Hunting Accident File > VIOLATIONS > 2006

Game and Fish suspends wildlife officers pending hunting probe

Game and Fish suspends wildlife officers pending hunting probe Friday, Jul 28, 2006

Arkansas News Bureau

LITTLE ROCK - Two state Game and Fish Commission wildlife officers have been suspended with pay pending an investigation into allegations of hunting violations, the agency' director said Thursday.

Game and Fish Director Scott Henderson said he was handling the probe as an internal matter, but he did not rule out other agencies, including federal authorities, getting involved.

If substantiated, sanctions for the alleged violations could range from reprimands to termination, Henderson said, depending on the facts of the case.

"Any allegations against our folks I would characterize as not trivial," he said. "This could affect people's careers and lives."

Henderson said the allegations were brought to his attention this week and that supervisory personnel have conducted interviews.

"Both officers were placed on administrative leave on July 18 and the investigation into the matter is still ongoing," James F. Goodhart, the commission's chief counsel, said.

The agency would not disclose the names of the officers or give details about the allegations against them. It also denied a request made under the state Freedom of Information Act for personnel records and other documents related to the administrative action, saying it would do so only after final disposition of the case.

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