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Delicate Question

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Long story short,

I tagged a buck in 223 with my archery license. Last weekend my family and I were party hunting in 168 and I used an anterless tag with my firearms license and an anterless tag with a bonus tag. I know that both of these areas are Managed status and I tagged one too many deer. It sucks because there were 10 other tags that could have been used and I just wasn't thinking.

Does anyone know what I can expect as far as fines and hunting privaledges go. I am devestated at the thought that I may loose the right to hunt. I called the DNR and was told by the customer service person that they did not know what would happen.

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Did you turn yourself in? Or did a CO write you a ticket? Thats not clear from your post and I think it might make a difference.

I'm not from Minnesota but I have hunted there and still occasionaly work there. From my point of view it is any easy mistake to make--the rules are really complicated. Course thats true of Ontario and Wisconsin as well.

There seems to be a big controversy over baiting--its illegal in Minnesota and I respect that, however there seems to be a lot of guys gettin charged with it. I don't understand how many guys call it unethical when it is perfectly legal in Wisconsin and Ontario and I think NODak too. This infraction would seem mikey mouse compared to baiting.

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Did you register all your deer? IF not, swap tags with someone you were party hunting with. If it was an honest mistake, it was an honest mistake. Are all the tags of your party used up? Not sure what to tell you without more information. I would probably have done the same thing if I had registered three deer in a managed area. Sucky situation but I think you will be fine. However it turns out, you might want to think about if you want to post the outcome. If its light, it could cause others to make "mistakes".

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96trigger,

I know what you are saying about posting the outcome, I had thought about that as well. Yes I did register them already. I also did call the area supervisor right away and informed them of what happended. I am a pretty anxious guy and wanted to know what the violation process and potential outcomes are. It sounds like I wouldn't know until after seasons are closed and registrations are matched up.

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I forgot all about registration--see what I mean about complicated.I wonder how many mistakes are made on mis-reporting which area deer are killed in anyway.

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You have two choices. You can come clean with a CO and hope nothing comes of it, OR you have someone else tag the deer and register it and they will have to use a tag and you will have to burn the bonus tag you've already validated. You will be out $15 but that would be it. It that way it turns out more like a paperwork error, that's all.

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Powerstroke,

I did your first suggestion and talked with a CO. It sounds like I need to wait to be contacted by an investigater after all the registrations from all the seasons are in. The second suggestion seems to be one that does not fit with my personal ethics.

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Right, the guy came clean and called the DNR, still get a kick out of the person at the DNR saying they don't know what to do.

Say, there is a person in the deer-bear-elk forum named Lou, sounds like he may work for the DNR, perhaps throw this question over to him.

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here is the problem, the DNR doesn't prosecute any violations, the local county attornies have to. The CO can decide or not to charge you with a Petty Misd or a Misd, or he can refer Gross Misd charges to the county Attorney's office for review. Then you can attempt a plea negotiation with the Co. Atty's office regardless of what level you are charged at (if at all). The DNR can't tell you what the County Attorney's office will do because they have no authority over that office. Even if the CO writes a ticket, the County Atty could dismiss it...

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What you think would be unethical would not be illegal. I would consider it a paperwork error and unfortunately you wasted a tag.

I would never steer you towards something illegal. I'm actually in school right now so I can hopefully someday become a CO.

I'm sure you will be cleared of any problems. Any CO with some common sense and compassion will realize its an honest mistake and you're trying to fix it by being honest about it.

Good luck. What I'm most proud of is you did the right thing. I expect that from everyone but it doesn't always happen. Thank you for your honesty and your candor.

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Lawdog and all.

Thanks for advise, encourgement etc. No resolution at this time. It is pretty much going to be a "wait and see what happens." Sounds like I need to wait until all seasons are done before final registration is over. The area supervisor said that an investigater will contact me. I'm really praying that my mistake will be seen as an issue of a "tagging error" and not a "taking error".

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Sounds like you are an honest guy...and I believe your story. Bottom line, like someone mentioned, the only thing you did incorrectly was register one of your deer incorrectly. If you were party hunting you did not do anything wrong except use the bonus tag that was in your name. Is it possible for you to obtain another tag from someone in your party...so when the investigator comes or calls to talk with you, you'd have a tag you could use? The one you should have used from the start? I guess I would just have that tag in my possession, explain my story, and say "This is the tag I should have used and John Doe can vouch for me.". At that point that's all you can do and hope for an understanding investigator. Good luck and keep us posted.

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