Grizzly killed illegally, two Moses Lake men sentenced - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Grizzly killed illegally, two Moses Lake men sentenced

SPOKANE, Wash. - Two Moses Lake men have been fined and sentenced, among other penalties, after illegally killing and transporting a Grizzly bear in 2007.

In October 2007, Brandon Rodeback, 26, and 30-year-old Kurtis Cox were hunting in Northeast Washington, near Ione, in Pend Oreille County. The pair spotted and killed a grizzly bear in a designated Grizzly Bear Recovery Zone and then transported the bear to Moses Lake where it was skinned and later buried.

Since 1995, the area has been posted with signs warning hunters about the presence of grizzly bears and new signs were posted in September of 2007. Grizzly bears are listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act and under Washington state law.

"When working to recover fish and wildlife species, any loss has a significant impact," said Mike Cenci, deputy chief of enforcement for Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. "This particular incident is even more unfortunate because we've lost a female grizzly, a vital member of a depleted bear population that produced offspring and never had a conflict with humans. She was important to the recovery of the species."

Rodeback and Cox were each placed on 5-years probation with the condition that they forfeit the right to hunt for two full years and complete a hunter's safety course. The pair must also each pay a $3,000 fine and jointly pay $14,857 in restitution to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

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