review images from the trail camera. What they saw were photos of a man baiting the area with corn and apples. The same subject was caught on camera hunting over the bait pile on three separate occasions, even dragging a deceased white-tailed deer on Oct. 10th.

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If I am understanding this correctly, the "hunters" own camera implicated the suspect of his own crimes! Upon further investigation, DEC officers identified and located the suspect in the photos. The subject admitted that the camera is his, placing the corn and apples out for deer, and then hunting and killing a deer with the aid of the bait.

Last month all of this came to an end as the Watertown man paid a $700 penalty for unlawfully taking a white-tailed deer with the aid of a pre-established bait pile. The man is also charged with:

  • 3 counts of hunting deer with the aid of bait
  • 1 misdemeanor count of illegal take of big game

The man faces suspension of his hunting privileges in addition to the fine paid in court.

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