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Samuel Carter, ex-Boulder cop, found guilty in killing of neighborhood elk

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Additional photos, a video and more below.
Back in January 2013, we told you about the arrest of two Boulder police officers, Samuel Carter and Brent Curnow, on charges related to the shooting and killing of Big Boy, an elk beloved by members of the Mapleton neighborhood. Authorities suspected they bagged the elk as a trophy, then lied about it.

Curnow took a plea deal in the case, but Carter went all the way to trial -- and he has now been found guilty of multiple counts. We've got photos, video, the original arrest report and details of the verdict below.

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Samuel Carter's booking photo.
As we reported, an officer later identified as Carter shot and killed a bull elk in the area of Ninth Avenue and Mapleton Street after 11 p.m. on January 1 of last year. According to the initial Boulder Police news release, Carter was on routine patrol when he saw the elk, which he says appeared to be injured. Some of the elk's antlers had been broken off and it was limping, police said.

"In the officer's judgment, the animal needed to be humanely put down," read the statement. The officer fired one shot from a shotgun, killing the elk, which was in a residential yard. That animal was then "taken home to be processed for meat by another officer [Curnow], who was off-duty at the time."

It didn't take long for this story to unravel. For one thing, neither officer had immediately reported the incident. This news was followed by an image of Carter happily posing with the dead animal, as seen in this Boulder Daily Camera screen capture.

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Next came word that Curnow runs his own taxidermy business -- a revelation that further fueled the anger of residents upset by what had happened and doubtful that the elk had been injured.

The Boulder District Attorney's Office soon launched an investigation to determine if criminal charges against Carter and Curnow were warranted -- and prosecutors ultimately determined that they were. The officers were booked on a mix of felony charges (including forgery, tampering with physical evidence and attempting to influence a public official) and misdemeanors (such as killing an elk out of season and unlawful taking of a trophy elk).

Much of the evidence accumulated against the officers is cataloged in the arrest affidavit issued in Carter's name. Here's one roster of factoids that seem to contradict his earlier claims:

• Carter was on duty that night and had admitted upon questioning that he had shot the elk.

• Carter had not told his sergeant about concerns with an injured or aggressive elk.

• Carter did not contact dispatch when he went to the corner of 9th and Mapleton, where the elk was located, and never mentioned the elk to dispatch.

• Carter did not notify either his supervisor or dispatch that he was about to discharge a firearm, or had just discharged a firearm to kill the elk. He never mentioned the shot or having killed a trophy elk during the rest of his shift.

• Carter spent a prolonged period of time at 9th and Mapleton while loading the elk in Curnow's truck without checking in with dispatch.

• Carter had never attempted to contact CPW (Colorado Parks and Wildlife) on call or local district wildlife managers, officers with biological training to access injuries and aggressive behavior in wildlife, and with tools and capabilities to tranquilize and move large ungulates.

• Carter never asked dispatch or his supervisor to contact the City contracted knacker service to remove the animal, nor did he make any attempt to contact CPW to garner advice about disposition of an elk with trophy antlers.

• After clearing the scene Carter contacted his supervisor by phone and requested to go home sick. During this conversation killing of the elk was never mentioned.

Even more damning were text messages between Carter, Curnow and a third law enforcer, beginning shortly after midnight on New Year's Day.

Continue for more the conviction of Samuel Carter in the shooting of the Mapleton elk, including photos, video and the arrest affidavit.



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48 comments
Becky Knowles
Becky Knowles

Yes I think justice was done and no I am not surprised at the attention. I think the elk's name was Big Boy.

christopher168
christopher168

What's compelling is how did Sam Carter come to believe that he could exercise such degree of indiscretion and not be held accountable for his actions? Was it because he felt his badge would protect him, that the courts wouldn't dare go after him, that the public would just shrug or because as a police officer he had come to believe he was above the law even if his job was to help enforce the law in the most honorable terms....


http://scallywagandvagabond.com/2014/06/sam-carter-ex-boulder-colorado-cop-lands-6-years-jail-for-killing-prized-elk/

Ray Moore
Ray Moore

The guy should be in trouble... It's called poaching. But this nonsense comparing an animal to a person is hilarious. You animal rights dipshits should all go eat a piece of beef jerky and shut the hell up for once.

Sher Quintana
Sher Quintana

They are criminals.. liers..who knew exactly what they were doing..calculated and proud of it..it is gross and discusting..they are not fit to own a firearm..or work for any law enforcement..broke so many laws...and in the laws of the Universe..Karma is a BITCH!

Joe Ponce de Carrano
Joe Ponce de Carrano

Elk Gate: Boulder gives more human rights to an Elk than a war criminal president murdering children with drones in another country. National Socialist Republic of Boulder. The American conscience is an enigma.

John Zinn
John Zinn

He deserves it. Trust me you don't won't folks shooting animals, pets, people, etc indiscriminately.

Shaina Paz
Shaina Paz

No, I don't eat dogs. I do like elk and venison but there was no need for the cop to shoot that elk, just like there is no need to shoot a dog when they're on their property not harming anyone. Was trying to bring a little humor to this fucked up situation, everything is so serious and NEGATIVE!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

It's truly a glorious day when a lowlife scumbag cop gets convicted of multiple felonies ...


... even better when they are actually sent to prison -- for TWICE the time any ordinary citizen would have received for the same crime.



Jessica Hazel
Jessica Hazel

Oh I don't know... I see a ton of posts on here and other sites about all the shit these pigs are doing. People are standing up... and they're being silenced just as quickly. But they can only silence us so long before something breaks...

Jessica Hazel
Jessica Hazel

Fucking pigs... I am so tired of all of these fucking pigs being so gun happy on animals and humans alike. They all need to be held accountable. It makes me sick that my tax dollars go to these pieces of shit, worthless human beings.

PoliticalFreaks
PoliticalFreaks

Since the 1970"s, research has consistently reported childhood cruelty to animals as the first warning sign of later delinquency, violence, and criminal behavior.  In fact, nearly all violent crime perpetrators have a history of animal cruelty in their profiles.  Albert deSalvo, the Boston Strangler found guilty of killing 13 women, shot arrows through dogs and cats he trapped as a child.  Columbine shooters Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold boasted about mutilating animals for fun.

George White
George White

Looks like Sam is gonna be someone's "trophy elk" behind bars. Lol.

Chuck Schmidt
Chuck Schmidt

Glad that being stupid wasn't allowed as a defense. I hope he gets the maximum penalty whatever that is.

Mike Lawrence
Mike Lawrence

Just because you have a badge you can't go around doing whatever you want using scare tactics preaching safety and abusing your power, we must change the way we hire our law enforcement starting with a collage education and a degree in human psychology...

Tommy Shackelford
Tommy Shackelford

Not like anyone didn't know he did it- just wasn't man enough to step up and admit he did it for sport reasons only and lied about elk being injured.

Chris Lewis
Chris Lewis

Now if we could focus that attention for when these pigs kill human beings.

D.j. Valdez
D.j. Valdez

What a fucking asshole. Go back to Arkansas you hick bastard.

Bradford Ashington
Bradford Ashington

for an animal, likely, because of all of the faux social media and internet outrage.......if this was another human being (especially if it was a homeless person), then no one other than the most hardened of anti-law enforcement activists would give two shits, even bashing the victim for good measure

Bradford Ashington
Bradford Ashington

well, consider that in American society in general, people place more value in their pets and inanimate playthings (guns) over their own children and fellow man. Murkah

Scott McMahon
Scott McMahon

Maybe not if the cop took a picture of himself holding up the person's head. I hear ya though

Josh Weakland
Josh Weakland

Cops were wrong...should and did lose jobs...(voluntary) But a candlelight vigil for the elk? Ha r u kidding me???!!!!!! ... Boulder is hilarious.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

"In the officer's judgment, ..." -- question officers' judgment!

Vincent Lee Gagliardi
Vincent Lee Gagliardi

It's a shame that cops kill people everyday and aren't charged with anything.

Dawn Lopez
Dawn Lopez

I hope this is the last time I see this photo. Sad

Lori Cotton
Lori Cotton

:) I live in that neighborhood and he hung out with us for years. Strange I know, but we loved his presence (even though he could wreak havoc on a lawn). I can't say this for a fact, but a couple neighbors claim that they started seeing him right after the big fires in the mountains west of us. Regardless, he proved himself to be a gentle giant that we respected and tried to live in harmony with. It was always a thrill to see him and it was cool that he was happy living amongst us.

Matthew Munn
Matthew Munn

The sad part: if it'd been in Denver, and a person rather than an elk, there'd have been no trial for what would have been no doubt a "justifiable shooting".

Aj Jensen
Aj Jensen

He's such a dumb-ass. He had a great job, great pay. I'm sure his spouse was ready to shoot him.

Preston Eugne Powell
Preston Eugne Powell

Police are supposed to uphold the law. I think if they break it guilty or not should be put on un paid leave. And if found guilty fired on the spot with all his or hers benefits ripped away and they should do their jail or prison time in population with the rest of the supposed criminals.

Shaina Paz
Shaina Paz

What a waste of meat! Fucking pigs, think they can go around shooting elk and dogs like they own everything.

John Mccall
John Mccall

This schmuck is guilty as sin. Killing an elk for fun? Jail for this asshole.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Mike Lawrence "we must change the way we hire our law enforcement starting with a collage [sic] education" 


College Fail!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... the sycophantic U$A needs to stop Glorifying them as automatic Heroes.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... you think a Neanderthal goon like that has a spouse?



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