Pro-Golfer Tripp Isenhour Gets a Legal Mulligan on Killing Protected Hawk

Tripp Isenhour may be popular with golfers but he is despised by environmentalists. The golfer is accused of intentionally killing a protected red-shouldered hawk (shown here) on at the Grand Cypress Golf Club because the bird’s chirping was interrupting his filming of an instructional video. Isenhour received a very light sentence of one year probation and 100 hours of community service. He will only have to do 40 hours of service in exchange for a small contribution to a wildlife preserve.

While Isenhour claimed to be merely trying to scare off the bird when he hit a ball at it, others with him contested his account and were upset with his actions, click here. In March, he issued the following statement:

“As soon as this happened, I was mortified and extremely upset and continue to be upset,” Isenhour said in a statement issued through his management company, SFX Golf. “I want to let everyone know there was neither any malice nor deliberate intent whatsoever to hit or harm the hawk. I was trying to simply scare it into flying away.”

The problem is that he took multiple shots and bragged before the killing shot that “I’ll get him now.” Click here. The sentence seems quite light given the opposing testimony of witnesses.

While I am not an advocate of creative sentencing, those 40 hours could be spent on a driving range as a target for golfers — just to give him an insight into his victim’s end.

For the full story, click here.

8 thoughts on “Pro-Golfer Tripp Isenhour Gets a Legal Mulligan on Killing Protected Hawk”

  1. If you people think that any professional golf er in good enough to hiT a hawk then you have no idea. ive Meet tripp personaly and know him well and know there was no harmfull intent in his actions.

  2. Guest:

    The problem with the accident claim is that he added to hitting balls at the bird. He just stated that he was not trying to kill it as opposed to scaring it. There was no claim that he was aiming two inches to the right when the sixth ball kill the bird. The prior balls obviously did not scare off the hawk and he clearly aimed closer or more accurately on the sixth try.

  3. 8 witnesses said it was an accident. 1 said it wasn’t. Don’t believe everything you read in the papers.

  4. rafflaw and mojo,

    Great ideas! And perhaps “shootin’ irons” should not be in a golf game either.

  5. rafflaw –

    That’s a very funny comparison, and quite poignant. To liven up the sport of golf, perhaps there should be a time constraint placed between your last shot and your next shot. If you’re not fast enough to the ball to set up and hit, the defensive line begins their rush …

  6. That is a horrible story. I have never understood why you have to be so quiet in Golf. In baseball you have to hit a pitch at 95mph with thousands screaming and that doesn’t bother them so why can’t a professional golfer hit a stationary ball with a few hundred people makng noise? A Red Tail Hawk can’t make enough noise to distract a golfer. This guy should have received a much tougher sentence.

  7. I’m not much on golfing, but is this what they call a “birdie”?

  8. Target practice would be wonderful–I’m first in line. I can’t believe he was able to buy himself out of community service. He should have to donate and give the max number of hours.

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