Texas businessman Jeff Hawn has pleaded guilty in one of the largest illegal slaughters of bison in decades. Hawn, who is the CEO of Seattle-based software company Attachmate, admitted that he allowed hunters on his land to shoot 32 bison belonging to his neighbor. He will be sentenced appropriately enough in Fairplay, Colorado.
Hawn agreed to pay $83,000 to the bison’s owner, $70,000 to charities and $4,000 to the Park County Sheriff’s Department. He could face 10 days in jail at his sentencing in January. His plea to lesser charges allowed him to allow trial on 32 counts of aggravated animal cruelty. Hahn said that he let the hunters slaughter the animals after they wandered on to his property and caused property damage.
The plea seems a bit light for a guy who knowingly slaughtered dozens of animals belonging to his neighbor. If he had stolen the animals rather than shot them, he would be facing ten years or more. The lesson of Fairplay seems to be that 32 dead bison are better than one live bison.
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