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Lino Lakes man sentenced in shooting of 2 protected birds

Connor Walsh, 25. Photo: Anoka County
Connor Walsh, 25.

Updated: July 17, 2019 09:41 PM

A Lino Lakes man has been sentenced to jail Wednesday after he pleaded guilty to killing two protected trumpeter swans. 

Anoka County prosecutors said 25-year-old Connor Walsh has been convicted on two misdemeanor charges; one for hunting protected birds, and the other for hunting small game without a license. Walsh was sentenced to serve 90 days in jail, with 81 days stayed. The court is giving Walsh credit for nine days served. He will also be placed on one year of supervised probation.

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According to court documents, Walsh will also have to pay a $200 fine, $88 in fees and $1,000 restitution to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. He must also forfeit his shotgun. 

According to a criminal complaint, DNR officers were informed of an individual hunting on Rice Lake in Lino Lakes at about 9:26 a.m. on Sept. 28, 2018.

RELATED: Anoka County man charged with killing trumpeter swans

DNR officers then responded to the northwest shore of the lake. The complaint states the officers saw a trumpeter swan swimming, and following behind it was a man in a kayak, later identified as Connor Benjamin Walsh, 24.

The complaint states Walsh was then seen raising a long gun and firing at the trumpeter swan, which dropped over in the water and was then grabbed by Walsh.

Conservation officers confronted him as he was paddling on the lake and found two trumpeter swans and a 12-gauge shotgun. Officers also learned Walsh didn't have a hunting license, life jacket, waterfowl stamps required for hunting waterfowl or a current driver's license, the complaint states.

According to the complaint, Walsh told officers he thought the swans were snow geese, but admitted to killing them.

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