THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON STATE POLICE, FISH AND WILDLIFE DIVISION
On April 3, 2016 at about 9:45AM, OSP Troopers received a report of suspicious activity alongside Interstate 84 near milepost 119 (east of Biggs Junction). The reporting party stated it appeared a subject was gutting a big game animal and was concerned it was a bighorn sheep.
OSP Patrol and Fish and Wildlife Troopers responded and located a vehicle in the area occupied by a male later identified as Justin M SAMORA, age 32, of Layton, Utah.
While troopers were speaking with SAMORA, passing motorists stopped and advised there was a male hiding in the brush just west of their location. While troopers were searching for the male, they discovered two severed bighorn sheep heads.
More OSP troopers responded to assist with the search. The other male, identified as Cody J PLAGMANN, age 28, of Troutdale, was found hiding along railroad tracks two miles to the east of the scene around 4PM.
Investigation revealed PLAGMANN and SAMORA had worked together to shoot and remove the heads of the bighorn sheep. Both bighorn sheep were recovered but were not able to be salvaged. PLAGMANN was arrested and lodged at Northern Oregon Regional Correctional Facility in The Dalles for:
Taking/Possession of Bighorn Sheep
Wasting of a Game Animal
Hunting on Another’s Cultivated or Enclosed Land
SAMORA was arrested for Aiding in A Game Violation and lodged at Northern Oregon Regional Correctional Facility in The Dalles.
“It’s an outrage that someone would poach a bighorn sheep, when hunters can wait their whole life and still never get the opportunity to hunt this iconic species,” said Jeremy Thompson, district wildlife biologist in The Dalles. ” This herd is also a popular viewing attraction for people driving along I-84, and has been there since 1993.”
Any persons who may have witnessed the incident or has information is asked to call The Dalles Area Command at 541-296-9646. More information will be released when it becomes available as this is an ongoing investigation.