California Man Apprehended After Poaching Deer, Faking Deer Tag Report

by Michael Freeman

Hunting, like any sport and tradition, has its own rules and regulations people must follow. On that note, it’s imperative to check the laws regarding it, wherever you may be. For instance, a California man was recently apprehended and fined for poaching a deer and then faking a tag report for it.

Redding Record Searchlight broke the story about the Red Bluff man pleading guilty to poaching. Kaden Bodi Pearce admitted to shooting a deer in a Tehama County walnut orchard while lacking permission to hunt. Making matters worse, he lied about it and submitted a false report to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

After pleading guilty to the poaching charges, the court ordered Pearce to fine a $1,580 fine. The judge then had him give up the buck’s antlers and he must complete 40 hours of community service. The department also felt it necessary to revoke his hunting privileges for the entirety of his one-year probation.

The incident actually came from an investigation from August 2020 when a wildlife officer got a tip about a possible poaching occurring. Captain Patrick Foy of Fish and Wildlife law enforcement states the tip included Pearce specifically. Foy noted after shooting the deer, Pearce reported he killed it on public land north of Red Bluff. Pearce also gave false information to wildlife officers. He said he shot the deer with a bow and arrow when he actually used a firearm.

Luckily, officers obtained a search warrant for Pearce’s cell phone and using electronic evidence, were able to determine where he shot the buck. The evidence showed Pearce was trespassing in a local walnut orchard when he shot the buck,” Foy said.

Officials Apprehend a Michigan Poacher After he Killed Nine Bucks

It’s fortunate officials were able to apprehend and punish Kaden Pearce before things got worse and he repeated his actions. In a similar occurrence, a Michigan poacher was recently caught after he killed nine trophy bucks.

In October, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) received a tip from state police about “several trophy deer” being stashed in a barn. Justin Ernst was the suspect, who also happened to have a domestic violence complaint against him. While investigating the latter accusation, officials stumbled upon nine large trophy bucks lined up in his barn. The report states Ernst often drove his truck through local fields and if he spotted a buck, would poach them.

“It’s a shame that this criminal ruined the chance for ethical, legal hunters to have their opportunity to take one of these trophy deer,” Lt. Gerald Thayer, Michigan DNR Law Enforcement Division said. “Not only did this felon steal from the natural resource, he also damaged agriculture crops, and has been doing so for some time.”

Ernst now faces up to $59,500 in reimbursement fees if all 15 of his charges go through.