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Man Sentenced for Waste of Bighorn Sheep; Ordered to Forfeit Head & Horns
Sergeant John Katzenstein
Oregon State Police - The Dalles
Fish & Wildlife Division
Office: (541) 296-9646

Photograph link valid for 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
A Gresham-area resident was sentenced last week in Gilliam County Circuit Court after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor waste of wildlife crime. The court's sentence included suspension of hunting privileges, restitution payment, and forfeiture of the head and horns of the bighorn sheep he killed and left to waste.
During November 2008, Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Trooper Sean Carothers was off duty when he contacted RONALD EDWARD CECIL, age 49, from Gresham, near the John Day River. CECIL was hiking out of the area with the head and horns of a bighorn sheep. An investigation revealed that CECIL possessed the proper tag and had lawfully taken the bighorn sheep during the E. John Day River #3 bighorn sheep hunt. During the contact, Trooper Carothers was suspicious that CECIL did not recover the meat from the sheep as required by law.
Trooper Carothers, assisted by Senior Troopers Joel McNerney and Craig Gunderson, was able to find the bighorn sheep carcass in a field several days later. The sheep had been caped, and the meat was scavenged by predators and had gone to waste.
CECIL was cited by Senior Trooper McNerney for Waste of Wildlife, a class A Misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of $6250.00 and one year in jail.
On February 12, 2009 CECIL entered a guilty plea in the Gilliam County Circuit Court and was sentenced to the following:
  • $6,800.00 Restitution ($5,300.00 Suspended)
  • Twelve Months Bench Probation
  • Hunting Privileges Suspended for Two Years
  • Obey all laws
CECIL was also ordered by the court to forfeit the head & horns of the bighorn sheep.
Bighorn sheep tags in Oregon are highly coveted and extremely difficult to draw. Hunters may only draw one controlled bighorn sheep tag in a lifetime. There were only ten bighorn sheep tags issued by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife on the John Day River during 2008.