U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
A Spokane County, Wash., man has been fined $8,293 and put on home-electronic monitoring for 30 days after pleading guilty to killing two wolves in northeast Washington.
Terry Leroy Fowler, 55, of Liberty Lake was sentenced Thursday in Pend Oreille County District Court after pleading guilty to two counts of unlawfully taking wildlife. A third count against Fowler was dismissed as part of a plea agreement with the county prosecutor’s office. Fowler also received a one-year suspended jail sentence.
The plea bargain leaves two other wolf poaching investigations being conducted by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife in northeast Washington. Most of the state’s wolves are concentrated in four northeast counties, including Pend Oreille.
Wolves are not federally protected in the eastern one-third of Washington, but they are on the state’s endangered species.
The probe leading to Fowler’s conviction began in February 2016 with the investigation of a dead wolf near LeClerc Road in Pend Oreille County, according to WDFW.
Evidence at the scene led investigators to search Fowler’s cabin in Pend Oreille County and his residence in Spokane County. Investigators reported finding evidence of wolf trapping, and wolf hair, tissue, scat and two skulls. DNA analysis found the remains were from three wolves, according to WDFW.
The wolves were from within the range of the Goodman Meadows pack along the Idaho border, according to WDFW.
The unlawful killing of wildlife is a gross misdemeanor and punishable by up to a year in jail and a $5,000 fine. In Fowler’s case, he will pay WDFW $8,000 in restitution and $293 in court costs.
WDFW is also investigating the death of a radio-collared female wolf found Dec. 15 about 15 miles southwest of Republic in Stevens County. The wolf was once part of the Profanity Peak pack, according to WDFW.
Also, the department is probing the death of a female wolf found by hunters Nov. 12 within the Dirty Shirt pack territory about 10 miles southeast of Colville in Stevens County.
WDFW is asking for anyone with tips about either investigation to call (877) 933-9847 or (360) 902-2936.