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Arizona Game And Fish Offers Reward For Information On Poached Elk

The illegal killing of a cow elk in a rural part of Central Arizona has the Arizona Game and Fish Department asking the public for help.

The killing happened about 10 miles outside the little town of Strawberry, likely on Nov. 10 or 11. Arizona Game and Fish is offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to an arrest in this case.

Scott Fischer manages the department’s Operation Game Thief, which has a 24-hour hotline aimed at nabbing poachers across the state.

The agency is asking people with any information on the case to call its 24-hour hotline, aimed at catching poachers, (800) 352-0700. Callers should provide case number 17-004469. Information obtained will remain confidential, and callers may remain anonymous upon request.

Fischer said the program’s hotline gets between 500 and 1,000 credible reports of poaching a year. When a call leads to an arrest, the agency offers a reward.

But Good Samaritans often don’t want to accept it.

“And then once we explain that the money is not coming from Game and Fish, it’s coming from the poachers, then they’re usually very happy to take the money," Fischer said.

Those rewards come from the civil fines paid by the poachers.

News Science
Stina Sieg was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2013 to 2018.