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Riverton Man Convicted of Poaching Trophy Mule Deer Near Lander


LANDER - On Dec. 3, a Riverton man plead guilty in the Ninth District Circuit Court in Lander topoaching a large trophy buck mule deer. The incident occurred Oct.14, 2013 near Lander.

Joseph A. Holdren, 28, pleaded guilty to knowingly and intentionally taking an antlered mule deer without a license, hunting private land without permission and using an illegal firearm to take the deer.

Holdren illegally killed a large trophy class mule deer buck without a license on private land near Lander. He killed the deer with illegal ammunition, causing the rifle to be illegal. Recent changes to Wyoming Game and Fish Departmentregulations allow the use of the .223 caliber cartridge Holdren was using as long as the bullet weight is at least 60 grains and has a soft, expanding point. The bullet in Holdren’s ammunition did not meet these requirements.

The defendant was ordered to pay $12,340 in fines and restitution for the illegally taken mule deer. Holdren’s hunting and fishing privileges were revoked for the next 10 years in Wyoming and 39 reciprocal states. In addition, equipment used in the poaching incident was forfeited to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, including the .223 caliber AR-15 rifle used to kill the trophy.

“A huge thanks goes out to the anonymous individual who called the Game and Fish to report what was believed to be suspicious activity,” said Lander game warden Brad Hovinga. “It’s folks like this taking the time to report possible illegal activity that allows us to catch more of these criminals and successfullyprosecute them for their wildlife crimes.

“None of this would have been possible without the efforts of Deputy County Attorney Tom Majdic and his dedication to the successful prosecution of wildlife crimes. The support of County Attorney Michael Bennett and the Fremont County Attorney’s Office is unprecedented in this case.”

Like several investigations, this investigation started with an anonymous tip from the public. Poaching reports may be made to the "STOP POACHING" Hotline: 1-877-WGFD-TIP (1-877-943-3847) or 1-307-777-4330 forout-of-state "STOP POACHING" calls only. Violations may also be reported at regional offices or on-line at

(Contact: Rene Schell (307) 332-2688)



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