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No punishment sought for DNR officer in restaurant deer case

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The conservation officer who delivered a deer carcass to employees at La Charreada last month will not be disciplined for his actions, the officer's supervisor at the Department of Natural Resources said.

Officer Ken Spence delivered a road kill deer to an employee at La Charreada on the afternoon of Oct. 24, according to Board of Health records. After health inspectors received a complaint about employees butchering the bloody carcass on the floor of the restaurant's kitchen, they showed up for an inspection and ordered the restaurant to close its doors for two days while employees discarded all food that could have come into contact with the carcass and thoroughly cleaned the kitchen.

Lt. Kent Hutchins, who is in charge of the DNR's post at the Lieber State Recreation Area, said he conducted an informal investigation because of the media attention and "local concern" about the deer carcass at La Charreada.

However, since he has received no formal misconduct complaints, he said he did not discipline Spence, a 28-year veteran of the DNA's law enforcement wing.

Currently the DNR has no guidelines for giving away deer killed on Indiana roadways, said Capt. Michael Portteus with the DNR.

"Keeping the deer from going to waste and getting it off the road is the primary objective," he said.

Conservation officers have the authority to issue a permit for road kill deer to private citizens, he added.

The employee who received the deer at La Charreada, 1360 Indianapolis Road, has since been fired, along with three other employees who were involved in the incident and the store manager, according to district manager Juan Valery who talked to the BannerGraphic earlier this month.

Sales at the restaurant have fallen off at least 65 percent since the incident, he added.

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I know the DNR officer personally. He would NEVER do something that was illegal, underhanded, unsanitary, or in any way harmful to any person. In fact, he is a bit obsessive about cleanliness, order and upholding the law...God's law and Man's law.

As for the restaurant, I wouldn't worry about it's healthy environment. BUT if you happen to know the person(s) that was/were butchering a deer on the floor...I wouldn't eat at their house.

-- Posted by 06purple18 on Tue, Nov 20, 2007, at 10:34 AM

You will not find a better DNR officer, or for that fact; a better person than officer Spence. I'm sure that the oversight of someone else has just reflected bad upon this officer.

-- Posted by 06purple18 on Tue, Nov 20, 2007, at 7:11 PM

I would definately agree with the article and 06purple18. Officer Spence has done no wrong. He is a great person and great officer. He does his job properly and would not have maliciously given the deer to the restraunt knowing they were going to butcher it in the kitchen. So thank this man. Keep up the good work Ken.

-- Posted by concerned3 on Wed, Nov 21, 2007, at 8:12 PM


-- Posted by Michele1953 on Thu, Nov 22, 2007, at 7:12 PM

Here is a clear example of the "DOUBLE STANDARD".Punish some that were involved, but not the "richest"!. If this DNR person was so obsessive about cleanliness, he would have disposed of the animal in a humane way- NOT HELP DELIVER it to a public restuarant. His record is clean...only because he had not been caught those 28 years. Everyone get's caught eventually!!

-- Posted by fourhorses on Tue, Nov 27, 2007, at 2:58 AM

Ahhhhhh!! I suggest the next time you see a dead deer on the side of the road, take your shovel, dig a hole large enough to bury the animal. You people have no respect for what these people do for the community. You deserve the worst.

-- Posted by concerned3 on Tue, Nov 27, 2007, at 11:39 PM

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