Public helps squeeze confession, guilty plea out of poachers   Buckrail - Jackson Hole, news
Mule deer poached by Rocky Lamascolo. (WGFD)

WYOMING – A Gillette couple will pay close to $10,000 in fines and restitution for the illegal taking of a buck mule deer during the fall of 2017.

On June 1, 2018, Rocky Lamascolo pleaded guilty and was sentenced in Campbell County Circuit Court to the illegal take of a buck mule deer without a license and during a closed season. He was ordered to pay a $5,055 fine, $4,000 in restitution and his .270-caliber rifle and scope used during the commission of the crime were forfeited. His privilege to hunt in Wyoming, and the 47 other Wildlife Violator Compact member states, was suspended until June 2, 2021.

This case began with an anonymous tip to South Gillette Game Warden Dustin Kirsch on Nov. 10, 2017 suggesting Rocky Lamascolo of Gillette had illegally killed a large buck mule deer without a license in a closed area. The investigation by Kirsch revealed the 6-by-8 non-typical mule deer was killed in northern Campbell County on Nov. 8—some 19 days after the season had closed.

Lamascolo solicited the help of his wife Sarah, who unlawfully purchased a resident general deer license on Nov. 8 to help cover the illegal take of the deer.

Though Lamascolo initially claimed he killed the deer near Sundance, with the help of fellow wardens and two concerned citizens who provided photographs and video, Kirsch was able to ascertain the deer was alive on Nov. 4 along the Bitter Creek Road in Campbell County.

“Information provided in the initial report and the willingness of concerned citizens to step up and provide crucial evidence, were key to apprehending Mr. Lamascolo,” Kirsch said.

Sarah Lamascolo pleaded guilty to making a false statement to purchase a resident Wyoming deer license and was ordered to pay a fine of $805 and lost her privilege to hunt in Wyoming and the Wildlife Violator Compact member states for one year.