Law enforcement seek person who shot pregnant deer
A pregnant deer was found shot and killed on the 300 block of 24th Street Tuesday evening. California Department of Fish and Wildlife Lt. Todd Tognazzini said that several laws were broken in the incident: it is unlawful to shoot a deer with an air riffle shooting pellets, shoot it off within city limits, to kill a female deer and to hunt outside of hunting season, which begins the second Saturday of August and runs for five weeks.
Tognazzini said that it was concerning that an air rifle was shot because it does not make the loud pop that regular rifles do and was shot in a populated area. However, because of the location, Tognazzini said there is a good chance that someone saw something that can lead law enforcement to find the shooter, who is facing misdemeanor charges that could result in up to a $1,000 fine and/or six months of jail time. However, Tognazzini said, jail time for such a crime is rare.
Although a hunter could shoot a male deer with a valid hunting license during the five-week hunting season in certain areas of the unincorporated areas of the county, it is never legal to shoot a deer with a pellet gun or to shoot a female. Tognazzini said that shooting the pregnant deer results in the death of three deer.
Though Tognazzini is not sure why the deer was shot, and did not hazard a guess as to why, he did note that there are many ways to deter deer from eating foliage without using deadly force, such as putting up fencing.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife is seeking any information anyone has on who shot the deer. To share that information with the department, call the CalTIP hotline at 888-334-2258.