Two Men Sentenced To Prison For Needlessly Killing Mother Bear And Her Cubs

U.S. Department of Agriculture/Public Domain

A father and son in Alaska were sentenced to jail time and more for killing a mother black bear and her two cubs.

After being caught on camera killing a black bear and her two cubs, an Alaskan father and his son have been sentenced to jail, hunting suspensions, and fines according to CNN.

41-year-old Andrew Renner will serve three months in jail and pay a $9,000 fine. He will be forced to forfeit his boat, trucks, firearms, poaching gear, and his hunting privileges for ten years.

Renner’s 18-year-old son, Owen, was sentenced to probation, community service, and is required to take a hunters’ safety course. He will lose hunting privileges for two years.

It is illegal to shoot black bears with cubs in Alaska.

Troopers said that Owen Renner fired at a bear sleeping in its den. Andrew Renner followed by killing the “shrieking” cubs, whose bodies were left outside of the den. Andrew and Owen Renner butchered the adult bear’s body and two days later, returned to the den in order to dispose of the cubs’ bodies and collect stray shell casings.

The bears were being monitored by the U.S. Forest Service and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game as part of a study. Therefore, a nearby camera caught the Renners in the act.

On video, Andrew Renner says, “It doesn’t matter. Bear down.”

After removing the bear’s tracking collar, Owen Renner said “They’ll never be able to link it to us.”

Andrew Renner then took the bear’s skin and collar to the Department of Fish and Game. He claimed that he hadn’t seen the cubs and did not know the bear was a nursing bear.

Assistant Attorney General Aaron Peterson said, "The defendant, and anyone else that would pursue game in our state, should be on notice that killing a sow with cubs and then poaching the cubs to cover it up, will result in a significant jail term and loss of hunting privileges.”

"People must know that poachers will be required to pay large fines and restitution for the illegal killing of the animals and that the vehicles, boat, planes, and instrumentalities used in wildlife crimes will be forfeited."

Andrew Renner has been convicted of eight counts and Owen has been convicted of four, including the unlawful killing and unlawful possession of the bears.