Deer Poacher Gets Unusual Punishment | Field & Stream

A Sportsman's Life

Competence is overrated

Deer Poacher Gets Unusual Punishment

Texas judge sentences a hunter who illegally shot a 19-point buck

Drinnon, poacher, texas, 19-point deer

Drinnon with the 19-pointer.

From Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

John Walker Drinnon did not have a good Christmas, according to a story on CBS Austin (Texas). Just four days earlier, the 34-year-old was sentenced for poaching a 19-point whitetail on private property with a rifle during bow season.

Illegally taking a trophy deer like that doesn’t quite rise to the level of horse thievery in Texas, but it’s apparently close enough. The Grayson County (which is archery-only to start with) judge ordered Drinnon to spend every weekend of hunting season for the next five years in jail and to pay more than $18,000 in civil restitution, and he was forbidden from buying a hunting license while carrying out his sentence.

Actually, the judge showed more mercy that I would have. A guy who’s over 30 years old undoubtedly knows better. I’d have yanked his license for life. But maybe the judge was feeling the Christmas spirit.

What would you have done?

Heavey is the writer of Field & Stream’s popular backpage column, A Sportsman’s Life. He loves to deer hunt, hoard gear, and irritate David E. Petzal. ... Continued

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