Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Nine face charges for illegal elk killings


State Department of Fish and Wildlife officers referred charges to the Whitman County Prosecuting Attorney Office on June 9 for nine men from the St. John and Colfax areas for their roles in the illegal take of at least three elk on Oct. 5, 2019.

According to a press release from the WDFW, an investigation by WDFW Police officers, along with a Whitman County Sheriff's Office Deputy, shows the men illegally used vehicles to chase, corral and prevent the escape of a large herd of elk near Endicott-St.John Road and Mulkey Road, before they shot multiple elk with muzzleloaders from the road and out of their vehicles.

Game officers had received multiple complaints over the past several years about hunters for similar incidents; however, the "hunts" usually took place behind locked gates on private property, so the officers were unsuccessful in pursuing these tips. In this case, two witnesses saw the event and contacted game officials while the elk were still on the ground. As a result of the investigation, three vehicles were seized for forfeiture, along with three poached elk.


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