Plea Of ‘No Contest’ To 46 Citations and $14,000 For Wildlife Violations

An Oklahoma man has entered a plea of “no contest” to 46 citations amounting to about $14,000 in fines in what officials say is one of the biggest wildlife violation cases in its county’s history.

handcuffsJoseph Dewayne Harris Jr., 23, of Bartlesville, Okla., entered the “no contest” plea on June 18. That means he did not admit to guilt but also did not enter any kind of defense to the charges.

According to this report in the Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise, Harris was charged with infractions from 2011 and 2012. An extensive investigation led officials to believe he had been committing wildlife violations since at least 2008.

“We think this had been going on from 2008 until now. We were able to document him with 108 infractions,” Washington County state wildlife enforcement officer Joe Alexander told the newspaper.

The Examiner-Enterprise reported that Harris was charged with multiple counts of hunting without a license, hunting deer without a license, unlawfully possessing wildlife not legally taken, exceeding the season bag limit of antlered deer, hunting turkey without a license, failure to check wildlife at check station, hunting spring turkey season by unlawful means, unlawfully baiting turkeys and exceeding the season limit on turkeys.

Harris was ordered to pay $7,500 in restitution. Harris was being held on other charges unrelated to the wildlife violations during Alexander’s investigation, and was sentenced to six years in prison for those other charges.

For the full story in the Examiner-Enterprise, click here.