Three Minnesota residents have been fined a total of $4,000 for wolf hunting violations under the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act.
Blake Schmidt of Clear Lake, Minnesota, pleaded guilty and was fined $2,000 for shooting a wolf without a licence and $1,000 for providing false or misleading information to a conservation officer.
Seth Hubbard of Becker, Minnesota, and Shane Gearen of Big Lake, Minnesota, both pleaded guilty and were fined $500 each for providing false or misleading information to a conservation officer.
Court heard that on the morning of November 2, 2015, Schmidt shot a wolf without a licence while hunting white-tailed deer near Minaki, Ontario. Schmidt, Hubbard and Gearen then travelled to Kenora where Schmidt purchased a wolf licence. Schmidt returned to the hunt site, tagged the wolf and brought it out the following day. Conservation officers contacted the three men on November 5 and, during the course of the investigation, all three men provided false information about when the wolf was shot.
Justice of the Peace Tom Logan heard the case in the Ontario Court of Justice, Kenora, on March 1, 2016.
The ministry reminds the public that in order to lawfully possess or hunt for most wildlife in Ontario, you must possess a valid licence for that wildlife prior to harvesting it. In addition, it is an offence to knowingly make a false statement to a conservation officer.
To report a natural resources violation, call the MNRF TIPS line at 1-877-847-7667 toll-free any time or contact your local ministry office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).