Tri-Cities Man In Heap Of Poaching Trouble

Meet The Dishonor Roll’s latest inductee: Jason Locke, who was fined a total of $11,345 after pleading guilty to poaching a bull elk and putting his wife’s tag on it.

That according to the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, which says that $6,000 of the fine was for illegally killing a trophy-caliber animal.

But that’s not all. WDFW says that the 37-year-old Kennewick man is also facing poaching charges in Chelan County, and allegations that he guided Columbia River steelhead trips without a commercial license.

And could lose his hunting and fishing privileges for two years and forfeiture of elk meat and hunting and fishing equipment seized as evidence in those cases.

According to the agency, game wardens got an anonymous tip that last October Locke had killed two bulls in the Blue Mountains and claimed one of them using his wife’s permit tag — a no-no under state law. He plead guilty March 9 in Columbia County District Court.

The informant also told WDFW that Locke had killed a buck deer near Chelan in 2009 using his wife’s permit tag, according to a press release issued this afternoon.

That allegation has lead to charges in Chelan County District Court of three counts of unlawful big game hunting and one charge of unlawful transportation of wildlife. He could face up to $6,000 in fines there, including a $4,000 criminal wildlife penalty assessment for taking a trophy-size buck, says WDFW.

In addition, Locke has been charged in Benton County District Court with unlawfully guiding fishing trips on the Columbia without a license and making a false report regarding fish and wildlife. Both are gross misdemeanors, punishable by fines of more than $2,000.

That case, which WDFW investigated in conjunction with the Oregon State Police, has been forward to the U.S. Coast Guard, since Locke also did not have a required Coast Guard license to guide commercial fishing trips, says the agency.

Two other men involved in the elk case — David E. Myles, 50, of Richland, and Brian E. Badgwell, 40, of Pomeroy – earlier pleaded guilty to charges of unlawfully transporting wildlife, according to WDFW.


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