Trouble with poachers


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M-Ful
February 3, 2013, 10:41 PM
This weekend I was on my deer lease and after some tracking found and chased off some poachers, weve had problems with poachers and trespassers more and more lately and Ive gotten the local game warden out there to help and got his number if I catch them. Every one that Ive seen has been armed and the warden said hed caught a couple smoking dope outside our gate. My question is if I come in contact with one of these guys and they threaten my life and I have to shoot to defend my life, what are the laws about a self defense shoot with a rifle outside city limits?

Thanks,
Matt

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LeonCarr
February 3, 2013, 11:04 PM
Please do not get legal advice from The Internet.

Consult an Attorney.

I am not trying to be short with you, I just want you to get the best advice.

Just my .02,
LeonCarr

M-Ful
February 3, 2013, 11:18 PM
Agreed! Im taking everything here with a grain of salt and I was planning on talking to one too, I was hoping there might be someone on here who had a similar experience.

zorro45
February 3, 2013, 11:36 PM
I have this same problem, it could get ugly real quickly. The response time of our local Env.Police is measured in weeks and the other local LEOs have told
me "they don't like to go into the woods." You might think about putting up some hidden game cameras, and try to get their plate numbers as well. If you can get some images of them dragging out a deer, then your game warden should be able to help you. from what I have seen, they are more interested in meth labs in the woods and traditional fish & game enforcement takes a back seat. The poacher "tip line" is there to scare people if they even read the brochure that comes with a license (if they even have one). YMMV, I would expect in a State like Maine or Alaska it might be a different story, or maybe I have been brainwashed by watching too much National Geographic where they have a pretty gung ho attitude.

Cypress
February 4, 2013, 12:47 PM
I have dealt with this problem before and I have come to the conclusion that its best to locate them but not allow them to realize you are there. Call the law and then go in with law enforcement. If the trespassers are high or just stupid or even if they fire a shot at something else while your approaching it could turn ugly. Catching a poacher is not worth my life or even having to live with taking a life. I've seen fathers bring their 8 year olds with them poaching. Can you imagine inadvertently killing a child because he was hunting with his dad. Just not worth it. Once a few get hassled pretty hard by the law, word will get out and it'll slow down considerably. If they are driving in a couple pieces of fairly sharp scrap metal in the trail will make them easier to catch or at least cost them some money. I just don't feel that a jury would be on my side if I intentionally escalate things no matter how mad it makes me.

Bubbles
February 4, 2013, 01:45 PM
We had a similar problem on land we own but don't live on. We had to curry a close relationship with the game warden, put up some game cams to catch the activity (use the kind with an IR flash and hide them well), remove tree stands, show up at the property at irregular hours, and engage in certain other tactics that... while not necessarily HR... were legal and effective.

In the end, the guy who was caught was 1) a felon and already known to the local fuzz for being a troublemaker, 2) hunting on our land with a firearm, and 3) ended up losing his truck. Oh, and his wife filed for divorce after he went to prison.

Akita1
February 4, 2013, 01:59 PM
We had a similar problem on land we own but don't live on. We had to curry a close relationship with the game warden, put up some game cams to catch the activity (use the kind with an IR flash and hide them well), remove tree stands, show up at the property at irregular hours, and engage in certain other tactics that... while not necessarily HR... were legal and effective.

In the end, the guy who was caught was 1) a felon and already known to the local fuzz for being a troublemaker, 2) hunting on our land with a firearm, and 3) ended up losing his truck. Oh, and his wife filed for divorce after he went to prison.
+1 Bubbles - we did the same (IR game cams, game warden relationships, neighbor camp relationships, etc.). Eventually it diminished but still a problem because although we have many members, it's large acreage and we can't cover all of it all the time. The other big problem we've had is dogs from neighboring camps - we don't run them on our land but we always see them wandering about.

mgkdrgn
February 4, 2013, 02:14 PM
We had a similar problem on land we own but don't live on. We had to curry a close relationship with the game warden, put up some game cams to catch the activity (use the kind with an IR flash and hide them well), remove tree stands, show up at the property at irregular hours, and engage in certain other tactics that... while not necessarily HR... were legal and effective.

In the end, the guy who was caught was 1) a felon and already known to the local fuzz for being a troublemaker, 2) hunting on our land with a firearm, and 3) ended up losing his truck. Oh, and his wife filed for divorce after he went to prison.
might want to keep track of when this fellow gets out ... just sayin ...

Bubbles
February 4, 2013, 03:33 PM
might want to keep track of when this fellow gets out ... just sayin ...
Got it covered. Anyhow, what the OP has done right so far is getting the law involved, so there's an official record of him reporting the problem and putting the authorities on notice about it. As for the aftermath of a self-defense shooting, that would boil down to your state's law regarding use of lethal force, and whether your county prosecutor is the type who throws everything to a grand jury, or whether it's one who will shake your hand after a "good shoot".

allaroundhunter
February 4, 2013, 03:44 PM
My question is if I come in contact with one of these guys and they threaten my life and I have to shoot to defend my life, what are the laws about a self defense shoot with a rifle outside city limits?

The only part of your question that I will address is this. Deadly force with a rifle is no different than deadly force with a pistol or shotgun. Same laws apply, same consequences apply.

BSA1
February 4, 2013, 07:36 PM
Another Country Boy here,

First and most importantly make sure your property is properly posted No Hunting and No Trespassing.

Second if your property is fenced make sure it is in good repair.

Third clear trees and brush along your property line. I have on many occasions been hunting deep in field or along tree line where there were no markings, i.e fence line, posted signage, indicating that we were crossing over to different property. In my area farmers commonly lease 100's of acreage so it is dificult if not impossible to know whose is whose.

Fourth make sure your gates are in good repair and padlock them.

Fifth file police report and get a case number.

Six clear your property of any tree stands and hunting blinds.

Seven game cameras along trails leading into your property sounds like a good idea.

Jim, West PA
February 5, 2013, 01:36 PM
I was caught up in a similar situation on family land.
I encountered a tresspasser and when i attempted to approach him, he fired at me with a shotgun. I called the Police and he was imediately arrested.
When i showed up at the hearing, the GC was there instead if the Police dept that arrested him.
I was TOLD, that instead of the assault charge, he was being charged with hunting without a license.:fire:
Ya jist never know how these things will play out.

alsaqr
February 5, 2013, 09:07 PM
For many years one of our properties was a magnet for trespassing hunters. All the neighbors had tresspass problems too. One of the two primary violators was a hog hunting "ranch". The owner of that "ranch" claimed to have 10,000 acres leased for hog hunting. In fact, he leased no property. He took his hunters out and turned them loose to trespass on private property.

Trespassing by the hog hunters ended when a new Dodge diesel pickup burned up while parked illegally on my neighbors posted property. My neighbor says the trucks catalyitic converter started the grass fire.

Double Naught Spy
February 6, 2013, 05:53 PM
My question is if I come in contact with one of these guys and they threaten my life and I have to shoot to defend my life, what are the laws about a self defense shoot with a rifle outside city limits?

The laws for self defense do not change in regard to being within or without the city limits or if you use a knife, handgun, or rifle. The question will be whether or not you could reasonably believe that your life was endangered (or serious bodily harm, depending on the wording of your state laws) by the threaten and if lethal force was warranted to stop the threat.

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