COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo (CBS4) – Colorado Parks and Wildlife posted a video to social media on Sunday of two officers destroying a convicted poacher’s weapons. In the video, CPW officers Tim Kroening and Philip Gurule say they also crushed Iniki Vike Kapu’s truck.
Kapu was accused by Colorado Parks and Wildlife of illegally killing 12 deer, two turkeys and a bighorn sheep ram in Teller, Fremont and Chaffee counties.
Kapu, 27, entered a plea on Dec. 16, 2019, in Teller County court. The Chaffee County case wrapped up May 22, 2019, when Kapu pleaded guilty to illegal possession of wildlife and was fined $900.
On, Feb. 3, Kapu pleaded guilty to illegal possession of a bighorn sheep and illegal possession of three or more big game animals in Fremont County.
He was sentenced Feb. 11 in Fremont County. As part of the plea agreement for the cases in Fremont and Teller counties, Kapu was fined $4,600, sentenced to six months in jail and three years of supervised probation. While awaiting trial, he spent 111 days in jail in which he received credit toward his sentence.
The plea agreements end an investigation by CPW officers which began with a tip from a citizen about illegal killing of wildlife in October 2018. It was linked to a red truck found abandoned on a remote road in the Pike National Forest. A doe carcass was found in the back.
“It had not been properly processed after it was killed with a bow and arrow, causing its meat to spoil,” CPW stated in a news release from February.
Further investigation revealed the license plates were stolen, and there was no carcass tag on the body. Officers later found a Colorado fishing license inside the truck belonging to Kapu.
After searching their database, they learned Kapu did not have a hunting license, meaning the deer was poached.
A rancher told officers he recognized the truck as belonging to a man and woman who were camping in a trailer. Officers learned the man was Kapu.
“At the campsite, officers found evidence of poaching including deer hair, a turkey head, burned arrows, knives with blood and deer hair on them and rubber gloves with trace evidence.”
When asked about the potential for recouping money by reselling the items used in the poaching, CPW’s Bill Vogrin told CBS4 they are “tainted at that point,” are not suitable for resale, and are instead “decommissioned.”
Tips about crimes against wildlife can be reported anonymously to 1-877-COLO-OGT or emailed CPW at email@example.com.