Illinois Trophy Hunter Faces Poaching Charges

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Remember this colossal Illinois nontypical? We reported on the buck in this very space two short falls ago, and we mentioned it in our annual "Booner Awards," which highlights the latest entries in the Boone & Crockett record book, in the magazine the following summer. The 37-point goliath arrowed by Chris Kiernan in 2009 fell just short of breaking the Prairie State archery record for nontypicals, after a panel-scoring session of the Pope & Young Club earlier this year. Now, the mounted head is the property of the state of Illinois, and Kiernan--suddenly getting a very different type of publicity--is charged with 41 separate wildlife violations, some related to the very buck pictured here.

Here are the details according to a story in the Morris (IL) Daily Herald. Kiernan was charged with illegally taking the huge nontypical, and several other trophy bucks, from property owned by the Material Service Corporation. He was also cited for illegally hunting in Grundy County, illegally possessing the skull caps and antlers from deer, and failure to tag animals he had shot. All charges against Kiernan are criminal misdemeanors.

In addition to Kiernan, hunters from Ontario, Canada, and Avon, New York, have been charged with illegally hunting the Material Services property in the fall of 2009. The charges stem from a cooperative investigation between Illinois Conservation officers, U.S. Fish & Wildlife agents, and officers from the New York DEC and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.

UPDATE: Kiernan Pleads Guilty to Hunting Charges