Man who illegally shot trophy moose loses hunting privileges

February 16, 2022 GMT

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A Montana man has lost his hunting and trapping privileges for life in 47 states for illegally killing a trophy moose, taking the antlers and leaving the meat to waste, state wildlife officials said.

Shiloh Berry, 41, was sentenced Friday in Broadwater County District Court after pleading guilty last fall to unlawful possession of a game animal, hunting without a license and wasting a game animal in the 2019 killing, the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said Tuesday.

Berry was fined $6,100 and ordered to pay $6,000 in restitution for taking a trophy animal. The lifetime loss of his hunting and trapping privileges applies to the 47 states that participate in the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact.

A five-year prison sentence was suspended and Berry lost his fishing privileges for three years.

ADVERTISEMENT

Under Montana law, killing a moose that has antlers with a total spread of at least 30 inches (76 centimeters), constitutes killing a trophy animal and the restitution is $6,000, compared to $1,000 for killing a non-trophy moose. The moose Berry killed had an antler spread of 56 inches (142 centimeters) and it would have qualified as one of the 300 largest bull moose taken in Montana, FWP said.

Game wardens received a phoned-in tip in November 2019 after someone found a moose carcass with its head cut off in an area about 17 miles (27 kilometers) east of Townsend. Investigators found distinctive tire tracks and boot prints at the site, the agency said in a statement.

In April 2020, wardens received a tip that Berry possessed moose antlers that he claimed to have found in the area where the moose was killed. A search of Berry’s residence turned up the antlers along with boots and tires that matched the tracks at the kill site, FWP said.

When wardens interviewed Berry, he acknowledged killing the moose, the agency said.