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Closed Cases

Spencer Levi Traxtle (age 22) of Veneta, plead guilty to six charges, including Aiding in the Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Buck Deer (x3), Unlawful Hunting on the Land of Another, Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Cow Elk (No Valid Tag), and Unlawful Taking of Deer (Fail to Validate Tag).
 
Denver Daren Traxtle (age 26) of Springfield, plead guilty to four charges, including Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Trophy Deer on Land of Another, Aiding in the Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Buck Deer, Unlawful Hunting on the Land of Another, and Unlawful Possession of Elk Parts.
 
Stacy Daren Traxtle (age 48) of Marcola, plead guilty to two charges:  Unlawful Hunting and Taking of Trophy Buck Deer on Land of Another (x2). 
 
The arrest and prosecution of the three men was conducted by troopers of the Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Division, Springfield Patrol Office.  The investigation began with the discovery of trail cameras recovered on private property in the Goshen area of southern Lane County.  Subsequently, search warrants were executed at three separate locations.  Police determined that at least three trophy black-tailed deer bucks had been unlawfully taken by Denver and Stacy Traxtle during the 2016 and 2017 hunting seasons on private property without the owner’s permission.
 
Additionally, the investigation determined a cow elk and another deer were taken illegally by Spencer Traxtle in December 2017 at a separate location near Marcola.  Investigators seized two scoped rifles, a compound bow, trail cameras, all remaining meat, and head and antler mounts, all of which the Court ordered forfeit.
 
All three men were sentenced to three to five years court probation, and each had his hunting privileges suspended for the next three years.  The men were required to pay a combined $7000 restitution to the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, and an additional $500 to the Oregon Hunter’s Association Turn-in-Poacher (T.I.P.) Program.  Additionally, Spencer Traxtle is required to perform 120 hours Community Service work, while Denver Traxtle is required to serve four days jail.  All three men are forbidden by court order to participate in any hunting excursions, even as a non-hunter, while on probation.  

Edward Bernard Topor Jr (age 56) of Portland, plead guilty to two charges, including Using Dog or Bait to Hunt Black Bear and Removal/Parts of  a Wildlife Carcass/Wasting Wildlife.

Cody Eugene Veelle (age 25) of Molalla, plead guilty t​o one charge, Aid/Assist/Counsel/Share in Proceeds of Wildlife Violation.

Melanie Renae Stutes (age 24) of Molalla, plead guilty to one charge, Using Dog or Bait to Hunt Black Bear.

The arrest and prosecution of the three subjects mentioned was conducted by troopers of the Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Division, Portland Patrol Office.  The investigation began with the discovery of multiple baited bear sites, in multiple locations inside the Molalla Weyerhaeuser Tree Farm in the Spring of 2018.  The troopers discovered four trail cameras, which led to two separate search warrants that were obtained through the Clackamas County DA’s office.  The executed search warrants led to the interviews of Edward Topor Jr, Cody Veelle and Melanie Stutes. The Oregon State Police determined that two bears were killed over bait; one of which was wasted entirely and the other was partially wasted. The troopers also determined that several more attempts were made by the mentioned subjects to take bear over three different bait sites during the fall 2018 bear season.  

Investigators seized a 12 gauge shotgun, and four trail cameras, all of which the Court ordered to be forfeited.

Edward Topor Jr. was sentenced to twelve months court probation, and had his hunting privileges suspended for the next five years.  Mr. Topor was sentenced to pay $1200 in fines and $2500 in restitution to the Oregon Hunter’s Association Turn-in-Poacher (T.I.P.) Program. 

Cody Veelle was sentenced to twelve months court probation, and had his hunting privileges suspended for the next three years.  Mr. Veelle was sentenced to pay $460 in fines.

Melanie Stutes was sentenced to pay $750 in fines.​

​On August 30, 2021, OSP Fish & Wildlife Troopers from Roseburg began an investigation from information obtained from an area resident into the potential unlawful take of a trophy class bull elk in the Glendale in Douglas County.  By September 6, 2021, two suspects were identified, interviewed, and charged with the crimes.  

The main suspect, Jeremy Pritchard (39) of Dillard, confessed to shooting the bull elk with a rifle on August 30, 2021, during the general archery season in the Powers Hunt Unit.   Additionally, the suspect used his general archery season Tioga Hunt Unit archery tag to tag the bull a day later after taking it with his rifle.  The suspect was cited and released for Hunting a Game Mammal Prohibited Method, Hunting Game Mammal Prohibited Area, Criminal Trespass while in Possession of a Firearm, Fail to Immediately Validate a Big Game Tag, and Unlawful Possession of a Game Mammal.  The suspect's accomplice, Dean Hickok (62) of Glendale in Douglas County, confessed to knowingly aiding the suspect in the processing and transporting of the illegally taken trophy bull elk.  He was cited and released for Aiding in a Game Violation.  

The elk antlers, game meat, and rifle were seized as evidence.

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