Man gets 9 months in 'largest poaching case in Wyoming history

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A Sheridan County, Wyoming, man was sentenced to nine months in jail and fined $110,000 and must repay $144,000 in restitution after reaching a plea deal in a Wyoming wildlife poaching case.

The sentence is the culmination of a case against Gregg Lambdin. A search of his property in 2018 found one antelope and 113 white-tailed deer carcasses in varying stages of decomposition, according to a Wyoming Game and Fish Department press release.

Fourth Judicial District Court Judge William Edelman approved the conditions the plea agreement between the Sheridan County Attorney’s Office and Lambdin on On Oct. 17. Lambdin had initially pleaded not guilty but in August changed his plea to guilty to two misdemeanors and nine felonies for wanton destruction of big game animals.

Lambdin will serve his jail sentence in the Sheridan County Detention Center and began his incarceration immediately after the sentencing hearing.

“We do not keep records for penalties in poaching cases, but I cannot remember a case brought against a defendant that resulted in fines, restitution, and jail time of this magnitude,” said Game and Fish Sheridan Regional wildlife supervisor Craig Smith. “It is likely the largest poaching case in Wyoming history in terms of penalties against a single individual.”

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Charges against Lambdin were filed in February after a two-month investigation by Wyoming Game and Fish Department law enforcement officers in late 2018.

The investigation began after information was provided to Game and Fish by a member of the public about possible illegal activity on Lambdin’s property. A Game and Fish law enforcement officer began surveillance of Lambdin’s property. The officer saw multiple deer carcasses on Lambdin’s property and also witnessed Lambdin kill a deer. A search of license records showed that Lambdin did not possess a current deer license.

As required by state statute, fines imposed by judges in wildlife poaching cases are distributed to the public school fund in the county in which the violation occurred.

Restitution monies imposed by judges are given to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. The $144,000 restitution imposed by Judge Edelman will be placed into a fund used by the Game and Fish Commission for purchasing access easements to provide access to public and private lands.

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