Kimberley’s 2014 cull of 30 mule deer is effectively over as four of the five clover traps being used were vandalized and damaged on February 27.
Kimberley RCMP Cpl. Chris Newel says two suspects were arrested at about 2:30 a.m. February 27 after being observed damaging traps in Marysville.
“The suspects fled on foot to a vehicle,” Newel said. “A vehicle description was obtained and within a short time Cranbrook RCMP members located the vehicle on a side road south of Kimberley. Two males were taken into custody. A search of the vehicle located several items police believe were used to damage the traps. A search by a police dog located netting from the traps hidden in the bush near where the subjects were arrested.”
Four traps were damaged; the subjects are facing charges of Mischief and Wearing a Disguise while committing an offence. The two males, age 28 and 30, from Invermere went before a before a Judicial Justice of the Peace by way of teleconference Thursday afternoon. They were released for court in Cranbrook May 20th, with a $1000 bail under a number of strict conditions which include, not to enter the City of Kimberley, not to be within 500 meters of a Ministry of Forests or Ministry of Environment office or facility within the Province of BC, not to be with in 500 meters of any lawful deer trap facility, report to a bail supervisor and abide by a curfew from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Police will not release names of the accused until they appear in court.
“The bail hearing does not address the allegations only release, hence even though they have been charged our policy is to wait for court,” said Newel.
Mayor Ron McRae said with only one trap left, the cull is over.
“We can’t do an effective cull without sufficient traps. In effect the cull is done. The permit will run out and we will not seek an extension.”
McRae said that with the traps damaged in Cranbrook after a break in to the government yard in February, he didn’t believe there were any other traps left.
He did not say how many deer had been culled before the traps were damaged.
The investigation is continuing with the assistance of Conservation Officer Services. If anybody has further information with respect to the damage they are asked to contact the Kimberley RCMP.