Game Wardens Make Several Arrests
Posted on 12/18/2017
VT Game Warden BadgeFor Immediate Release: December 18, 2017
Media Contacts: Col. Jason Batchelder, 802-828-1529; Lt. Carl Wedin, 802-879-5669

Vermont State Game Wardens Make Several Arrests This Fall in Chittenden County Area

MILTON and WESTFORD, Vt. – Vermont State Game Wardens made several deer poaching arrests in northern Chittenden County this fall.

On December 1, wardens staked out near a fawn deer that was shot out of season from a motor vehicle but not retrieved. Three hours later, two men, Andrew Duprey, 23, and Thomas Parah, 23, both of St. Albans, retrieved the deer and were apprehended by wardens. They confessed and turned over Francis Cross, 67, also of St. Albans, for shooting the deer. All three men were charged and face fines and jail time, along with a three-year loss of their hunting privileges. Cross also faces the loss of the rifle used in the shooting.

On December 2, John Russell, 47, of St. Albans led wardens on a high-speed pursuit after wardens attempted to stop him for allegedly aiming a loaded muzzle loader out the window of his vehicle at a deer decoy. The pursuit ended with wardens conducting a high-risk vehicle stop, and he was arrested and turned over to Chittenden County Correctional Center after bail was set by a judge. Russell was charged with one wildlife violation, along with several counts for fleeing the scene, including a felony for attempting to allude an officer. He faces up to $4,500 in fines and up to seven years in prison.

On December 5, wardens responded to a tip of someone spotlighting deer along a road in Westford. Using a license plate included in the tip, they tracked down Stephen Daily, 62, of Westford, and found blood and deer hair in his vehicle. Wardens then executed a search warrant in the home of Kevin Daily, 66, also of Westford and discovered the carcass of a deer they believe was illegally taken. Both men were charged with multiple fish and wildlife violations, and face potential fines and jail time, along with a three-year loss of their hunting privileges.

“Vermont’s State Game Wardens were vigilant and effective this fall at protecting the state’s wildlife from poachers,” said Col. Jason Batchelder, Vermont Fish & Wildlife’s head of law enforcement. “They not only made several high-profile arrests, but we believe their presence on the landscape also deterred many would-be poachers and prevented several potential safety issues. The public provided us with numerous calls and tips this fall, showing that Vermonters will not stand for poaching. The vast majority of Vermont’s hunters are safe, ethical and law-abiding, and those few that choose to break the law should expect to see blue lights in their rearview mirror before long.”

If citizens have information about any illegal activity relating to Vermont’s wildlife, they can anonymously call Operation Game Thief at 1-800-75ALERT (1-800-752-5378) or report online at vtfishandwildlife.com. Rewards are paid for information leading to arrests.

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