Michigan Man charged with 125 wildlife crimes following DNR investigation
A 56-year-old Pickford man was arraigned Wednesday morning in Chippewa County’s 91st District Court on 125 wildlife misdemeanor charges, following a months-long investigation by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division.
Kurt Johnston Duncan faces charges that include illegally harvesting 18 wolves over the past 18 months and killing and disposing of three bald eagles. Wolves are protected in Michigan and are on the federal endangered species list. Bald eagles are protected under state law, as well as the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. Duncan, who pleaded not guilty to all charges yesterday, faces:
Up to 90 days in jail and $1,000 fine for each wolf.
Up to 90 days in jail and $1,000 fine for each eagle.
Restitution of $1,500 per eagle and $500 per wolf.
Up to 90 days in jail and $500 fine each for the other wildlife crimes.
Duncan was served four search warrants in March. Other species involved in the charges include deer, turkey, bear and bobcat. DNR law enforcement detectives said that Duncan was using the animals for a variety of reasons, including crafts, selling, or disposing of them, and stated that he was catching the animals because he could and “likes to do it.”
Conservation officers collected evidence to support the charges and identified additional suspects who are expected to be charged in the near future.
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