DURHAM, N.H. – Two brothers from Seabrook were arrested today (Wednesday, November 19, 2014) after fleeing from a Conservation Officer who found them hunting on posted land in South Hampton, N.H.
Robert M. Watts, age 48, and Scott Watts, age 45, both Seabrook residents, were hunting in a posted area of South Hampton, N.H., this morning when a New Hampshire Fish and Game Department Conservation Officer checking the area observed the illegal hunting activity and instructed the pair to stop. The men immediately took off running, both carrying shotguns, into a nearby swamp.
The Conservation Officer chased the men for several hundred yards while identifying himself as an Officer and warning the pair to stop or face charges. The CO stopped the foot pursuit to call for backup from Fish and Game Law Enforcement, the South Hampton and Kensington Police Departments and the Rockingham County Sheriff’s Department, requesting they cover the places commonly used to access the area.
The Fish and Game Officer then circled the swamp and found a truck parked at the end of a dead-end Class VI road. Conservation Officers and South Hampton police blocked off the entrance to the Class VI road and proceeded to wait. In a short while, the truck appeared, and the officers stopped the vehicle to question the occupants. The men in the truck denied any wrong-doing, but their clothing and physical descriptions matched exactly that of the men who had fled the Officer. To confirm the ID, a Fish and Game K-9 team was brought in, and Fish and Game K-9 Sig conducted a track from the start of the foot pursuit through the swamp to the location where the vehicle had been parked.
Robert and Scott Watts were taken into custody and arrested for Disobeying an Officer and Trespassing. They were released on their own recognizance and will be arraigned in Seabrook District Court in January of 2015.
“In this case, refusing to stop when instructed to do so by a Conservation Officer increased the charge from a violation to several criminal offenses,” said Fish and Game Lt. Michael Eastman.
Hunters should be reminded that, in all instances, they must seek permission from landowners before hunting on posted property.