TPWD News Release — May 9, 2005
AUSTIN, Texas — A six-month long investigation conducted by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Special Operations Wildlife Crimes Unit came to a close during the last few days with Larry Grimland of the Dallas area being charged with 20 counts of illegally trapping wild whitetail deer from his Bosque County ranch.
Grimland was apprehended by TPWD Investigators Sgts. Adam Chrane and Brad Chappell for illegally delivering and selling three whitetail deer in Bosque County. The next morning a search warrant was executed on Grimland’s ranch where records were seized indicating Grimland had sold numerous wild whitetail deer for the last several years, netting thousands of dollars.
In a plea agreement reached, Grimland has agreed to cooperate with investigators, pay $40,000 in fines and make a $40,000 contribution to the Operation Game Thief fund. An additional 45 charges have been filed against 10 individuals that purchased illegal deer from Grimland.
In a spinoff investigation, Bosque County resident David Deeley agreed to pay $10,000 in fines and make a $6,000 contribution to Operation Game Thief fund. Deeley was charged with five counts of illegally trapping wild whitetail deer. Bryan Hanus, a Bosque County deer hauler, was arrested on felony arrest warrants for “felon in possession of a firearm, and tampering with physical evidence,” both 3rd degree felonies. Hanus was placed in the Bosque County jail with bonds set at $10,000 per charge.
The scope of this investigation revealed illegal whitetail deer commerce over a significant portion of Texas and demonstrated the importance of having a centralized investigative group such as TPWD’s Special Operations Unit. The unit received invaluable assistance from game wardens throughout the state in conducting interviews and taking statements.
Bosque County Attorney David Christian prosecuted the cases and Game Wardens Preston Spiller and Mike Sibila provided the initial lead.
Col. Pete Flores said, “This investigation serves as a deterrent to those who engage in the illegal commerce of Texas’ wildlife resources. This case also safeguards the legitimate interests of deer managers and conservation in Texas.”