SPARTA – The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has revoked two individuals’ hunting licenses for three years and issued a monetary penalty after the hunters shot and killed two horses on Jan.24, violating state Environmental Conservation Law.
According to a press release from the DEC, on the evening of Jan. 24, coyote hunters Christian Smith, 48, of Phelps, Ontario County, and Glenn Gosson, 47, of Fairport, Monroe County, shot two horses on Moore Road in the town of West Sparta, near the Nunda town line, sadly killing one and injuring the other.
The surviving horse was treated by a veterinarian and is expected to make a full recovery. Both Smith and Gosson were licensed and had permission to hunt on the property where the horses were shot.
Smith currently works as a lieutenant corrections officer with the Ontario County Sheriff’s Office. He was off duty at the time of the incident, but the Ontario County Sheriff’s Office is conducting its own internal investigation.
Since both hunters caused property damage while hunting, both will lose their hunting privileges for three years and have been ordered to pay restitution for the horses to include the value of the horse, burial fee and veterinarian bills. In addition, each hunter will pay a $200 penalty to the state. The Consent Orders were signed on Feb. 12 and 15.
The DEC added that many if not all hunting-related shooting incidents are preventable so long as shooters follow the primary rules of hunter safety including assuming every firearm to be loaded, controlling the firearm muzzle in a safe direction, keeping finger off the trigger until ready to fire, and identifying the target and what lies beyond.
PHOTO CAPTION: Note – These are not the horses that were shot. (Photo/Flickr.com)