Gage Allen of Blackfoot, after reaching a plea agreement with the Bingham County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, was sentenced June 24 for various wildlife crimes dating back to 2007. In January of 2019, Allen was charged with numerous wildlife violations, including four felony charges related to illegally trapping and selling bobcats and illegally killing mule deer near Blackfoot, Idaho.
Idaho Department of Fish and Game investigators determined that Gage Allen was using illegal bait, often game birds like whole pheasants, placed next to his traps to illegally catch bobcats. He then profited by selling the unlawfully taken bobcats for as much as $1000. Investigators said that Allen admittedly knew what he was doing was wrong, but added that apparently the thrill of catching the cats and selling them for thousands of dollars led him to intentionally break the law.
In addition to illegal trapping activity and unlawful take of bobcats, Allen was charged with the possession of three unlawfully taken mule deer dating back to 2007. These deer had been killed by Allen after legal hours, in closed seasons and using another’s deer tag after already killing a deer and using his own.
According to the plea agreement, Allen pleaded guilty to five misdemeanor charges: unlawful take of a furbearer (bobcat), illegal use of game animals or game birds as bait, unlawful possession of unlawfully taken game (mule deer), trapping without a valid license and trapping within 30 feet of visible bait. The remaining 25 counts were dropped as part of the agreement.
For his crimes, Allen was ordered to pay $1825 in fines, restitution, processing fees and court costs and provide 100 hours of community service. His hunting and trapping licenses were both revoked by the court for a period of 9 and 15 years, respectively. While revoked, Allen may not accompany any others into the field who are engaged in hunting or trapping activities.