Idaho Statesman thinks Idaho Counties shouldn't be prematurely judged on wolf killing prosecution

Idaho Statesman opines today. Idaho counties deserve chance to do right thing [on wolf killing prosecutions]

This is about the controversy over the failure of the Fremont County prosecutor to prosecute Bruen Cordingley of Ashton. He shot two wolves. He claimed they threatened his horses. No details have released expect that he killed one wolf on his property and went after the other on his snowmobile killing it more than a mile away and not on his property.

The GYC blasted Fremont County, Idaho for not prosecuting the man They GYC said the decision not to file charges demonstrates how local prosecutors could be hesitant to prosecute wolf killings when it could cost them votes in future elections. ‘If they won’t even prosecute a case this blatantly illegal, there is a problem,’ Marv Hoyt, a spokesman for the coalition, told the Post Register.”

Unfortunately Hoyt may have it only party right and the Statesman clearly doesn’t understand Idaho’s new law sneaked through the legislature on the very day of delisting. The problem isn’t Fremont County. The prosecutor could be the biggest fan of wolves in Idaho, but under the new law all someone with animals needs to say is he thought the wolf was molesting his animals, which may consist of nothing more than the man believing the wolf is thinking bad thoughts about his horses, cows, dogs, pet hamsters, etc.

Read the new law. Statesman !!






  1. timz Avatar

    “Read the new law. Statesman !!” Ha ha, just like they read the management plan before the so proudly endorsed it.
    This law really needs to be challenged as too vague.

  2. Brian Ertz Avatar

    i agree Ralph, i don’t necessary think what the man did was blatantly illegal. the law is horrible on this

  3. JB Avatar

    The problem is how do you prove that a wolf was or was not about to attack? Unless there is an eye witness that disputes the claim of the person shooting wolves, it is impossible, and so the law can’t be enforced.

  4. HAL 9000 Avatar
    HAL 9000

    The thing that bothered me the most about the editorial is that they seemed to accept — and perhaps even endorse — the idea of local prosecutors making decisions based upon “accountability to voters.”

    Last time I checked, basing the dispensation of justice upon popular sentiment was a bad idea.


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan