Hunting Accident File > VIOLATIONS > 2006

Hunting proves expensive for out-of-state trio

By Rocky Mountain News
September 26, 2006

It only took three out-of-state hunters a couple of minutes to violate half a dozen wildlife laws in extreme eastern Mesa County south of Silt. And now they’ll pay fines of more than $8,800 dollars for illegally getting a jump on Colorado's muzzleloader elk season, and breaking a number of other laws.

Donald G. Wilshire, 41, of Georgetown, Ky., was cited for shooting an elk with a muzzleloader rifle before the opening of the muzzleloader season.

Darrell G. Wilshire, 61, and Betty J. Wilshire, 59, of Oak Hill, W. Va., were cited for unlawfully transferring a hunting license to another person and using an electronic device to further a wildlife crime.

Colorado Division of Wildlife officers were tipped to the group last year by hunters who suspected they weren’t hunting legally.

District Wildlife Managers Will Spence, Brian Gray, and JT Romatzke and a division investigator monitored the Wilshire's camp near West Willow Creek in September.

On Sept. 5, officers saw Donald Wilshire leave the family camp and go to a nearby hunting area where he used a scoped muzzleloader rifle to kill a bull elk.

He radioed back to the camp and instructed Betty and Darrell Wilshire to drive to town and purchase the proper hunting license to cover the kill.

Colorado's muzzleloader season was Sept. 9-17, so the kill took place before the proper season.

It is also illegal in Colorado to use a scope on a muzzleloader outside of the regular rifle seasons, which do not begin until October.

Additionally, it is illegal for an individual to purchase a license after killing an animal.

Add to that, licenses are non-transferable and it is illegal for someone to kill an animal using another person's license and using a radio to communicate information to further a wildlife crime is also against state law.
On Sept. 6, officers from the DOW entered the Wilshire camp and confronted them with the evidence.

During the course of the investigation it was also determined that Donald Wilshire had committed a similar violation in the killing of a cow elk in 2005.

Donald Wilshire was cited for illegal possession of a bull elk, unlawfully receiving another person's license, hunting outside and established season, and possession and transfer charges related to the 2005 incident.

He also was issued a warning citation for conspiracy, hunting without daylight fluorescent orange, and failing to properly void an elk license.

In total, he paid $5,000 in fines and was assessed 95 points against his hunting and fishing privileges in Colorado.

Betty Wilshire and Darrell Wilshire were cited for illegal possession of a bull elk, unlawful transfer of a license and unlawful use of an electronic device.

They each paid $1,918 in fines and were assessed 45 points against their hunting and fishing privileges.

The muzzleloader and radios used in the crime were seized.

Because the three individuals were all assessed more than 20 license suspension points, they also face the loss of their hunting and fishing privileges in Colorado and 23 other Wildlife Violator Compact states.

An administrative hearing will be held to determine the length of any potential suspensions.

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