Pennsylvania Poacher Busted With 37 Illegal Bucks on His Property

by Sean Griffin
(Photo by John Walton/PA Images via Getty Images)

A man from Monroe County had his hunting privileges in Pennsylvania revoked indefinitely after a shocking discovery. Authorities claim the poacher illegally possessed the remains of 37 antlered white-tailed deer on his property.

David J. Frantz Sr., 59, of the 900 block of Molasses Valley Road in Kunkletown, Polk Township, was taken into custody. Pennsylvania State Police arrested Frantz around 9:30 a.m. on Nov. 15.

Troopers with state police at Lehighton reportedly called about a complaint concerning a red Ford F-150 parked on a neighbor’s private property. Apparently, the door was ajar and a rifle was visible in the front seat.

The troopers knew Frantz drove a similar vehicle because of his criminal history. Frantz was “a person prohibited from possessing firearms and having a history of illegally harvesting white-tailed deer,” police wrote in court records.

Frantz is prohibited from possessing firearms due to a 2000 burglary conviction, according to police. His hunting privileges are revoked indefinitely in Pennsylvania. Gerald Kapral, information and education supervisor for the state Game Commission, reported his revocation to the media.

“We’ve been dealing with this guy since as far back as 1989,” Kapral said. He also noted nearly every game officer assigned to Monroe County in recent years has come into contact with Frantz. “This guy, he’s just a bad guy, he’s no good. He has no regard for game law, he has no regard for criminal law, as the charges show here.”

Responding troopers found the pickup, registered to Frantz, resting on the front console. The gun was a scoped pump-action Remington Model 760 Gamemaster .308 rifle with a round chambered and two more in the magazine. A spotlight and ammunition box was located nearby, according to the court records.

Police Reveal What They Found at Poacher’s Residence

Police said they also found 207 ears of corn on the property. These were all harvested without the landowner’s permission from nearby private property.

The poacher admitted to police to having taken the corn from a field. He then drove the truck with the firearm in the vehicle, court records state.

Troopers seized the truck and the rifle. They went to Frantz’s home, where several more firearms were observed in plain view.

“Further, they observed several scavenger birds perched in the trees at the rear of the property,” Cpl. Kyle Gruber wrote in the affidavit of probable cause. “They also observed spent rifle casings on the ground near the driveway/front walkway, and buck skull with antlers leaned against a pine tree on the hillside which was visible from the driveway.”

Police obtained a search warrant for the property. They claim that Frantz, in an interview, initially denied any deer carcasses would be found on his property. He then claimed that the heads of several road-killed deer were there, court records indicate.

Frantz allegedly stated he hadn’t hunted in years. However, he claimed he hadn’t reported the road-killed deer to the Pennsylvania Game Commission. He also admitted to processing venison at the home, police said.

Investigators don’t believe the buck whose remains were found had died recently. However, some of the remains could be years old, said Kapral.