Two Wetzel County men have been charged with various violations of West Virginia's wildlife laws in connection with the illegal taking of two trophy deer. Capt. W.A. Persinger of the Law Enforcement Section of the west Virginia Division of Natural Resources confirmed.
According to a news release, Sgt. C.D. Shriner received a citizen complaint stating that two individuals had killed two deer in the Eight Mile Ridge area near the Tyler County line and had cut off the heads. The individuals proceeded to leave the remaining carcasses at the scene.
An investigation led Sgt. Shriner to the location of the carcasses as well as information that resulted in the recovery of two eight-point bucks. Continued investigation led Sgt. Shriner to a suspect who, after being questioned, confessed to the unlawful taking of the two bucks.
Deer poaching, according to a news release, resulting in a conviction can result in a $200 replacement cost per deer, along with an additional fine of $1,000 to $2,500 for the illegal taking of trophy bucks.
Capt. Persinger commented on the success of the investigation.
"This investigation was successful because someone saw a crime being committed and reported it to the proper authorities," said Capt. Persinger. "The concerned sportsmen in the area are to be commended in this case for their information and reporting of this unlawful act."
Tylor Hostuttler, 18, of Jackson, W.Va., was issued various citations for the violations in addition to a trophy buck replacement fee for each buck. Codie Leek, 18, of Pine Grove, W.Va., was also charged in the incidents as an accessory. The charges are currently pending in the Wetzel County Circuit Court.