August 26, 2011

Crapo on Grizzly Bear Shooting

Urges swift and fair treatment for accused

Washington, DC - The U.S. Attorney for the District of Idaho recently filed federal criminal charges under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) against Jeremy Hill of Porthill, Idaho, for killing a grizzly bear on his property on May 8, 2011.  Idaho Senator Mike Crapo, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) which handles oversight of the ESA, says that Mr. Hill deserves swift and just treatment, and urges the federal government to show fairness and common sense when considering the case. 

"I have deep concerns about this incident and the decision of the government to prosecute Mr. Hill, who did what any parent would do in this situation.  Clearly, Mr. Hill thought that his family was in danger and was protecting them from harm.  I understand that the Endangered Species Act is intended to protect threatened and endangered species, but Congress never intended to do so at the expense of basic public safety and the ability to protect oneself or their loved ones in the face of danger.  The American people need to know that they can protect themselves, their families and property when threatened by federally protected wildlife, and that the government will support their right to do so.

Mr. Hill and his family deserve for this matter to come to a fair and swift conclusion, and once that happens, Congress needs to get to work on commonsense ESA reforms to ensure that this deeply unfortunate situation never happens again.  In the meantime, I am going to work with my delegation colleagues and the governor to ensure that Mr. Hill and his family get the fairest possible treatment under the law and can move on with their lives."