By Samuel Wilson
A Bigfork man charged with three counts of grizzly bear poaching in May 2014 is scheduled to appear Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Missoula.
Dan Calvert Wallen’s alleged bear-shooting spree occurred May 27 when his neighbor discovered the first bear near his residence. The bear was injured and the neighbor shot and killed it.
A second dead bear was located in the same area the next day by a Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks biologist while he was setting traps for any other grizzly bears in the area.
The third bear was found about one week later when a second neighbor located the decomposing carcass east of Wallen’s residence.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office alleges Wallen shot all three bears within minutes of each other, according to the charges filed Dec. 23.
Each count of unlawful taking of a threatened species carries a maximum penalty of six months in prison and a $25,000 fine.