An investigation into a case of residency fraud has resulted in the conviction of a California man for the unlawful killing of an antelope without a valid tag and the unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Todd Bradley, who lives in Concord, California, unlawfully obtained a Nevada resident hunting license and three Nevada resident big game tags in 2018. He then illegally hunted and killed a pronghorn antelope in Washoe County. Because he obtained both the license and the tag illegally, he was charged with the unlawful killing of an antelope without a valid tag, a Class E Felony. He was additionally charged with two misdemeanor crimes associated with his fraudulently obtained and used Nevada resident hunting license, and two gross misdemeanor charges associated with false information to obtain tags and possession of the unlawfully killed antelope.
“Residency fraud is a real problem,” said Tyler Turnipseed, Chief Game Warden for NDOW. “In Nevada, non-resident big game tags are issued through a lottery drawing at a rate amounting to approximately 10% of the total tag quota. That, combined with the fee difference between resident and non-resident tags, makes for an incentive for unscrupulous applicants to attempt residency fraud for big game tags.”
During the investigation it was determined that Bradley had prior criminal convictions that prohibited him from possessing a firearm, which he was documented to have used during his unlawful antelope hunt, leading to the additional Class B felony charge of unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
California Department of Fish and Wildlife Game Wardens assisted in the investigation recovering multiple firearms and the unlawfully killed Nevada antelope. Since the antelope was in in Bradley’s possession at the time he was contacted and interviewed in California, additional charges were filed in California.
Bradley plead guilty to the two felony counts on May 9 as part of a plea agreement and was sentenced on Friday (July 30) to two consecutive 34 month prison terms in the Nevada Department of Corrections Facility. His Nevada prison sentences were suspended with Bradley being placed on probation for an indefinite period not to exceed 60 months. Bradley’s probation conditions dictate that he is to spend 30 days in the Washoe County Jail beginning on January 4, 2020. Bradley was also ordered to pay a civil penalty of $4,999 plus additional standard administrative fees.
“We had several game wardens put in a considerable amount of time on this case,” said Turnipseed. “Our officers take residency fraud very seriously and I’m proud of the results that came from this investigation.”
Individuals charged with crimes are not convicted until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. To report wildlife crime, sportsmen and members of the public can call the OGT hotline at (800) 992-3030. To learn more about game wardens and wildlife in Nevada visit NDOW at www.ndow.org.