DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. – From gunshots to bright, shining lights in the middle of the night, some Davidson County residents are concerned about possible night deer hunting which is illegal.
“Somebody’s house could be shot, somebody’s car, or possibly someone,” said Branden Jones, a wildlife law enforcement officer with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.
It’s a serious crime Jones and other officers from the NCWRC are trying to crack down on.
They are planting deer decoys in open fields at night in areas where residents have reported night hunting.
An officer plants the deer, made of foam and real deer skin, then waits, hoping to catch poachers in the act.
“Anything we can do to prevent this before it happens, that’s our message we’re wanting to get out,” Jones said.
Last year, Jones says they caught about half a dozen people in the county hunting at night due to the decoy.
It’s a crime Jones says that has a stiff penalty.
“It’s a class two misdemeanor, minimum $500, and there’s a possibility they could lose their license up to two years,” Jones said. “It’s a pretty serious offense.”