COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KDVR) — A Colorado Springs man accused of illegally killing over a dozen big game animals across Colorado has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor poaching charges in three counties.
In a decision issued by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) last week, hearing examiner Steven Cooley permanently suspended Iniki Vike Kapu’s hunting privileges in Colorado. Kupu’s hunting ban also extends to the 47 other states that comprise the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact.
“Iniki Kapu is viewed as a serious threat to Colorado’s wildlife and his violations are among the worst. The severity and level of indifference for wildlife in this case are rarely seen and cannot be tolerated,” wrote Cooley.
This decision comes after a long investigation by CPW officers following a citizen tip in October 2018 in which a red truck was found abandoned in the Pike National Forest with a dead deer in the back with spoiled meat. Colorado law requires hunters to prepare all harvested big game for human consumption. Failure to do so can result in class five felony charges.
“Let this be a warning to anyone out there who is contemplating poaching wildlife in Colorado,” said Frank McGee, CPW area wildlife manager in Colorado Springs. “Colorado Parks and Wildlife aggressively pursues anyone who illegally takes wildlife. When you poach, you are stealing from all residents of Colorado.”
The list of big game animals Kapu had been accused of illegally killing in Teller, Fremont and Chaffee counties included deer, turkeys and a bighorn sheep ram. He has 35 days to appeal his lifetime suspension to the CPW Commission.
Anyone with information of a possible crime against wildlife is asked to call CPW.