Trophy State of Mind Host a Poacher
Matthew Alwine, host of the cable TV hunting show “Trophy State of Mind”, was convicted and sentenced Wednesday for hunting violations which occurred on private property in the Crazy Mountains east of Clyde Park from 2010 to 2014.
Alwine pled guilty in Park County Justice Court to five counts of failing to obtain landowner permission while hunting game animals, one count of unlawful possession of a trophy white-tailed deer, and one count of unlawful possession of a bull elk.
The judge imposed $11,180 in fines, restitution and court costs, and revoked Alwine’s hunting, fishing and trapping privileges for 48 months. Alwine also had to forfeit all the animal parts that were seized during the investigation which included five elk and three deer.
The yearlong investigation all began with an anonymous tip. It was discovered that Alwine, of Chewelah, WA, had been hunting for years on private property in the Crazy Mountains without landowners’ permission. Some of the illegal hunts were featured on “Trophy State of Mind” and other videos Alwine produced.
As part of the investigation, in March of 2015 Regional Investigator Chad Murphy and Livingston area Game Warden Drew Scott traveled to Spokane and worked with the Washington Department of Fish & Game. They interviewed Alwine and collected evidence of the wildlife crimes including antlers, mounts, and capes.
Murphy said, “Warden Scott did an excellent job in the investigation in identifying animals Alwine and his associates had killed over the years. He worked with his local landowners and ranch managers to locate the kill sites.”
Other suspects charged in the investigation include Dalton Harum and Zach Samek (both from Washington). Harum was fined $170 for failing to obtain landowner permission and forfeited a set of elk antlers from an elk he killed in 2014. Samek was fined $185 for criminal trespassing.
Matthew Alwine also pled guilty on Sept. 2 in Missoula County Justice Court to unlawfully obtaining Montana resident hunting licenses in 2014. He was fined $1,035.
Murphy said, “Greed and ego are generally the driving forces behind those that commit multiple wildlife violations. That was especially evident in this case with Alwine boasting about his kills within the same day on his social media sites.”
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks extends a special thank you to the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife for its assistance with this case and also to the Park and Missoula County Attorney’s offices for their work in prosecuting this case.