3 Putnam County, Ohio Residents Sentenced in Deer Violations

3 Putnam County, Ohio Residents Sentenced in Deer Violations

Ohio Division of Wildlife
Ohio Division of Wildlife

FINDLAY, OHIO – -(TheOutdoorWire.com)- Three Kalida residents were arraigned in the Putnam County Court during the month of December for hunting deer with the use of radios.

William J. Gerding, 53, Benjamin A. Gerding, 33, and Jason D. Ricker, 35, were cited on December 2, 2008 following a law enforcement project operated by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. The project was initiated after several complaints were received. One of the individuals was also cited for not wearing proper hunter orange during a deer gun season.

On March 9, 2009 the three men plead no contest and were found guilty by Judge Michael O'Malley. Benjamin A. Gerding received a total of $300 in fines, $150 in court costs and was sentenced to 70 days in jail. The jail time was suspended on the condition that he does not violate any similar law or wildlife rule for 2 years. He was also ordered to pay $500 in restitution for the deer that he harvested by use of radios. Jason D. Ricker received a $200 fine, $75 in court costs and was sentenced to 60 days in jail.

The jail time was suspended on condition that he does not violate any similar law or wildlife rule for 2 years. William J. Gerding received a $200 fine, $75 in court costs and was sentenced to 60 days in jail. The jail time was suspended on the condition that he does not violate any similar law or wildlife rule for 2 years. William J. Gerding's hunting privileges were suspended for 2 years due to his prior convictions of wildlife offenses. Additionally, because Ohio participates in a multi-state Wildlife Violator Compact, Mr. Gerding's hunting privileges will also be suspended in 31 other states.

All of the radios involved in the violations were forfeited by the court to the Division of Wildlife and the deer meat was ordered to be donated to a local food pantry. Judge O'Malley concluded court by saying that what these men were doing could not be considered sporting. He further stated that if this case had gone to trial and they were found guilty he would have fined them the maximum fines and suspended their hunting privileges for the maximum amount of time that the law would allow.

Judge O'Malley commended the Division of Wildlife for their efforts on this case and for the job they do.

Putnam County Wildlife Officer Jason Porinchok noted that public involvement played an important role in this case. Officer Porinchok encourages those with information on wildlife violations to call him at 419.429.8391 or use the 1.800 POACHER hotline.

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