Virginia man pleads guilty to killing bald eagle for hunting for fish in his pond

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In Norfolk, Virginia, a local resident pleaded guilty to killing a bald eagle by shooting it and then running it over with his all-terrain vehicle. On Tuesday, Allen Thacker, 62, admitted  to the unlawful taking of a bald eagle, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Originally Thacker tried to scare the bird away with a warning shot, but when the bird refused to leave, Thacker wounded the eagle shooting at him with a .22 caliber rifle. He then told authorities he used a pistol to “finish the bird off.”  A witness reports when the eagle landed after it was shot, Thacker ran over the bird with his all terrain vehicle – although when originally questioned by authorities, he denied it, AbcNews reports. The witness reported Thacker drove in a circle and ran over the eagle at least three to four times before he dragged it into the woods.

The necropsy of the eagle determined it died from blunt force trauma. The .22 rifle did wound the bird, however there was no evidence of any pistol shots. The eagle apparently died a torturous death as Thacker repeatedly ran over it with his ATV.

In an interview with agents from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, (USFWS) Thacker stated that “too much emphasis is placed on bald eagle protection because the birds are a menace.” He shot the bird because he was angry that it had been hunting and taking fish from the pond on his property.

The USFWS seized the firearms used to kill the eagle. Thacker will be sentenced on October 23 and could have faced a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine. A plea agreement has been worked out between the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Thacker’s attorney. Instead he will forfeit all assets involved in the offense, including the .22 caliber rifle. Since Thacker jointly owns the Yamaha Big Bear all-terrain with his sister, he has agreed to forfeit a sum of $960.

(Photo of bald eagle Pixabay)

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23 replies
  1. Adrienne says:

    He should have also been given volunteer work in a bird/eagle sanctuary to see how these birds really are. I am sure he would feel more than remorse for what he did to this animal.

  2. maxiemom says:

    He should have had to pay every bit of that $100,000. Killing that bald eagle is the same as s******g on this country’s flag, which is funny because I will guarantee you that this POS is a card carrying NRA member and filthy trumper as well. They scream about flag burning, but scum like this often sees nothing wrong with desecrating our other national symbols, especially if they BREATHE.

    I wish this bastard had been sentenced under VIRGINIA’S statutes, not the feds. That’s how Michael Vick got off, and that’s how this vermin is getting away with this. With luck, he’ll go to jail. If this were a state matter, he would. I’m not so certain about what will happen in federal court, especially since his fine was reduced…..

  3. Ilona Brost says:

    The guy kills sadisticly protected by the law animal and pays $960? Well, plus the gun and the truck… We wonder why people throw away the dog, cats. starve horses, shoot neighbour’s annoying pets? Because they can since the Law allows.
    Now imaging this guy driving over panda back and forse till dead… in China. They probably would cut his scull open and eat his brain while he is still alive with chopsticks. And this is not my sick invention – except I haven’t heard of them doing it to people. But I am pretty sure the guy would get capital punishment.

  4. Dana Ufkes says:

    No, stick to the original penalty, 1 year in prison and $100,000 fine. These monsters that loose their temper and torture innocent animals for doing what comes naturally to them like, hunting for fish is absolutely unacceptable and disgraceful. Hey Thacker, may bad karma come your way everyday of your life for torturing and murdering a innocent animal!

  5. Julie Enos says:

    So the usual sentence in this world anymore. So he got off with a warning a slap on the wrist. So what if the Eagle was taking some fish that is no reason to mow the bird down. Perhaps this father or mother had children to feed. What are the birds supposed to eat. So they took his rifle and the ATV valued at some 900 dollars, big whoop. What am I missing here? Please someone explain it to me. How we live in a country where torturing any animal period is acceptable? People just take out their anger on animals. He ran over it because he was angry. Really?

  6. Barbara Garabedian says:

    You are a ugly creepy murder I pray someone kills you for what you did u deserve to die & you will be punished poor eagle what kind of sick ugly creep ???? you are you will get in return what you did to a poor innocent eagle ???? what comes around goes around bg

  7. Marsha Flynn Squibb says:

    What!!!!!!!Our national symbol!!!!This fucken redneck gets off too easy…Throw this piece of shit away forever!!!!!!

  8. Dee pruitt says:

    Another slap on the wrist so this bastard can hurt torture and murder another innocent animal ! A FEDERALLY PROTECTED BIRD ! AND HE GETS AWAY WITH IT !!! DISGUSTING !

  9. Barkley's Mom says:

    Wow! I hope this sentence doesn’t hurt this POS too much (sarcasm)! Took his rifle and pays $960 fine, is that all an American Bald Eagle is worth these days? He should have gotten AT LEAST the 1 year in prison and the $100,000 fine. The despicable inhumane way he killed this bird deserves a harsher sentence, like shooting him and driving in a circle, running over him at least three to four times before dragging his worthless carcass into the woods.

  10. Pamela Bolton says:

    Oh yeah. That will teach him a lesson. Take his gun and his scooter and he will learn respect for wildlife. This justice system sucks. DAMN the plea deals. He went out of his way to kill that Eagle. 5 years in jail would be a good start.

  11. John says:

    This Stupid Person is mighty Stupid for Killing this Bald Eagle. Sure Glad He Pleaded Guilty. Now let Him stay in Jail. He might Learn Something Maybe,.

  12. Nancy Raymond says:

    I for one am sick to death of these aholes who are allowed to plea down for killing ANY animal – the bald eagle is a protected species and deserves to get some serious justice – and of course, this Thacker skank was given the usual slap on the hand for killing this majestic creature for hunting on this idiot’s property. His ass should be sitting in prison but apparently the word ‘protected’ means nothing to some brain dead judge who did not even have the gonads to fine this maggot for the amount of $100,000.00 – again, our judicial system proves its incompetence.

  13. Red says:

    This monster is a worthless use of skin. This was no punishment at all and he will do it again…….he will just be more careful so he won’t be seen.

  14. Jill kurth says:

    How horrible to do what this vicious . Evil. Bastard did to this beautiful bird! He most certainly should have paid $100,000 and a year in jail…..that $100,000 would have cut out his life style and showed him there is no messing around with endangered species! Way too lenient…….for that POS……..

  15. JB Smith says:

    Please help the victims of the National Institute of Justice’s “intelligent surveillance” research. The NIJ is using our taxpayer dollars to violate our constitutional rights, recklessly endanger our lives, and torture us 24/7. Senator Kaine told me that this program funds Newport News Police Department and Virginia state police. Both are required to have a signed informed consent form for each human subject. The NIJ follows the common rule. Citizens need to request the name and contact number for the IRB as well as the grant administrator. We need to ask our senators to defund the NIJ for failure to follow the “common rule” and for violations of our constitutional rights as well as the torture and murder of thousands of innocent citizens. The perps are state and local police. The funding is the NIJ. In addition, cops steal the identity of the victim and use Medicaid to supplement their nonconsensual human subject research. This is a felony. They must allow us to opt out. The NIJ are required by law to pay for our attorney fees, medical expenses, and any change in financial position as well as punitive damages! I now have cancer throughout my body as a direct result of this technology. The NIJ, Newport News Police and Virginia state police are to blame for my cancer and stealing a decade of my life along with Yan Byalik, 105 Beacon Way, Newport News, VA 23606 their IT guy! He keeps his twins on leashes. Are there any attorneys with integrity in the U. S.?


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