In 2008 William White and his son, Tom intentionally slaughtered at least one and possibly more than one wolf from the Lookout Pack near Methow, WA. The wolves which had naturally migrated to the area were under the full protection of the Endangered Species Act.
In spite of his intentional disrgard for the law as well as a confirmed pattern of poaching wildlife and engaging in illegal means of hunting animals, the court in the case is letting Mr White off with only a minimum fine and no jail time.
White's son, Tom and his daughter in law Erin are still in the process of negotiating a plea deal after having both plead guilty to participating in these crimes.
“Mr. White showed blatant, deliberate and repeated disregard for both game and endangered wildlife and the laws that protect them,” said Mitch Friedman executive director of Conservation Northwest. “Yet under this deal he escapes spending a single night in jail.”
“This weak deal sends the wrong message to other potential poachers that the courts don’t take wildlife abuse seriously. Looking at the example of Bill White, I’m wondering what a poacher would have to do to get to jail.”
Please help send a strong message to the Department of Justice and the Judge presiding over the case of William White and his son Tom and Daughter-in-Law Erin requesting that these plea deals be rejected and that the court impose the maximum sentence available under the law for individuals that willfully slaughter protected animals and also show a consistent and blatent disregard for laws the govern the rights to hunt and fish.
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that the court enforce the maximum penalty available under the law in the cases of William, Tom and Erin White. All parties have plead guilty to multiple violations of Federal law with respect to the illegal slaughter of members of the Federally Protected Lookout Wolf Pack from the Methow Valley in Washington.
Furthermore all the named parties have engaged in a regular and systematic abuse of the laws intended to protect wildlife. These persons have blatantly disregarded laws intended to preserve and protect wildlife for all, and they have done so not only in this instance but in multiple instances that are currently under investigation.
We believe that failure to penalize these individuals with the full force of the relevant law will demonstrate to other would-be poachers that the courts are not inclined to take these actions seriously and the chance that they will receive jail time as part of a sentence is minimal at best.
Only a very small percentage of the public engages in hunting or trapping yet this small group continues to enjoy an excess of rights that have the potential to negatively impact all users of our natural environment. Should the courts fail to discourage people like the Whites from violating the law, encroachment on the enjoyment of our wildlands and the animals that live in them will only increase.