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Tip Following News Reports Lead to 2 Suspects in Creswell Deer Poaching Case
Sergeant Andy Heider
OSP Fish & Wildlife Division
(503) 934-0338

Photograph link valid for 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
Following this week's news reports, a tip from a person who wishes to remain anonymous helped an Oregon State Police (OSP) Fish & Wildlife Division trooper solve a case in which a buck deer was shot, butchered and dumped in the Creswell area. This was the second recent poaching case in the Lane County area that troopers were able to identify a suspect after someone provided a significant tip. While investigating the related case, the trooper was contacted and provided information regarding a separate wildlife crime that led to a third person being cited.

After the remains of a deer were found dumped at the end of Idyllwild Street off of 10th Street in Creswell, an investigation by OSP Trooper Marc Boyd indicated the crime happened on or about July 12, 2009. Trooper Boyd had very little information to help identify the suspect(s) responsible for this crime. A news release was issued July 20th announcing two rewards, one up to $500 offered by the Oregon Hunter's Association ‘Turn in Poacher' (TIP) program and the other up to $2,500 by the Humane Society of the United States and The Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust.
On the evening of July 22nd a tip was provided to Trooper Boyd that led him to two suspects identified as CODY JAMES ESSELBURN, age 18, and LUKAS JOSEPH CASE, age 20, both from Creswell. The follow up investigation led to both being cited and evidence seized.
ESSELBURN was cited to appear in Lane County Circuit Court for Unlawful Take of Buck Deer and Placing Offensive Substance on Property of Another. CASE was cited to appear for Aiding in a Wildlife Violation. Evidence seized included deer meat, 3x4 velvet buck horns, and a rifle.
While in Creswell, Trooper Boyd was contacted by a local resident that gave him information about a man who struck a deer with his vehicle, loaded it in his pickup and was driving around trying to find someone to take the deer from him. The man was reportedly also showing off a set of deer antlers he had taken from the dead deer.
Trooper Boyd's follow up investigation on the second case led to MICHAEL EUGENE CLAUSEN, age 50, from Creswell. CLAUSEN was cited to appear in Lane County Circuit Court for Unlawful Possession of Buck Deer Parts.
"Both these cases are excellent examples of how people can help protect our state's wildlife and natural resources. Those who break the law seem to have a lot of time on their hands to commit the crime while police have a limited amount of time to be out in the field preventing these from happening. Whether a reward is offered or not, people stepping forward to help us investigate crimes is critical in solving these cases," said Trooper Boyd.
The Turn-In-Poachers (T.I.P.) reward is paid for information leading to the arrest/conviction of person(s) for the illegal killing, taking, possession or waste of deer, elk, antelope, bear, cougar, big horn sheep, mountain goat, moose, upland game birds, and waterfowl. T.I.P. rewards can also be given for the illegal netting, snagging, or dynamiting of salmon, steelhead, sturgeon, or large numbers of any fish listed in Oregon Statute as a game fish. In addition, a reward may be issued for information that results in an arrest/conviction of a person who has illegally obtained Oregon hunting/angling license or tags.