SANTA FE, N.M. — A man who pleaded guilty to stealing a female moose from a wildlife refuge has been sentenced to six months in jail.
Shalom Wildlife Sanctuary in New Mexico pleaded guilty Monday to violating a restraining order placed on John David Cottrell, who was arrested last year after a wildlife rehabilitator discovered the moose and called police.
The sanctuary said Cottrel was guilty of stealing a male moose that belonged to the wildlife rehabilitation facility and is no longer at the sanctuary.
Cottrell was also convicted in a lawsuit filed by a group of former refuge staff that says the refuge ignored the needs of the mooses by not protecting them and letting them roam free.
The sanctuary has agreed to pay $25,000 to the former staff and is also donating the mooshes carcasses to the nonprofit wildlife rehabilitation center.
Carrera, of the Rio Grande Valley, was sentenced to 12 months in the Santa Fe County Jail, and ordered to perform 40 hours of community service.
The jail term is suspended pending his next court appearance.