30 January 2005 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California charged Tyler Scott Bower, of Crescent City, California, with unlawfully taking a protected marine mammal. “Taking” a protected animal includes harassing, hunting, capturing, or killing the animal.
According to the information and a declaration in support of a summons, on or around December 9, 2004, Mr. Bower, 19, is alleged to have knowingly shot a California Sea Lion, Zalophus californianus, with an arrow. According to the declaration, the sea lion was lying on a dock behind the Chart House Restaurant in Crescent City when Bower shot it with a compound bow from approximately twenty yards away.
The sea lion was later seen on the I Dock in Crescent City with an arrow protruding from its abdomen. Local, state, and federal authorities were unsuccessful in their attempts to capture and rescue the sea lion. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) offered a $2,500 reward for any information leading to the conviction of the individual responsible for shooting the sea lion. An anonymous tip led authorities to Mr. Bower.
The United States has filed a request for Mr. Bower to be summoned to appear in federal court on February 15, 2005, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James.
The maximum statutory penalty for the unlawful taking of a protected marine mammals is one year in prison and a fine of $20,000. However, any sentence following conviction would take the Federal Sentencing Guidelines into consideration and would be imposed at the discretion of the court. An information only contains allegations against an individual and, as with all defendants, Mr. Bower must be presumed innocent unless and until convicted.
The prosecution is the result of a six week investigation by National Marine Fisheries Special Agents Tim Broadman and David Reilly as well as California Department of Fish and Game Warden Paul Weldon. Denee A. DiLuigi is the Special Assistant U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release and related court filings may be found on the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s website at www.usdoj.gov/usao/can . Related court documents and information may be found on the U.S. District Court website at www.cand.uscourts.gov or on .
All press inquiries to the U.S. Attorney’s Office should be directed to Luke Macaulay at (415) 436-6757 or by email at Luke.Macaulay3@usdoj.gov .