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Indiana environmental justice: Save a deer. Go to jail.

- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 29, 2013

An Indiana couple faces jail time for nursing a near-dead deer back to health, in apparent violation of the state's Department of Natural Resources rules for returning wild animals to the forest.

The couple — Jeff Counceller, a police officer, and his wife, Jennifer — found the deer in 2010 on a porch, curled into a ball, with maggot-filled puncture wounds, the Associated Press reported. The two cared for the animal on their 17-acre Connersville home, according to the Associated Press.

State conservation officers recently visited the home and discovered the deer, according to ABC News. The couple was subsequently charged with illegal possession of a deer.

The crime's a misdemeanor in Indiana, but carries a jail sentence of up to 60 days and $2,000 in fines, according to the ABC report.

"No matter what the law is, we did what was right for the animal," Mr. Counceller said, to ABC.

Indiana's DNR refused to comment on the pending litigation. A court hearing could go forth next month, according to ABC.

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