Monday, May 10, 2010

Poached Adams County buck would have set record

Ohio’s Adams County is known nationally as a big buck go-to destination. Now the southwest Ohio county has a much more dubious title.

A 37-year-old Scioto County man was ordered to pay $23,572.05 in restitution as well as $1,500 in fines and $134 in court costs for the illegal killing of an Adams County buck with a score of 197 2/8 inches. This was the largest white-tailed deer killed in North America in 2009 and would have ranked forth all-time in the Ohio Buckeye Big Buck Club records.

But Johnny B. Clay of Minford, won’t get that honor, though he’ll pay dearly for his crime on top of the fine, court costs and restitution. He also received a life-time suspension of hunting privileges in Ohio along with 33 other states enrolled in the Wildlife Violator’s Compact.

Clay’s serious penalties is due in large measure because he had 10 prior wildlife convictions doe deer-hunting violations and had spent time in jail for several of these offenses, the Wildlife Division said in a press statement.

His charges this time included taking a deer in a closed season, hunting without permission, no hunting license, and no deer permit.

Clay attempted to check in his animal as a Kentucky archery kill but two concerned citizens prompted the Wildlife Division to investigate the matter.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

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