McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Local News

December 9, 2010

Trophy deer earns fine for McAlester state rep

McALESTER — State Rep. Terry Harrison, while hunting in Scipio during rifle season, shot a piebald white-tailed deer. Harrison, who was truly excited about the hunt, spoke with reporters Dec. 2 about how he had already sent the deer to a taxidermist in Krebs to have his trophy full-body mounted. “I’ve never been more excited about taking a deer in my whole life,” Harrison told reporters.

Harrison had come to the McAlester News-Capital office to submit his story to the paper along with a photo of himself with the deer. On Friday, the News-Capital reported Harrison’s kill on the front page of the sports section.

Shortly after the story was released, various members of the community contacted the News-Capital with complaints regarding Harrison’s “illegal” hunt of the rare deer.

In an interview Tuesday afternoon, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s Assistant Chief Bill Hale said, “It is not illegal to shoot a piebald deer. You can shoot one, you just have to have a permit prior to shooting one. There’s no cost for this permit; you just have to get one prior to the hunt of white, or piebald, deer.”

Shane Fields, a friend of Harrison’s and an Oklahoma Department of Wildlife game warden, called the proud hunter after seeing the story in the paper. Fields, who told Harrison that his kill may have been illegal if he hadn’t obtained a permit prior to the hunt, suggested that the state representative research the hunting regulations and guidelines.

Harrison did just that. “My heart just sunk,” Harrison said in an interview Wednesday afternoon regarding the moment he realized his mistake. “This is embarrassing ’cause I should have known better.

“But at least others can learn from my mistake.”

Harrison — who has degrees in animal science and law, has served in the legislature and on the wildlife committee several times, and even helped to write some of the state’s hunting laws — had no idea that he needed a special permit to shoot a piebald deer.

“If I didn’t know that a piebald was considered white in the state of Oklahoma, then a lot of my fellow sportsmen also don’t know,” Harrison said. “I’m the guy who’s supposed to know the difference. So if I made this mistake, other sportsman probably will too. I want people to learn from my mistake and not make the same one.”

As soon as he realized his mistake, Harrison called the Department of Wildlife Conservation and spoke with Lt. Game Warden Todd Toby. “I asked who I was speaking with,” Harrison said, “and then I said, ‘Todd Toby, this is Terry Harrison. I think you’re gonna have to write me a ticket.’ Toby laughed and said, ‘I think I am.’ And then he came out to my house in McAlester and gave me the ticket.”

Harrison was impressed with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife employees. “They handled the situation perfectly and professionally,” Harrison said.

When Harrison’s buddy, Game Warden Fields, told him that he had received an anonymous tip that Terry had shot a piebald, Harrison laughed and said “Anonymous? Really? It was on the front page of the McAlester News-Capital.”

Although Harrison did not intentionally break the law, he believes it is important that he take responsibility for his mistake. “I did not have any criminal intent,” Harrison said. “But I’m not going to downplay this at all. I’m taking responsibility for my actions. I just want others to learn from my mistake so they won’t make the same one.”

Harrison stressed the importance of studying and being up to date on game laws and regulations prior to a hunt — an embarrassing $296 lesson he just learned himself.

These laws and guidelines are accessible online at www.wildlifedepartment.com.

For more on this story, see Thursday's print edition of the McAlester News-Capital.

Contact Rachel Petersen at rpetersen@mcalesternews.com
.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Crash south of Kiowa McAlester trooper saluted

    Trooper Sean Mass of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol’s Troop D, McAlester, has been recognized as a Trooper of the Year by AAA Oklahoma.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Men's Holy Week Breakfast Washington: Jesus forgives is message at Holy Week Breakfast

    All of us can find salvation and forgiveness of our sins, just like one of the thieves who had been crucified next to Jesus on the cross.
    That’s the message the Rev. Anthony Washington, pastor of the Mount Triumph Baptist Church in McAlester, delivered as featured speaker for the third gathering of this year’s Men’s Holy Week breakfast.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mills: 'Nothing personal' in contesting Layden's candidacy

    Pittsburg County Special District Judge Tim Mills says there’s nothing personal in his contesting the candidacy of Bill Layden, who is also a former special district judge in the county.

    April 16, 2014

  • MCALESTER GENERIC 1 McAlester student accepted to Arts Institute

    Brandi Hongell, of McAlester, has been accepted to the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain, an arts academy held in June in southwestern Oklahoma.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cuttin' it close: Karr files for Ward 4 seat, barely beating deadline

    Three minutes.
    Former Ward 4 City Councilor Robert Karr filed his declaration of candidacy for the vacant Ward 4 seat, filled out the papers, got them notarized and back into the  Pittsburg County Election Board office just three minutes before the deadline to do so elapsed at 5 p.m. Wednesday.

    April 16, 2014

  • Honored McAlester grad - Commander Pete Nilsen to speak at Armed Forces Day luncheon

    McAlester High School alumnus Commander Peter K. Nilsen assistant chief of staff, Navy Missile and Defense Command will be the keynote speaker May 2 at the Armed Forces Day Luncheon at the McAlester Army Ammunitions Plant.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Square logo.jpg April and May named Cleanup McAlester Months

    McAlester Mayor Steve Harrison signed a proclamation Tuesday designating the months of April and May as “Cleanup McAlester Month.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • HolyWeek4Wed 1.jpg Gospel: 'The Good News' heard at Holy Week Breakfast

    Steve Glazier presented a pair testimonies of individuals who went on to have a significant impact on others  — a bank robber and a hony-tonk songwriter — when he spoke at the second gathering of this year’s Men’s Holy Week Breakfasts.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • Dogwood Decorations All ladies welcome to luncheon

    The 42nd annual Women’s Holy Week Salad Luncheon is Thursday. The Thursday before Easter is commonly called Maundy Thursday by most Christians.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos 2 Stories

  • Still no filings for Ward 4 city council seat

    What if they called an election and nobody came —no candidates, that is.
    That’s the way things were shaping up late Tuesday afternoon for the vacant Ward 4 seat on the McAlester City Council.

    April 15, 2014

Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Royal Couple Visits Australia Mountains Raw: Pro-Russian Militants Killed on Base Captain of Sunken South Korean Ferry Apologizes Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing Raw: Blast at Tennessee Ammunition Plant Kills 1 Hoax Bomb Raises Anxiety in Boston Egypt Clamps Down on Mosques to Control Message After Fukushima, Japan Eyes Solar Power New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Ex-California City Leader Gets 12 Year Sentence Disbanding Muslim Surveillance Draws Praise Hundreds Missing After South Korean Ferry Sinks Passengers Abuzz After Plane Hits Swarm of Bees Town, Victims Remember Texas Blast At Boston Marathon, a Chance to Finally Finish Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?
NDN Video
Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Florida State Ends Top Of the 5th With Bizarre Play vs Jacksonville | ACC Must See Moment Kate Upton Loves Her Body, Every Part Of It Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN Elizabeth Olsen's Sexy Shoot Bay Area Teen Gets Prom Date With Help From 'Breaking Bad' Star Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Behind The Tanlines Jersey Strong Part 1 WATCH: Women Fight To Marry Prince Harry! Jenny McCarthy Engaged to "New Kid" Kate and Will Land in Oz O’Reilly Launches Preemptive Strike Against CBS Pixar Unveils Easter Eggs From its Biggest Movies Baby Sloths Squeak for Their Cuddle Partners in Adorable Video Miley Cyrus Hospitalized After Severe Reaction To Medicine Raw: Ferry Sinks Off South Korean Coast Toddler climbs into vending machine 8-year-old Boy Gets His Wish: Fly Like Iron Man Much-Anticipated 'Gone Girl' Trailer Finally Debuts! (VIDEO) Dog and Toddler Wear Matching Outfits in Adorable Photo Series
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.