Game wardens: Record deer was taken illegallyJanuary 29,2013By Patrick McArdle
STAMFORD - The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department had good news and bad news for a local hunter in December.
The good news was that the large, trophy-antlered buck that Jim Smith, 47, of Stamford, had harvested in Stamford was the largest taken in Vermont in more than 20 years.
The bad news was that the buck was taken a day after the 2012 rifle season ended so instead of congratulations, Smith is now facing criminal charges for which he is scheduled to be arraigned in Bennington criminal court on Feb. 11.
In a press release, officials with the department said someone had witnessed Smith removing the 10-point buck from the woods on Nov. 26 and then tipped them off.
There was no record of the deer being reported so Vermont Sate Game Wardens Richard Watkin, Kelly Price and David Taddei conducted an investigation.
During an interview on Dec. 19, Smith admitted to killing the deer on the day after rifle season ended but said he had mistakenly believed the season was still open. The antlers, meat and hide were seized by wardens.
Smith has been cited to appear in court for taking a deer during the closed season. If convicted, he could be sentenced to 60 days in prison, lose his right to hunt, fish and trap in Vermont for up to three years and be fined up to $3,000.
Curtis Smiley, a lieutenant with the Fish and Wildlife's enforcement division and president of the Vermont Big Game Trophy Club, said the buck would have a Boone and Crockett score of 165 2/8 gross. The Boone and Crockett score, the standard for North American hunters, is based on antler size.
According to Keith Balfourd, marketing director of Boone and Crockett, the score described it would make it the fifth- or sixth-largest buck reported from Vermont since the scoring system began almost 100 years ago.
Vermont doesn't historically produce big-racked, white-tail deer and there are only 13 in Boone and Crockett's record books, Balfourd said.
For the complete story, see Wednesday's Rutland Herald.MORE IN This Just InWASHINGTON ó The primary season just ended and the general election campaign now unfolding looks... Full StoryA mysterious poll is asking Vermonters if they would support the continued operation of Vermont... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: No money this year for western rail project, Lola Aiken memorialized in Montpelier, Supreme Court Castleton murder suspect will remain in jail, Shaftbury man fires shots from his AK-47 into neighbor's home.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1959, Soviet Premier Nikita S. Khrushchev arrives in U.S. for historic 13-day visit; in 1987, Secretary of State George Shultz and Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze sign nuclear reduction agreement.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City celebrates completion of its newest mural, on West Street opposite the post office, more than $2 million in federal grants will bolster Vermont's health centers, Patrick McArdle reports on pending sale of Vermont papers.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Henry Hudson sails up the Hudson River as far as present-day Albany, Leo Szilard has epiphany waiting for the light to change, 3 kids report a West Virginia close encounter in 1952.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Who will run for mayor in Rutland next year? Has Bennington overcome its fear of twerking? Documentary 'Hungry Heart' packs the Paramount, and the city's Creek Path scores another million-plus dollars.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: The 1509 'Lesser Judgment' earthquake on this day at Constantinople kills 13,000 and destroys the city; in 1801, on this day, Marie Laveau, the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans is born.