To help manage the deer population Assateague National Seashore has an 2 day deer hunting season, and to provide a unique recreational opportunity. In January 2011, Justin Eason and his father John Eason were taking advantage of the 2 day deer hunt. Justin had the misfortune of not following the #1 rule of hunting, be 100% sure of your target. Justin took down a 28 year old mare wild horse instead This was bad enough, but then he and his father lied about it.
Justin will be paying $5,000 in fines and restitution, and 18 months probation, also banned from hunting on federal lands. John will be paying $1,000, and 12 months supervised probation. Both of them must take and pass successfully a hunter's education course as well.
"He put everyone out there at risk and destroyed an iconic symbol of Assateague through his irresponsible behavior," the chief ranger said in a release from the seashore.
The ranger also noted that had the hunter and his father reported the violation immediately and "not lied about it numerous times, the penalties would have been much less severe." From National Parks Traveler .