MT: 'Serial wildlife killer' draws jail sentence, lifetime hunting ban
'Serial wildlife killer' draws jail sentence, lifetime hunting ban
1:52 PM, May 26, 2009
There are poachers of wildlife -- which, sadly, are appearing too
frequently in this blog -- and then there are people whose reprehensible
actions transcend the term.
A spokesman for Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks put it
best when describing Steve Slavinsky of Manhattan as a "serial wildlife
killer," based on the extent of his illegal hunting and trapping throughout
Montana. Fortunately for that state's critters and law-abiding hunters
everywhere, Slavinsky is going to jail and can never legally hunt again.
According to a story in today's Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Judge John Brown
told Slavinsky at a sentencing hearing last week in Gallatin County District
Court: "Your conduct tarnishes" every hunter's reputation and, "You showed a
blatant disregard for the laws of this state."
The long list of violations, unearthed after an eight-year FWP
investigation, include hunting out of season, hunting and trapping on
private land without permission, night-hunting with a spotlight, shooting
from roads, taking only heads while leaving carcasses to rot and illegally
guiding. With an undercover investigator, Slavinsky shot at otters and
persuaded the investigator to shoot an elk on federal land.
Brown issued a sentence of five years with the Montana Department of
Corrections and a suspended sentence of 15 years in the Montana State
Prison. Slavinsky also is barred from hunting or fishing anywhere in the
world -- or wherever cooperative agreements are in place -- for the rest of
Chad Murphy, a state wildlife department investigator, told the
Chronicle: "He's been stealing Montana's wildlife resources from everybody
for years. That's why we asked for a lifetime suspension. He's not just
stealing from hunters, he's stealing from everybody."
-- Pete Thomas
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