Woman Fined After Bragging to Dating App Match — a Game Warden — About Illegally Killing Deer
A woman looking for a date instead found herself with a fine after she boasted to the wrong person — a game warden —about illegally killing a deer.
Cannon Harrison, a 24-year-old warden with Oklahoma’s Department of Wildlife Conservation, was using the Bumble dating app last month when a woman sent him a message — seemingly in the hopes that it would be the start of a budding romance. But as their conversation went on, the woman soon bragged about the “bigo buck” she had just shot, according to a Facebook post by the department.
Initially, Harrison — who did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment — thought the woman was trying to make an ironic joke about his job, but he hadn’t included his occupation in his dating profile.
“Honestly, the first thing I thought was that it was someone who was messing with me because they knew who I was,” the game warden from McIntosh County told the Washington Post. “It seemed too good to be true.”
The reason Harrison’s interest was piqued? While licensed deer hunters were still allowed to shoot the animals using weapons such as a crossbow, the season in which they could use a rifle had already ended. When asked if she had used a bow, the woman told Harrison, “We don’t need to talk about that,” according to screenshots of their conversation posted to Facebook.
Harrison pressed on, asking the woman if she had used a spotlight. This was in reference to the illegal use of high-powered lights to distract nocturnal animals, who typically stare at the lights while hunters approach them.
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“Yeahhhh,” she texted back.
Once the woman admitted to using a spotlight on her ranch, Harrison proceeded to gather more information without letting on who he was or why he was so inquisitive.
After asking for pictures, the woman then sent three graphic photos, one showing the deer’s headless body, another showing its head laying in the back of a truck and a third showing her holding the deer by its antlers while being illuminated by a bright light.
The pictures also showed that only the deer’s head and back-strap meat were collected — another illegal act, the Tulsa World reported.
By using the clues he was given, such as her first name, the location of her ranch and the pictures, Harrison did some old-fashioned detective work and figured out who the woman was. By the next morning, the department paid her a visit at home.
“You can’t just ignore a broken law that falls right in your lap but was kind of a bummer,” Harrison told the outlet. “She said it was her first deer ever, too.”
The unidentified woman and an accomplice now face $2,400 in fines “on charges of improper possession of an illegally taken animal and taking game out-of-season,” according to Tulsa World.
“We’re reaching a day when everyone wants to talk and brag on social media,” Harrison said, “and it’s a great way to catch these individuals if you know how to use it.”
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