New Mexico Wildlife

New Mexico Department of Game and Fish

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Last Updated: 06/27/2012

Indictments issued in Antelope Poaching Case

5 pronghorn shot and left to rot

5 Pronghorn Antelope shot and left on the King Ranch

Headless discovered by Game and Fish Investigators
5 Pronghorn Antelope left to rot after the 3 poachers killing spree on the King Ranch


ALBUQUERQUE – A grand jury has indicted two men and a juvenile male from Rio Rancho on several counts in connection with the illegal killing of five pronghorn antelope Feb. 10 on the King Ranch near Zia Pueblo.


Michael Yarbrough, 21, Travis Miller, 18, and a 17-year-old are accused of cutting a fence, illegally trespassing on the ranch and shooting two bucks and three doe antelope. The heads of the bucks were removed and all the carcasses were left in a pile to rot. There was no legal hunt occurring at the time.


The suspects were indicted on several misdemeanor charges, including illegal possession of antelope, unlawful killing of antelope and criminal trespassing. The adults also face fourth-degree felony charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. They face numerous fines, possible jail time and loss of hunting privileges.


The Department of Game and Fish investigation was aided by a concerned sportsman who found the dead antelope and a subsequent tip from Operation Game Thief, the agency’s toll-free poaching reporting line. Based on that information, officers were able to secure a search warrant for a residence in Rio Rancho, which provided evidence needed for the grand jury indictment.

Court hearings on the case are expected to be scheduled soon.


If you have any information about wildlife crimes, please call your local conservation officer or Operation Game Thief at 1-800-432-GAME (4263) or file a secure report now. Callers can remain anonymous and can receive rewards for information leading to the arrest or charges filed upon wildlife criminals.