West Texas game wardens search for antelope poacher

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Information leading to an arrest can be rewarded with up to $1,000

Texas Parks and Wildlife Game Wardens are asking for the public’s help in locating an antelope poacher.

A pronghorn antelope was shot illegally on the Texas Highway 652 in Culberson County around Jan. 17.

Even though the animal had been shot, neither the horns nor any meat had been taken, said Ray Spears, the captain game warden for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Law Enforcement division.

Though this was the only animal poached in that particular area, Spears said there has been a rash of poaching throughout west Texas lately.

“Animals around here have a hard enough time surviving with the drought and conditions without people just shooting them and letting them lay,” Spears said.

Anyone who has information on this crime can call the Operation Game Thief Reward Hotline at 1-800-792-4263 or call Game Warden John Apgar at 432-207-0379.

People who call in tips can remain anonymous if they wish or they can receive up to a $1,000 reward.

The punishment for poaching varies depending on the severity, Spears said. Besides criminal penalty fines, poachers must pay restitution to the state for what they killed.

Because the antelope was a young buck, Spears said restitution would probably be around $1,000.

“It’s really a shame,” Spears said. “We don’t have numbers like we did back in the day, and every time I see something like this come along, I want to bring justice for the wildlife.”

Source: Current-Argus News

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