Clinton Felton, 47, was convicted in New River Justice Court in Fallon stemming from an episode discovered by game wardens in October, 2011. Felton has been cited multiple times over the years for failing to visit his traps.
“This man continues to flout trapping law,” said Rob Buonamici, chief game warden with NDOW. “His negligence has caused needless taking of Nevada’s wildlife, and he has shown zero regards for wildlife or the law.”
Felton caught at least two animals in his trap line in Oct. 2011. A bighorn sheep lamb wandered into one Felton’s traps and died, along with a bobcat in a separate trap along the same line. Trappers are required to visit traps every 96 hours, according to state law. Trappers are also required to release animals that are inadvertently captured in traps. The animals were found dead in separate traps located at the top of the Stillwater Mountains, East of Fallon.
This was not Felton’s first brush with game wardens. He was convicted or forfeited bail for failure to visit traps four other times over the years. He was convicted first in 1991, followed by two separate incidents in 2001. He forfeited bail again in December 2009 and again just twelve months later in December 2010. Felton was also convicted in February of this year.
“There is no excuse for this kind of constant, unrepentant law breaking,” said Buonamici. “It’s unfortunate someone could have so much disregard for trapping ethics and the law. Most trappers abide by the trapping laws, and it’s not hard to do.”
Sportsmen and members of the public can report wildlife violations to Operation Game Thief at (800) 992-3030. To learn more about game wardens and wildlife in Nevada visit NDOW on the web at www.ndow.org.