Off-Duty Police Officers Nab Suspected Deer Poachers

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Two off-duty Peoria police officers were in the right place at the right time and nabbed two suspected poachers during a recent deer hunt on the Kaibab Plateau in northern Arizona.

Officer Scott Thrasher and Sgt. Bob Pottenger were archery hunting when they saw a deer herd run through a ravine, heard a vehicle stop nearby and then heard a gunshot.

The two officers then found two men coming out of a wooded area carrying a mule deer buck. Thrasher and Pottenger identified themselves as police officers, collected evidence, confiscated the deer and identified the suspects.

The next day, Game and Fish Department Officer Rick Langley issued the two suspects several citations. “Not only did officers Thrasher and Pottenger prove themselves true sportsmen, they also did good police work,” says Langley. “You never know who is out there listening and watching.”

Langley advises that the general public should never confront suspects. “Thrasher and Pottenger are police officers who are trained to handle such situations,” he says.

Anyone observing a wildlife violation should note license plate numbers, vehicle descriptions, and physical descriptions of any suspects along with the time and location of the incident, and call the department’s Operation Game Thief Hotline at (800) 352-0700.