MN: Penalty for overlimit stings man who was shooting deer for city of Burnsville
Penalty for over-limit stings man who was shooting deer for city of
The owner of a deer-removal firm is sentenced for shooting 13 deer in a
refuge. He was authorized to hunt in an adjacent park.
February 4, 2011
The owner of a Bethel nuisance animal-control company that was culling
deer for the city of Burnsville has been ordered to pay $1,500 in
restitution for illegally killing 13 deer in a national wildlife refuge.
Mercer I. Englund, 66, owner of First Choice Wildlife Control, has
pleaded guilty to a charge of exceeding a hunting limit for wild animals, a
gross misdemeanor. He was sentenced last week to two years' probation. He
also forfeited two of his rifles and his hunting privileges were revoked for
Englund said he properly notified a Burnsville city official, who has
since changed jobs, of where he was hunting. He was authorized to shoot in
Cliff Fen Park but also was in the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge
next to it, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
"It wasn't what the charges are," Englund said Thursday. "The city
official knew exactly where I was working, but it's one of those deals that
you don't get to fight."
Englund said it was his word against that of the former Burnsville animal
control officer. Englund said he pleaded guilty to one charge in order to
get two others dropped and to cancel a Feb. 15 jury trial.
A call to the Turn In Poachers (TIP) Hotline a year ago lead state
conservation officer Tony Salzer to the refuge. Englund was permitted to
hunt in the adjacent park only, and he had charged the city for harvesting
22 deer at the park.
Englund and another man had been seen carrying loaded rifles into the
refuge. The DNR said Salzer, of Eagan, was patrolling when he heard three
shots fired and found a dead deer and trail of blood.
Englund told Salzer that he shot nine deer in the park, the DNR said.
"I explained to Mr. Englund that I knew he had reported shooting 22 deer
out of Cliff Fen Park and that if he had really shot nine deer in the park,
he had shot 13 in the refuge," Salzer said.
Englund agreed and admitted he knew he wasn't to shoot deer outside of
the park, the DNR said.
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