ATHENS COUNTY, Ohio (WTAP) - An Athens County man has been sentenced on federal charges for unlawfully killing an Osprey.
On Monday, Rick Kesterson, 37, of Glouster, Ohio, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which makes it unlawful to kill any migratory bird.
Kesterson was sentenced to 2 years probation and was ordered to pay $500 in restitution to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
He was also sentenced to forfeit his hunting license, complete 52 hours of community service at Burr Oak State Park, and be subject to random house inspections and drug testing.
According to court documents, in April, 2015, The Ohio DNR Division of Wildlife received a complaint on the Turn In A Poacher Hotline, in which witnesses stated they were watching Ospreys with binoculars when they heard two gunshots and saw an Osprey falling into a pond below.
The witnesses then saw Kesterson use a fishing pole to retrieve the Osprey, then he struck the Osprey with a pipe and carried it down a dirt road into the woods.
Investigators found the Osprey in a creek in the woods at that location.
The next day, investigators searched Kesterson's mother's home, where he lived, and found Kesterson hiding in his bedroom, and arrested him.
Kesterson was charged in January, 2017 and indicted by a federal grand jury in May, 2017.
Kesterson pleaded no contest to the federal charge and was found guilty by U.S. District Court Judge Marbley.