Indiana Man Charged With Illegal Harvest of Trophy Deer

Chris Young
Indiana Man Charged With Illegal Harvest of Trophy Deer
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois Conservation Police have charged an Indiana man with illegally killing three deer – two trophy bucks and a doe – in Illinois. The man is also accused with providing false information when he improperly tagged and reported the animals.

Following an anonymous poaching complaint, Illinois Conservation Police officers (CPOs) determined that Benjamin Hiskes of Crown Point, Indiana shot an 11-point buck with a compound bow in southern Cook County, Illinois on Oct. 13 without having purchased an Illinois non-resident either-sex archery deer hunting permit. Illinois CPOs further determined that Hiskes transported the deer to Indiana and tagged it using his Indiana Deer Reduction Zone license.

In Indiana, hunters using a Deer Reduction Zone license in a Deer Reduction Zone must take an antlerless deer prior to taking an antlered deer.  Illinois CPOs allege that Hiskes falsely reported taking a doe in Indiana in order to use the Deer Reduction Zone antlered tag for the 11-point buck. 

Illinois non-resident antlerless-only archery deer permits cost $25.00 and non-resident either-sex combination archery deer permits cost $411.00. With assistance from Indiana Department of Natural Resources officers it was determined that on October 17, 2015 Hiskes took the Illinois deer to a taxidermist in Griffith, Indiana.  Having the Indiana tag attached to the deer gave it the appearance it was taken legally.

Hiskes also is charged with taking the following deer illegally:

• In 2011, Hiskes is alleged to have shot a white-tailed doe in Cook County, Illinois, using a relative’s Illinois resident antlerless-only archery deer permit to check in the doe. 
• In 2012, Hiskes is alleged to have shot a 9-point white-tailed deer in Cook County, Illinois, using a relative’s resident either-sex deer permit to check in that deer. 

Hiskes is facing the following charges in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois: two counts of unlawfully providing false information to the Illinois DNR electronic harvest reporting system (Class A Misdemeanors); two counts of unlawfully using an Illinois deer permit issued to another person while deer hunting (Class A Misdemeanor); two counts of unlawful take of white-tailed deer without a permit (Class B Misdemeanor); one count of failing to tag deer immediately upon kill and before the deer is moved (Class B Misdemeanor).

On October 26, 2015, the 11 point and 9 point deer, along with Hiskes compound bow were seized in Indiana. (A photo is included below).
Illinois non-resident combination archery permits cost $411.00. Non-resident antlerless-only permits were $25.00. Effective October 20, 2015 non-residents are no longer allowed to purchase a single antlerless-only archery deer permit. 

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources Office of Law Enforcement developed the "Target Illinois Poachers" program to encourage any concerned citizen who witnesses a conservation offense to report the violation.  Citizens who want to report violations can call the toll-free telephone number, 1-877-2DNRLAW (1-877-236-7529) or can report the violation by e-mail by going to the following link: (Please note: Information reported by e-mail will only be read on regular business days. On-going violations requiring immediate responses should be phoned in. All reports are confidential and are forwarded to an Illinois Conservation Police Officer for investigation.
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