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Hunting Accident File > VIOLATIONS > 2006

Two Charged With Bear Hunting Over Bait

September 28, 2006

Chattanoogan.com

On Monday, September 25th, wildlife officers with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) arrested Ernest E. Proffitt, age 48 of Happy Valley, and James M. Collins, age 45 of Greenback, in the Bell Branch area of Happy Valley in Blount County.

The two men were on private property and hunting over an area that had been heavily baited with corn, breads, and pastries.

Both of the men were charged with hunting over bait and hunting without fluorescent orange. They are scheduled to appear in Blount County General Sessions Court on October 27, 2006.

The black bear hunting season opened in Blount, Cocke (south of I-40), and Sevier counties on Monday, Sept. 25 and will continue through Oct. 1.

Wildlife officers from Blount, Grainger, Jefferson, Loudon, Monroe, and Sevier counties had been conducting surveillance on the baited area that was heavily baited and was being frequently used by bears.

Tennessee law prohibits hunting any species over a site where bait has been placed to feed or attract wildlife unless all the bait has been removed at least ten days prior to hunting.

Wildlife officers have several other sites in Blount and surrounding counties under surveillance and will go to whatever length necessary to arrest and prosecute poachers hunting over bait.

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