Hunting Accident File > VIOLATIONS > 2006

Native leader charged for hunting violations

Associated Press

A prominent Alaska Native leader who favors a tough stance against poachers has been charged with several game violations. Alaska State Troopers say Ross Schaeffer Senior, mayor of the Northwest Arctic Borough, hunted ducks without a license near Kotzebue in early September. Officials say he had no duck stamps, no plugs to limit shotguns to three rounds, and used lead shot. Schaeffer says he made a mistake.

Elected borough mayor in 2000, Schaeffer demanded more wildlife enforcement after the state removed a year-round game warden last year. The Inupiat town of 3,000 has seen a rise in wasted caribou meat and blame out-of-town trophy hunters interested only in antlers.

Officials say the charges are noncriminal violations similar to speeding tickets. Officials say locals have subsistence rights, allowing them to hunt out of season, but are still required to follow other state and federal laws.

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