Former Host of Cable Hunting Show Pleads Guilty to Poaching Deer
PEORIA, Ill. – Christopher Brackett, 41, of East Peoria, Ill., former host of “Fear No Evil,” a hunting show that aired on the Outdoor Channel, pleaded guilty today in federal court to unlawful transportation of wildlife, in violation of the Lacey Act. Brackett admitted that in December 2013, during filming of an episode of his cable show, he killed two bucks within minutes of each other, when the state of Indiana permitted hunters to kill only one buck per season. Brackett further admitted that he transported the second, 11-point buck he had nicknamed the “Unicorn Buck,” for its unique antler formation, to his home in East Peoria.
Brackett featured the “Unicorn Buck” kill on his television show in 2014. Brackett further admitted that he instructed his cameraman and producer to hide footage of the kill of the first, smaller eight-point buck. Brackett also admitted that in 2017, prior to charges being filed against him, he instructed an employee to destroy an eight-point rack.
At sentencing, scheduled on Nov. 5, 2019, before U.S. District Judge Michael M. Mihm, the government and Brackett have agreed to a sentence of 30 months of probation with the condition that during the 30-month period, Brackett is banned from hunting worldwide. Brackett has also agreed to pay $3,500 in restitution to the State of Indiana and to pay a $26,500 fine.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Legge in the prosecution, with the assistance of Assistant U.S. Attorney Georgiann Cerese from the Environmental Crimes Section at the Department of Justice. The charges were investigated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with the assistance of both the Illinois and Indiana Departments of Natural Resources.