Monday, 17 June 2024

Officials investigate elk, deer killings

SOUTH LAKE COUNTY – An extensive, multicounty investigation is under way into the shooting deaths of three elk and one deer that occurred Saturday.

State Department of Fish and Game Warden Lynette Shimek told Lake County News that three bull tule elk – one massive bull, another large bull and one spike – as well as a doe deer were found shot at about 7 a.m. Saturday.

Hunters in the area witnessed the killings, said Shimek. Each of the animals were found approximately 50 yards apart on private property on the northeast side of Cache Creek.

Shimek said a total of five Fish and Game Wardens – including she and Loren Freeman from Lake County and several others from other areas – were at the site all day Saturday, along with four Lake County Sheriff's deputies, California Highway Patrol officers and the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office Henry 1 helicopter.

Cal Fire also responded, helping recover the bodies of the animals, said Shimek.

“They assisted Fish and Game in processing all of the meat so that none of it would go to waste,” she said, adding that the meat has been donated to charity.

In the case of the tule elk, Shimek said they belong to a protected herd. While there is hunting for the herd, only two tags are issued each year for a hunt in October.

Shimek said that, despite these recent killings, this year's hunt likely will continue. An incredible effort goes into organizing the annual tag drawings, she said, with thousands of people putting in for the hunting permits.

No arrests have been made so far, said Shimek, with the investigation expected to continue over the next several weeks.

“We have several suspects that are going to be questioned in the case,” she said.

Shimek expressed her gratitude to the agencies that assisted Fish and Game in responding to the site of Saturday's poaching and conducting the initial investigation.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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