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Just read this today and didn't know if others have seen it yet. There also passed a law that says deputies cannot wear body cameras. I have a couple thoughts here: First, I think it would rare that someone would kill a bear or elk by mistake. Possible, but more likely just plain careless. Secondly, why wouldn't they allow deputies to wear cameras? Deputies get a lot of flack for being unprofessional and sometimes over-zealous, so why wouldn't they allow them means to protect themselves against unjustified accusations. Or evidence of wrongdoing if that is the case. Plus, I think it would provide a little physical protection, too. Someone might be a little less likely to assault them if they know they are being recorded. I am not sure I see any real benefit to this law.



HARRISBURG, Pa. (EYT) – Governor Tom Wolf recently signed into a law Act 3, which makes a few changes to the Commonwealth’s Game and Wildlife Code.

The new law will now allow hunters who accidentally kill a black bear or elk to turn it into state Game Commission authorities and not face possible suspension of their hunting or trapping license privileges.

“While it may not happen often, the Game and Fish Committee recognized that it can happen and it can be an honest mistake, so we wanted to include elk and bear to the law,” State Rep. Donna Oberlander said.

Oberlander voted for the act, which was unanimously approved in the House and Senate.

Currently, a hunter who harvests a deer or turkey of the wrong sex or accidentally takes two can turn the animals into a wildlife conservation officer and receive a new tag, pay a small fine and suffer no license revocation.

donna-oberlander

The new law does not change any of the other penalties hunters face for illegal out-of-season kills, except for the elimination of license revocations in those instances where the hunter self-reports and surrenders the animal.

Restitution for mistakenly killing bear or elk has been set at $100 for each animal killed.

For those who accidentally kill a deer, restitution is $25.00 per animal and for wild turkeys, $20.00. For other wild birds or animals, the cost is $15.00.

Endangered or threatened species are not included in the provision.

Violators who are on a payment plan to repay penalties and who are making on-time payments, may not have their hunting or trapping privileges suspended for failure to pay penalties.

For those who fail to respond to a citation or summons within 60 days or pay all penalties in full within 180 days following a conviction, they may have their license privileges suspended.

In an unrelated matter, the act also stipulates that deputy Game Commission officers or deputy wildlife conservation officers are not permitted to wear body cameras or other electronic devices while performing duties related to their position.

Rep. Oberlander said that provision has to do with training.

The provision will take effect on April 15.
 

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In an unrelated matter, the act also stipulates that deputy Game Commission officers or deputy wildlife conservation officers are not permitted to wear body cameras or other electronic devices while performing duties related to their position.

Rep. Oberlander said that provision has to do with training.

The provision will take effect on April 15.


I believe the author of the article is ill-informed, the officers are now deputy wardens .:grin2:
 

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The mistaken bear kill is a good change.

My cousin is as straight laced by the book as they come. 7-8 years ago a smallish bear steps out of cover onto some blowdowns. He decided to shoot his first bear. At the shot it jumped/fell behind the blowdown, then ran for the end of it. As it cleared the blowdown he dropped it clean with his follow up shot. He walks up to find 2 bears laying, one at each end of the tree. They weighed about 115/120 each. Some others at the camp offered to tag one but he was insistent on doing things the right way.

3 months several thousand dollars and no bear later he was relieved to walk out of court with hunting privileges intact. Even now years later the joy of the hunt is not fully returned for him. He know hunts with a single shot that he will not even reload until he’s checked for blood from the one. He’s a good hunter and frustrating to see him work so hard to avoid the possibility of being a “repeat offender“ and losing his license.
 

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I don’t get the reasoning behind deputies not being allowed to wear cameras. The mistake kill is probably a good thing. Seems designed for situations like catawissas cousin. Mistakes surely happen. My grandpa had a similar situation in the 70s where he shot two spike bucks, they never let him live that one down in camp till the day he died lol.
 

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so a state agency doesnt want their officers to wear body cams, but the Governor and hundreds of politicians want ploce officers to wear body cams ??

i saw two WCO's two years ago wearing body cams here in Erie County. maybe they were testing them ?
 

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Note WCO's silence. They hate bodycams, and are afraid their deputies will quit if held accountable.
Read up on PA citizens/press access to body cam footage or officers complaint records. Protected.
 

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Note WCO's silence. They hate bodycams, and are afraid their deputies will quit if held accountable.
Read up on PA citizens/press access to body cam footage or officers complaint records. Protected.
Totally not true. It's a matter of law. Research before you make such statements.
 

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body cam footage can be protected. its department policy to release it or not. even with right to know laws, it might take a court battle to get the footage.
the local county prison here and the DA's office never did release any footage of the incident where an inmate was beaten by officers to the point of being on life support. the county settled for 1.5 million, and no criminal charges were filed. the inmate was white and in jail for not paying fines.
 

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Note WCO's silence. They hate bodycams, and are afraid their deputies will quit if held accountable.
Read up on PA citizens/press access to body cam footage or officers complaint records. Protected.
You shouldn't make ridiculous statements when you don't have the right answer and they prove your bias and that you don't have a clue what you are talking about.

The WCOs all love their body cameras because they prove that people make up stories that aren't true about how they were abused by the Game Commission. The body cameras have proven time and again that the officers acted both professionally and appropriately even when the person they were dealing with was being an idiot.

Deputies don't wear body cameras because the State Legislature doesn't allow them to wear them. Most likely because they know the bodycams would show how polite and professionals the deputies are too.

They sure wouldn't want that though since it would destroy their frequent narrative of out of control Nazi type Game Commission Officers.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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In this day and age there is NO place for volunteer law enforcement , now is a good time to get rid of deputies
 

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In this day and age there is NO place for volunteer law enforcement , now is a good time to get rid of deputies
Im sure their wont be deputies someday. Im sure the deputies numbers have to be down from how many their were in the past. To expensive to become a deputy
 
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