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3 hunters from Southern Illinois face charges, poaching violations over buck, bobcat and turkey

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Three Southern Illinoisans face criminal charges for allegedly poaching a buck, bobcat and turkey on private land following an investigation by the Illinois Conservation Police, according to a release from the state.

The three individuals include: Justin Bauersachs and Greg Cottom, of Pinckneyville, and Sally Albers, of Breese.

Conservation Police received a complaint in January about a potentially poached large white-tailed buck in Perry County, according to the release.

The officers began an investigation into the allegation and identified Albers as the hunter who allegedly harvested the deer. She did not have a hunting license or habitat stamp as required to lawfully take the deer, the release said.

A photograph was provided to conservation police indicating potential additional violations, including unlawfully hunting on properties without the landowner's consent. Through initial interviews, police determined Bauersachs assisted Albers with unlawfully taking the deer, the release said.

Search warrants were obtained through Perry County, and police discovered multiple violations and additional suspects during the investigation, according to the release.

On Dec. 10, conservation officers arrested Bauersachs under suspicion of criminal trespass to private property and multiple conservation violations in Jackson and Perry counties. Additionally, Cottom and Albers were each issued citations for conservation violations as a result of the investigation.

Bauersachs face numerous conservation citations in Perry County, including: unlawful hunting without the consent of a landowner (two counts); unlawful possession of a migratory game bird during closed season; unlawful possession of a protected species during a closed season; unlawful take of a turkey after legal shooting hours; unlawful possession of wildlife unlawfully taken; unlawful possession of wild turkey (two counts); failure to tag wild turkey immediately after harvest; failure to report harvest of wild turkey; falsification of deer harvest report; contributing to the unlawful take of an eight-point buck; and accessory to hunting without a valid hunting license.

Also in Perry County, Albers was cited for unlawful hunting without the consent of landowner (two counts); unlawful hunting without a hunting license; and unlawful take or possession of deer.

Bauersachs faces criminal charges in Perry County for criminal trespass to private property (two counts) and criminal trespass on a motor vehicle to a field capable of growing crops, the release said. Additional criminal charges are pending review by the Perry County state’s attorney.

In Jackson County, additional conservation citations were issued.

Cottom was cited for failure to register a bobcat harvest; unlawful possession of a bobcat pelt not tagged per federal regulations; unlawful possession of an unlawfully taken bobcat; and unlawful take of a bobcat without a valid permit.

Bauersachs was cited for possession of unlawfully taken wildlife; hunting without the consent of landowner (two counts); and unlawful hunting of a protected species more than a half-hour after sunset.

Albers was cited for hunting without consent of landowner (two counts).

Sheriff Jeff Bullard released a video on Sunday Dec. 19, detailing the results of the Sheriff’s Office administrative investigation into the shooting of inmate Fredrick Goss, 55, after allegedly attempting to grab an officer’s gun.


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Kallie Cox is a general assignments reporter for The Southern with interests in political science, crime and courts, immigration, and social justice. Kallie is a SIU graduate and joined the newsroom staff in 2021.

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