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Prosecutor: Father, sons sentenced in Lane County poaching investigation

A father and his two sons pleaded guilty this past month to illegally killing and possessing deer and elk. (via Lane County DA)

EUGENE, Ore. - A father and his two sons pleaded guilty this past month to illegally killing and possessing deer and elk.

The sons entered their please this week. The father pleaded guilty May 17.

"The investigation began with the discovery of trail cameras recovered on private property in the Goshen area of southern Lane County," prosecutor Erik Hasselman said in a statement. "Subsequently, search warrants were executed at three separate locations."

The investigation by troopers of the Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Division found that at least three trophy black-tailed deer bucks had been unlawfully taken by Denver Traxtle and his father Stacy during the 2016 and 2017 hunting seasons on private property without the owner’s permission, Hasselman said.

Troopers also determined that a cow elk and another deer were taken illegally by Denver's younger brother Spencer Traxtle in December 2017 near Marcola.

"Investigators seized two scoped rifles, a compound bow, trail cameras, all remaining meat, and head and antler mounts, all of which the Court ordered forfeit," Hasselman said in a statement.

Spencer Levi Traxtle, 22, of Veneta pleaded guilty to six charges, including Aiding in the Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Buck Deer (x3), Unlawful Hunting on the Land of Another, Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Cow Elk (No Valid Tag), and Unlawful Taking of Deer (Fail to Validate Tag).

Denver Daren Traxtle, 26, of Springfield pleaded guilty to four charges, including Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Trophy Deer on Land of Another, Aiding in the Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Buck Deer, Unlawful Hunting on the Land of Another, and Unlawful Possession of Elk Parts.

Stacy Daren Traxtle, 48, of Marcola, pleaded guilty to two charges: Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Trophy Buck Deer on Land of Another (x2).

"All three men were sentenced to three to five years court probation, and each had his hunting privileges suspended for the next three years," Hasseman said. "The men were required to pay a combined $7000 restitution to the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, and an additional $500 to the Oregon Hunter’s Association Turn-in-Poacher (T.I.P.) Program. Additionally, Spencer Traxtle is required to perform 120 hours Community Service work, while Denver Traxtle is required to serve four days jail. All three men are forbidden by court order to participate in any hunting excursions, even as a non-hunter, while on probation."

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