April 19, 2012
When you hear someone's been arrested in some sort of undercover sting, your mind automatically goes to some particularly heinous crime, right?
Maybe drugs, illegal firearms or prostitution spring to mind. For one former Tennessee sheriff's deputy, it's far, far worse: jerky.
That's right, former Warren County deputy turned bail bondsman Josh King faces charges of illegally selling wildlife after Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency officers spotted King's advertising the goods on Facebook.
Agents then organized an undercover buy, catching King with a bag of whitetail jerky in hand.
It sounds silly, but there's a method to the madness. The USDA does not manage wildlife products such as deer jerky the same way it does other products, like ground beef. Even if it was legal, whitetail populations would fall drastically, said TWRA Officer Dan Hicks, who added the practice isn't exactly uncommon, as people have tried to sell turtles and snakes, and even black bear parts, which are considered an aphrodisiac in parts of Asia.
King is being charged with a Class A misdemeanor. If he's found guilty, he could face up to a year behind bars and a fine up to $2,500.