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Natural Resources Police Cite Five for Illegal Hunting

Photo of Natural 1 helicopterOfficers on saturation patrol for illegal deer hunters in southern Caroline County charged a Delaware man Saturday night with spotlighting a field.

An observer aboard Natural 1, the Maryland Natural Resources Police helicopter, saw a vehicle slowly approach the intersection of Gregg and Ellwanger roads near the Maryland and Delaware state line. The vehicle then illuminated an adjacent field.

Officers stopped Joseph Thomas Robbins, 35, of Harrington, and issued a citation for casting rays. Robbins has a history of similar illegal activities in Delaware.

The suspect is due in Caroline County District Court Jan. 12. The charge carries a maximum fine of $1,500.

Two men were charged with illegal hunting Saturday evening in northern Anne Arundel County.

An officer on patrol saw a Jeep with a climbing tree stand in the back parked in a gravel driveway off East Ordinance Road in Glen Burnie. Nearby, the officer found a bait pile, a trail camera and another tree stand.

Just before 6 p.m., two men carrying crossbows walked out of the woods and, upon questioning, acknowledged they did not have permission to hunt the area.

Edward Arnold Slouck Jr., 49, of Dundalk, and Melvin Lewis Hughes III, 45, of Stevensville, were charged with hunting on private property without written permission. Slouck also was charged with hunting without a license.

A hearing date is pending in Anne Arundel County District Court.

Officers charged two Garrett County men Saturday with illegal hunting and seized two rifles and two deer carcasses.

Forrest Mark Bachtel, 40, and Nathan Webster Cussins, 24, both of Oakland, were possessing deer in a closed season and aiding and abetting the importation of an illegally killed mammal. Bachtel also was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition and illegally participating in a junior hunt. A juvenile was issued written warnings.

Acting on a tip, officers went to a residence on Garrett Highway, where they saw two deer hanging in plain sight in a barn. A pickup truck with two rifles on the seat was sitting outside.

A man who approached the officers said the deer were killed in West Virginia and neither one had been field tagged or checked in. He then told the officers that the deer, a 4-point buck and a 6-point buck, were killed in a nearby field.

Two other hunters – Bachtel and the youth – arrived and agreed that the deer were shot in a nearby field. When they could not show the officers the shell casings or their footprints in the muddy field where they claimed to have fired, they acknowledged the deer were shot on a West Virginia farm.

None of the hunters had a West Virginia license.

During their investigation, officers learned that Bachtel had been prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm or ammunition. Charges also are pending in West Virginia.