TEMPLE, Texas – A Texas Game Warden investigation sparked by social media posts on Facebook detailing the killing of an 11-foot alligator has resulted in the arrests of two Killeen men.
Texas Game Wardens today arrested Bradley Gillis, 26, and James Haff, 33, on Class A misdemeanor charges for taking wildlife resources without landowner consent. The pair was booked into the Bell County Jail. Bond was set at $7,500 each.
Game wardens in Bell County learned about the killing of a large alligator along the Lampasas River above Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir earlier in the week, including alleged details and photos on Facebook. Wardens then used the same social media outlet to solicit information from the public. The game warden Facebook post garnered statewide news media attention, as well as numerous tips from the public that helped in the investigation.
Alligators have been observed in the Lampasas River above Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir for many years and reports of illegal harvest or documented dangerous interactions with the recreating public or local livestock have been extremely rare.
Alligators may be taken in Texas on private property only during the April 1-June 30 open season outside a 22-county core area in southeast Texas. Alligators may be taken from public waters adjacent to private land by all lawful means except firearms; however, the person taking the alligator and the taking device must be on private property. State law requires that if a person wants to engage in alligator hunting, they must be licensed, have prior landowner permission and a tag must be purchased upon harvest.