TORRANCE – Thomas P. Romero, age 52, of Pecos, New Mexico was found guilty of unlawful hunting and possession of a turkey. The case originated from an anonymous tip to the Operation Game Thief hotline by a witness who had seen Romero shoot a turkey on Highway 54 north of Corona.

The incident occurred on April 28, 2013 when, according to Romero, he accidentally hit a turkey that was crossing the highway. Romero killed the turkey, tagged it and took it to his home in Pecos. A witness said that he talked to Romero at the scene of the accident but thought it was strange that there was no sign of feathers in the road or damage to Romero’s vehicle. The witness recorded Romero’s license plate number and contacted Game and Fish. Conservation officers interviewed Romero on Jan. 10 and Romero admitted to the crime.

Romero was charged with killing a turkey with a motor vehicle, shooting from a roadway and unlawful possession of the turkey. Romero was fined $379 by a Lincoln County magistrate judge.

The Department is asking anyone with information on poaching to call Operation Game Thief toll-free, (800) 432-GAME (4263), or to visit Callers can remain anonymous and earn rewards if the information leads to charges being filed.