Ohio Man Pleads Guilty to Poaching $23,000+ Trophy Buck

Ohio Man Pleads Guilty to Poaching $23,000+ Trophy Buck
Largest restitution for a poached deer ever imposed in Ohio.

Ohio Department Natural Resources
Ohio Department Natural Resources

BELLEFONTAINE, OH –-(Ammoland.com)- A Logan County man pled guilty to three wildlife violations stemming from the illegal taking of a trophy white-tailed deer in the Bellefontaine Municipal Court on Monday, January 3.

As a result, he will be required to pay $23,816.59 in restitution, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

James C. Alspaugh, 39, of West Mansfield pled guilty to three charges including hunting by the aid of a motor vehicle, shooting from a roadway, and hunting without permission. The Honorable Judge John Ross presided over the case and ordered Alspaugh to pay $400 in fines, an additional $151.50 in court costs, and to forfeit the deer. Alspaugh was ordered to spend 48 hours in the Logan County Jail.

Man Pleads Guilty to Poaching $23,000+ Trophy Buck
Man Pleads Guilty to Poaching $23,000+ Trophy Buck

In addition, Alspaugh will lose his hunting privileges for two years. He will be entered into the Wildlife Violator’s Compact and most likely will lose hunting rights in 36 other states.

The Division of Wildlife is also imposing restitution for the deer in the amount of $23,816.95. This is in accordance with Ohio's revised restitution law for illegal taking of white-tailed deer. The law went into effect March 2008 and allows the Division of Wildlife to seek an increased recovery value on all illegally harvested wildlife.

The non-typical trophy deer, scored according to Boone & Crockett (B&C) guidelines, netted an impressive 218 7/8.

A concerned citizen contacted Ohio wildlife officers Adam Smith and Jeff Tipton about the questionable shooting of the trophy deer in December 2010. Officers were able to recover the deer and determine that it was unlawfully taken.

The Division of Wildlife is encouraging citizens to report any illegal activity they observe by contacting the TIP line. Tips may be phoned anonymously to 1-800-POACHER.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at ohiodnr.com.

Editor's Note on Restitution: The recovery value for an individual white-tailed deer is derived from the formula listed in 1531.201 of the Ohio Revised Code. The value is determined by measuring the antlers and using the following formula plus the value derived for wildlife. The formula for white-tailed deer may be applied to all illegally taken deer whose gross antler score exceeds 125 Boone and Crockett (B&C) inches. The formula is:

Recovery Value = [(gross score – 100)2 x $1.65] + the value derived in the Wildlife Value Formula ($500 as of 3/08).

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