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Three bull elk illegally killed in Fairfield, WDFW seeks public's help to find poachers

Two bulls were illegally killed during the weekend of Dec. 31, 2021 while the third was left paralyzed in frozen conditions.

FAIRFIELD, Wash. — A poaching case involving three bull elk in Fairfield is currently being investigated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

According to a press release from WDFW, two bulls were illegally killed during or around the weekend of Dec. 31, 2021. The third elk was shot and left paralyzed in the frozen conditions.

The animals were illegally killed outside the town of Fairfield in Spokane County in a privately-owned field off East Adams and Marsh Roads, located approximately five miles from the Idaho border.

WDFW Police Sergeant Tony Leonetti called the act "an appalling act of poaching large, branch-antlered elk” and “a blatant disrespect of natural resource rules, ethics and conservation.”

According to the press release, the animals were discovered by a witness on Sunday before they reported the scene to WDFW police. The paralyzed elk was humanely put down while the two headless elks were recovered by officers.

“The loss of these mature elk is a blow to the local population and for future opportunities for ethical hunters who are following the rules,” Leonetti said. “We rely on tips from the public as they are often our eyes and ears that lead to arrests on cases like this.”

WDFW officials urge anyone with knowledge of this case to report in one of several ways: call 877-933-9847, email WDFW's poaching tip email  or send a text tip to 847411. The public can also report online on WDFW's website. These tips can be provided anonymously. 

A monetary award or bonus points towards special hunts are available for information leading to an arrest.

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