June 03, 2011
Ohio Poacher Notches Record Fine for Taking Trophy Buck
By Scott Bestul
We’ve covered Ohio’s restitution system—which fines a poacher according to the B&C score of an illegal buck’s rack—in this space before. But a Buckeye State poacher recently received the highest penalty ever levied in the state. Arlie Risner, a 58-year old resident of Bellevue, Ohio, was fined $27,851 for killing a monster non-typical that scored 228-6/8” in November, 2010.
According to a story filed by D’Arcy Egan, outdoor writer for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Risner was ticketed by Ohio Division of Wildlife wardens for hunting without permission on CSX railroad property. Acting on a tip, officer Josh Zientek and investigator Jeff Collingwood visited the kill site and found evidence that Risner killed the whitetail on CSX land. Homeland Security rules prohibit any form of trespass on railroad lands and are strictly enforced by railroad security and wildlife officers.
Risner had originally intended to fight the ticket—which came with a $200 fine and a one-year suspension of his state hunting privileges—but claims he couldn’t afford the attorney fees. Risner says he was hunting on a relative’s land adjacent to the railroad property when he shot the buck, but it crossed the line fence before dying. Risner’s friend, who helped him recover and drag the buck, was also cited for hunting without permission. The restitution bill arrived in Risner’s mail in April. If he can’t pay the hefty fine, the attorney general may be called upon to collect the money.