Last December, two men killed a critically endangered Mexican gray wolf in Arizona. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service investigated the killing and the Department of Justice charged the men responsible. Yet the wolf killers got off without serious consequences.
In fact, the vast majority of wolf killings do not result in prosecution. And when prosecutions do occur, penalties amount to a slap on the wrist. Take Craig Thiessen, a public lands grazing permittee in New Mexico, who beat a juvenile Mexican gray wolf to death this past May. Thiessen paid a meager $2,300 fine and was placed on probation, but his grazing permit was not revoked.
Guardians strongly believes the Department of Justice should uphold the law and send a message to wolf killers by levying the highest possible penalties. Without real investigations, real prosecutions, and real penalties, lobo killings won’t be taken seriously. And with only 114 lobos remaining at last count, that’s a risk we can’t afford.
Read the press release.