First felony poaching charge filed against Lebanon County hunter

January 20, 2011

A Bethel, Lebanon County man was charged with felony poaching charges after being accused of killing seven deer in 2010 and four in 2009, said the Pennsylvania Game Commission this week.

William M. Kirkwood, 50, of Camp Strauss Road, Bethel, is the first person to be charged with felony poaching counts under new Game and Wildlife Code penalties that took effect in September, the Game Commission said.

He was also charged with fleeing an officer and trespassing, and could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and $64,000 in fines, said the Game Commission. Charges were filed with District Judge Michael Smith on Tuesday.

His brother, Theodore P. Kirkwood, 54, of Heilmandale Road, was charged with aiding and abetting his brother, fleeing an officer and trespassing, said the game commission. He faces total fines and penalties of up to $5,000 and nine months in prison.

The illegal deer kills occurred on the property of the Greater Lebanon Refuse Authority landfill, where witnesses reported seeing hunters Dec. 11, said the Game Commission.


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