Man charged in Pitcairn for hunting deer with bait, crossbow, after permitted hours
Wednesday, October 10, 2018 - 5:45 pm

PITCAIRN -- State environmental conservation police made an arrest after a man was found baiting a deer after hunting hours and killing the animal with a crossbow.

On Sept. 28, the Department of Environmental Conservation said officer Scott Atwood was on patrol in the town of Pitcairn when he noticed a strong odor of burning debris that seemed to be coming from behind a camp, DEC said.

When Atwood reached the camp, he observed smoke coming from an ATV trail, DEC said.

There were also bags of corn stacked up on the ground and in the back of a pickup truck and a bow case sitting on top of the bags, DEC said.

The officer followed fresh ATV tracks from the camp, which led him to a smoldering pile of debris, including empty corn bags, DEC said.

Atwood continued past the debris and reached an elevated enclosed hunting stand, DEC said.

He observed a hanging feeder and watched as an individual exited the stand and disappeared into the woods with a rifle slung over his shoulder, DEC said, DEC said.

The subject appeared to be tracking an animal, DEC said.

Atwood approached the man and after a short conversation, determined he had killed a four-point buck with a crossbow over an area baited with corn and apples after legal shooting hours, DEC said.

The deer was recovered and seized and a total of six tickets were issued to the man for killing deer except as permitted, hunting deer pursuant to a bow stamp while in possession of a firearm, hunting deer with the aid of bait, taking deer other than during permitted hours, taking deer by a means not specified, and failing to carry his hunting license and tags, DEC said.

Atwood returned the next day and met with the property owner who admitted to starting the fire that had drawn the officer’s attention, DEC said.

One ticket was issued to the property owner for unlawful open burning of refuse material, DEC said.

The deer was donated to a local community organization, DEC said.

DEC did not identify the suspect in a news release, and their public information office did not immediately return a request for the details.