Elk NetworkTips from Public Lead to Conviction for Idaho Wildlife Crimes

General , Poaching | November 8, 2022

Below is a news release from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. For 2022, Fiocchi partnered with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to increase the visibility of poaching incidents in an effort to reduce poaching nationwide.

On Oct. 24, 2022, Brayden Froehlich was sentenced in District Court in Madison County, Idaho for multiple wildlife crimes including one felony count of unlawfully killing, possessing or wasting wildlife and one misdemeanor count for hunting with a revoked license. Froehlich’s initial 2-year license revocation stemmed from a prior prosecution in 2020 after officers received a tip from the Citizens Against Poaching (CAP) hotline, alerting them that Froehlich had killed a deer with a rifle during archery season. In addition to his wildlife crimes, Froehlich was also convicted of a felony burglary charge that occurred in Madison County.

An intensive investigation by Idaho Fish and Game Conservation Officers and the Madison County Sheriff’s office turned up charges for seven illegally taken animals by Froehlich, including one 5-point white-tailed buck, one 2-point white-tailed buck, three white-tailed does, one bull elk, and one pronghorn antelope. These wildlife violations occurred during the months of July and August of 2021 near Rexburg in Madison County.

“Often times people fail to report wildlife crime because they don’t think that it is important, or they don’t think anything can be done,” says Regional Conservation Officer Barry Cummings. “A large majority of the cases that conservation officers are able to take to a successful prosecution started with a tip from the public.”

As part of his sentencing, Froehlich received a lifetime hunting revocation in Idaho and the 48 other states that are members of the Wildlife Violators Compact. He was also sentenced to a Rider program with an underlying sentence of 5 years in prison consecutive to a sentence of 6 years for the burglary charge. A hearing for sentencing on restitution has been scheduled for December 5th, 2022.

“No matter how big or small the violation may be, we greatly appreciate those individuals that call in with information to help officers make connections that solve wildlife crimes,” says Cummings. “A simple call can make all the difference in bringing wildlife violations to justice.”

If you have any information about a wildlife crime, we encourage you to “Make the Call” to the Citizens Against Poaching (CAP) hotline at 1-800-632-5999, 24 hours a day. Callers may remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward. In addition to the CAP hotline, people can contact their local Fish and Game office or any law enforcement authority.

(Photo credit: Idaho Department of Fish and Game)