COLE COUNTY, Mo. – Two people face criminal charges in a mid-Missouri deer poaching case. Officials say they are accused of killing six deer illegally.
The Missouri Department of Conservation shared about these charges Friday in an ongoing investigation. Officials revealed several weapons and suspicious items connected with the case.
Investigators say an MDC agent in Cole County first discovered several poached deer while patrolling Binder Park near Jefferson City. The agent had responded to several calls about poaching concerns.
The MDC says several deer had been shot and dumped on the public trails in October. The Cole County Sheriff’s Office was also called to investigate the series of incidents, which recently led to the arrests of two suspects.
Investigators have not identified the suspects by name, age or gender, but note that they were charged with taking deer from a public roadway, taking deer with artificial light, taking deer from motor-driven conveyance, and littering.
MDC says there was another suspicious poaching case in Osage County involving six other deer illegally taken. According to previous reports citing MDC data, it’s estimated around 5,000 deer were illegally taken between 2017 and 2018, before new penalties increases in 2019.
If you witness or suspect a wildlife violation, MDC says you can anonymously report your findings to Operation Game Thief at 1-800-392-1111. For more information from the MDC on poaching, click here.