Man pleads guilty to killing endangered gray wolf


The wolf was found dead near Summer Lake in 2016

Endangered Wolves_1547365186353

File-This Jan. 26,2007 file photo showing a Mexican Grey Wolf exhaling in cold weather as he walks in his den at the Stone Zoo in Stoneham, Mass. Federal wildlife managers are expected to announce Wednesday how many endangered wolves are in the wild in New Mexico and Arizona. Since efforts began in 1998 to return Mexican gray wolves to the Southwest, the population has never topped 60, far below what biologists had expected by now.(AP Photo/Elise Amendola,File)

MEDFORD, Ore. (AP) – A 22-year-old Oregon man has pleaded guilty in the killing of an endangered gray wolf.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Oregon says Colton Dick of Oakridge pleaded guilty Monday to unlawfully taking an endangered species.

Court documents say Dick used a rifle and scope to shoot the wolf Oct. 5, 2016, as the animal walked away in the Fremont-Winema National Forest.

An investigation began the next day when an adult female GPS-collared gray wolf known as OR 28 was found dead near Summer Lake.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service says OR 28 died as a result of gunshot injuries.

Under a plea agreement, Dick has agreed to one-year of supervised release and restitution of $2,500 to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, among other conditions.

If Dick complies, he will be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea and his charge could be dismissed.

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