Agents with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service arrested two men last Friday for alleged hunting violations on Bayou Cocodrie National Wildlife Refuge.
The agents were on night patrol on Jan. 31 when they observed Duell S. Moreland, 23, of Monterey, walking down a trail shining a headlight in a searching manner, according to a press release.
With the aid of night vision goggles, the agents approached Moreland and identified themselves as police officers and instructed him not to move. He then attempted to escape on foot before being captured by the agents, the release states.
Moreland, who is currently awaiting trial for his role in illegally killing a Louisiana black bear in Concordia Parish, was found wearing a headlight, carrying a loaded crossbow with a night vision scope, a loaded .444 rifle and was in possession of marijuana and another person’s deer tags, according to the release.
At Moreland’s camp, agents found Ronnie Mason, 43, of Jonesville, who is a convicted felon who was allegedly in illegal possession of a firearm at the camp.
According to the release, agents also found a freshly-killed, untagged doe near the camp with propellor cuts on its body. The investigation revealed Mason allegedly ran over the deer intentionally as it attempted to swim across Bayou Cocodrie.
Moreleand, who surrendered to the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office on Nov. 18, 2013 for his alleged role in the killing of the bear, was booked into jail for hunting during illegal hours, failing to comply with deer tagging requirements, second offense illegal possession of marijuana, resisting an officer, possession of marijuana while in possession of a firearm, hunting deer using illegal methods and using archery equipment with illegal sights, the release states.
Mason was booked into jail for being a felon in possession of a firearm, hunting deer using illegal methods and failing to comply with deer tagging requirements.
Possessing a firearm while in possession of marijuana carries up to a $10,000 fine and five to 10 years in jail. Possessing a firearm by a convicted felon brings a $1,000 to $5,000 fine and 10 to 20 years in jail. Second offense possession of marijuana carries a $250 to $2,000 fine and up to five years in jail. Resisting an officer carries up to a $500 fine and up to six months in jail. Hunting deer during illegal hours brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail. Failing to comply with deer tagging requirements and using illegal sights each carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jai, and hunting deer using illegal methods brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.