That is a somewhat hefty fine for the shooter but I'm still left asking myself, "thats it?" There certainly should be a lengthy loss of hunting privileges for all involved. The deputy should have lost his job. The other two men should have had larger fines and a lot more than the truck should have been seized.
Kudos for those who investigated the crime and found the truth but unless there just wasn't enough evidence to convict the D.A. let them off easy in my book.
Credit for this successful prosecution goes to Carron and other officers from the DOW office in Durango. Assistance in the case was provided by the Colorado Bureau of Investigations; the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office; the La Plata County District Attorney’s Office; the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish; the California Department of Fish and Game; and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Cost to bring justice: $10,000 in billable man hours. (Just a WAG, although probably not too far off considering probably 10 different people worked on the case and you assume 40 hours to each person.)
Hmmm.... sometimes I think the fine should scale to the cost to catch somebody.
I'm not seeing how it is "obvious" that political pull had anything to do with sentencing. I would be willing to wager that $4,200 (Assuming no priors), is right in line with CRS sentencing guidelines.
I must admit that I have missed a big game animal with a rifle. And not only was it a bull elk, it was the largest bull that I have had in my sights with a tag in my hand. But, as with most "missed shot" stories, I have an excuse. Moisture doesn't really ever bode well for hunting equipment. When moisture (either rain or snow) gets into a firearms barrel, nothing good takes place. A couple rain drops down there can change the point of impact drastically and a barrel jammed with snow after a...