OH: Fines near $28K for buck poached in Huron County

Norwalk, Ohio – The DNR Division of Wildlife told a Huron County
man he must pay $27,851 in restitution for poaching a world-class
buck. The deer had an antler score of 2286⁄8 inches.

Arlie Risner, 58, of Bellvue, pleaded no contest in Norwalk
Municipal Court on Feb. 23 and was found guilty of hunting without
permission on CSX railroad property near Willard during archery
season. The court also suspended Risner’s Ohio hunting rights for a
year, and imposed a $200 fine.

Risner was informed in a letter April 7 from the DOW he will not be
allowed to hunt or fish in Ohio until the restitution is paid in
full.

Huron County Wildlife Officer Josh Zientek and DOW investigator
Jeff Collingwood, acted on a tip from a concerned citizen to CSX
police that the big deer had been taken on restricted property,
Zientek said.

“The deer was living in the area, and it was well known and had
been seen,” Zientek said.

The tip came two days after the deer was killed on Nov. 10, he
said.

“It was during the peak of the rut,” Zientek said.

The two investigators were able to locate a blood trail and gut
pile and extract DNA for a positive match.

“We were lucky with the weather,” Zientek said. “With rain, there
would have been no evidence.”

Risner denied killing the deer with a crossbow during an interview,
Zientek said, but officers were able to get DNA samples from the
deer’s meat, which had been taken to a local processor, which
matched evidence from where the deer had been killed, Zientek said.
The deer’s rack was also confiscated.

“Had it not been for a citizen’s tip to CSX, we would have never
known about it,” Zientek said.

Risner’s poaching conviction will be entered in a national database
maintained by the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact. Ohio is one
of 36 states that belong to the Compact. Compact states can suspend
hunting or fishing privileges for sportsmen convicted of wildlife
violations.

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