Two Charged With Illegal Bear Harvest In MA

Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, Bear Hunting Magazine

The two men charged in the below News Flash were arraigned Monday, February 27th on several charges including conspiring to cover-up the illegal kill. There was no word yet on a trial date.

Two men, a father and son, from Orange, Mass. are charged with illegally baiting and then shooting a black bear near Royalston.

Charges were filed after an investigation including testing the bear's DNA and a search of the homes of both men last month. The son, 29, is charged with illegally hunting a bear by baiting, altering or forging a license, violating fish and game laws by unlawfully killing and possessing a bear, conspiring to provide false information during an investigation and witness intimidation. The father, 52, is facing the same charges except for altering or forging a license.

The investigation began in mid-September after the son claimed he shot the bear legally. Local police heard shots fired on September 5th. On September 13th, officials were notified a bear had been shot in Royalston and had been brought to a state Division of Fisheries & Wildlife office to be tagged. The man claimed the bear had been killed that day, but wildlife officials were unable to pull a tooth as the mouth was too stiff to be opened.

Officials requested to see the kill site, and were brought to a wooded area. From here the father and son say the bear was shot and brought back to a house to field dress. State officials believe that an alternate site was used, where internal parts were found later on, that was set up with bait. These parts were taken for DNA analysis against the bear that was tagged and has since been confiscated by the state.

Authorities also confiscated game cameras and camera memory cards during their search of the men's residences. The two men are expected to be arraigned February 27th.

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