DANDRIDGE, Tenn. — Killing the biggest buck that at least one state wildlife official has ever seen in Jefferson County netted a man a nearly $10,000 fine.
The fine was imposed Tuesday under Tennessee legislation enacted within the past two years that increases financial penalties on those convicted of illegally killing big game.
Clarence Robertson, 63, of New Market, Tenn., shot an 11-point buck Thanksgiving morning from his driveway, about a half mile south of city limits, according to a report on Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s Facebook page. The deer was in a hay field across the road where Robertson did not have permission to hunt.
He drove his truck into the field, about 25 miles northeast of Knoxville, and retrieved the deer, according to the report.
A Jefferson County wildlife officer, Wayne Rich, later seized the deer and gave it a rough Boone and Crockett Club score of 143⁶⁄₈.
The new provisions in state law, which became effective in July 2015, allow a judge to impose enhanced restitution fees for illegally killed or possessed trophy deer.
The more antler points on the rack, the higher the cost. In this case, the minimum was $1,000 for the deer plus $750 for each antler point.
The case was heard in Jefferson County General Sessions Court here. Robertson was assessed a $9,250 fine as well as a $50 fine and $269 in court costs.
His hunting privileges also were suspended until he pays the restitution.
“It was probably the biggest buck I’ve ever seen in Jefferson County,” Rich said.
The Jefferson County High School Future Farmers of America Hunters for the Hungry Club paid for the deer to be processed and donated its meat to charity. The hide and antlers were given to the owner of the property where the deer was shot.
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Knoxville (Tenn.) News Sentinel