OH: Hunter lies and is busted - gets slap on the wrist
September 14, 2010
George Little: Telling the truth and what happens when you don't
John Clay, who had been convicted of poaching 10 times in Ohio, had to
try it one more time. Hunting out of season in Ohio, he poached the
Since he shot the deer out of season in Ohio, Clay took it across the
state line into Kentucky, where it was deer season, and turned it in there.
It was the new Kentucky state record.
Clay put together such a great story and achieved such fame that he was
made a "pro staff" member of a TV hunting website.
Riding his wave of popularity, Clay was holding court in a "hero hunter"
booth at the Ohio Deer & Turkey Expo when an Ohio hunter recognized Clay's
trophy as the same deer he had taken pictures of the past summer - 60 miles
from the Kentucky state line.
Not only that, the Ohio hunter previously had showed his pictures and
video to the local game warden, because the deer was so big that he wanted
no shroud of suspicion should he be lucky enough to legally harvest the buck
he had nicknamed Big Boy.
Clay knew the jig was up when Ohio game warden Chris Gilkey came into his
booth and started laying down pictures taken in Adams County, Ohio, where
Big Boy routinely grazed in a bean field. Gilkey told Clay he knew the deer
was taken illegally and he could prove it. Clay caved. He said, "I can't
deny any of it."
In exchange for jail time, Clay paid a nominal fine, gave up his gun and
bow and has lost hunting privileges for life - in 34 states. Not much of a
punishment for a serial poacher who doesn't hunt legally anyway.
Clay claimed to be honestly sorry - here we go again.
Return to Hunting Accident Index
Fair Use Notice: This document may contain copyrighted material
whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owners. We believe
that this not-for-profit, educational use on the Web constitutes
a fair use of the copyrighted material (as provided for in section
107 of the US Copyright Law). If you wish to use this copyrighted
material for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must
obtain permission from the copyright owner.