Missoula Man’s First Elk Stolen From Pickup Truck, Police Investigating Theft
Missoula resident Ethan Donaldson was excited when he shot his first bull elk on the last day of hunting season this year, however, jubilation turned to frustration after someone stole the elk out of his truck, which was parked right outside his apartment.
"I had tucked it down in the bed of my truck when I went inside of my apartment, because I didn't want anyone to take it, then I walked out the next morning to take it to my buddy's house and it was just gone! I was just in disbelief that someone could do that to somebody else," Donaldson said.
Missoula Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh says police received the theft report on Tuesday afternoon, and are searching for the stolen elk, however, there has been some difficulty in assigning a value to the missing antlers.
"Regarding the theft of an elk skull and antlers from the 2500 block of Clark Fork Lane... it is a theft, however, to establish the value will probably take counting with other agencies to determine if there even is a value that we can apply to it, to determine the seriousness of this offense," Welsh said.
The value will determine whether the theft is a misdemeanor or a felony. According to Vivica Crowser from Montana FWP, one or two crimes like this are reported every year, sometimes the animals are stolen right out of people’s garages.