Jail for a poacher

  A Utah construction worker who killed a large, photogenic elk along a major road through Yellowstone National Park in the fall of 1993 and pleaded guilty to the crime will serve four months in prison and pay $30,000 in fines. But the rank act of poaching the elk was not what led Chad S. Beus, 24, of Salt Lake City, to jail. Rather, it was his attempt to pay a witness $5,000 not to testify before a federal grand jury. During an appearance before U.S. District Judge Alan B. Johnson in Cheyenne, Wyo., April 3, Beus apologized for poaching the seven-by-eight point bull elk. After shooting the animal that had drawn sightseers and photographers to Elk Park, Beus hacked its trophy antlers off and drove away. He later took the rack to a Utah taxidermist to have it mounted. But the taxidermist recognized the poached animal from a photograph in Bugle, the publication of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and alerted authorities. DNA tests proved the antlers Beus wanted mounted came from the park elk. - Michael Milstein

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