Information sought on killing of pregnant mule deer near Saguaro Lake

MESA — Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Operation Game Thief program is offering up to a $1000 reward for information leading to an arrest in connection with the possible poaching of a mule deer doe.

On the evening of July 10, Maricopa County deputies received reports of shots fired, and found the dead deer in a wash north of the Butcher Jones Recreation Area of Saguaro Lake. The doe was pregnant and nearly full term.

“We hope the public will come forward with information regarding this incident,” Game and Fish Wildlife Manager Laura Orscheln said. “Losing a pregnant doe that was nearly full term equates to the loss of two deer from the population, not just one. It is a loss to wildlife enthusiasts across Arizona.”

The Department relies on the citizens of Arizona to assist in the reduction of wildlife violations. If you have any information or knowledge of this incident, please call the Department’s Operation Game Thief Hotline toll-free at 1-800-352-0700 or use the online form. Callers should reference case number 17-002615.

Callers will remain confidential and can remain anonymous if desired. A reward of up to $500 is being offered in this case for information leading to the arrest of the violator(s).

Each year, the Department pays cash rewards to individuals who report wildlife crimes in Arizona. Money for rewards comes from criminal poaching fines, civil restitution by violators who commit wildlife crimes, and donations.