- Associated Press - Thursday, January 2, 2020

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) - Investigators in Wyoming have reported a possible poaching case after someone found a deer without its head wrapped in a black plastic bag.

The carcass was found along Ski Hill Road about 3 miles (5 kilometers) from Alta, Jackson Hole News & Guide reported Tuesday.

Jackson Game Warden Kyle Lash performed a necropsy on the mule deer in December, but it was too decomposed to take any samples for disease testing, Wyoming Game and Fish Department officials said.

It appears the headless deer was there for a few weeks, officials said.

Department public information specialist Mark Gocke believes the animal was shot in the head, but no bullet wound was found, he said.

There is also a chance the animal could have died naturally on someone’s private property, and they decided to keep the head and dispose of the carcass elsewhere, Gocke said.

It is illegal to keep a deer head if the animal dies on your property, authorities said. It must be taken to a landfill without the plastic, Gocke said.

An investigation is ongoing.

Anyone with information is encouraged to call the state wildlife department, authorities said.

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