Without a license, without any attempt to preserve the meat and without any dignity at all, a Virginia man who poached over half a dozen animals has finally had his day in court.
Toward the end of last month, the accused, Nelson Drummond, sat in front of the Honorable Judge Henry Barringer of the Buchanan General District Court, who was set to rule on an egregious poaching case that had been under investigation for over a year.
Kicked off on April 3, 2016, officials with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries investigated reports of a headless bull elk lying just 15 yards from a roadway. Gathering evidence over the months that would follow, investigators were led to Drummond, who they found had quite the history with illegally killed animals.
Obtained from evidence from the investigation, officials learned that Drummond’s weapon of choice was a .22 caliber lever-action rifle fitted with a laser sight. He would use this rifle to illegally kill three deer, a black bear, a bobcat and four recently-introduced elk.
Perhaps the most disturbing part of the ordeal is the manner in which Drummond documented his kills. Entitled “Poaching 101” as Drummond aptly labeled it, he would videotape much of the illegal activity he engaged in. Some of the footage that was recovered depicted the accused transporting the carcass of a deer to a bridge and throwing the corpse to the roadway below while laughing hysterically.
Judge Henry Barringer stated “There is no reason to kill animals in that nature,” and further characterized Drummond’s actions as “cruel,” as he handed down his heavy sentence in court. Included in Drummonds sentencing is 2,370 days plus an additional 6 months of incarceration, a 5-year loss of hunting privileges, and restitution of $25,500.