Records released in alleged Sublette County wolf abuse case

Game and Fish responded to KHOL and other public records requests Wednesday with videos of the wolf, confirming many allegations.
A wolf lies muzzled and leashed allegedly at the Green River Bar in Daniel. Cody Roberts was fined $250 for the "possession of a live animal." (Wyoming Game and Fish Department)

by | Apr 11, 2024 | Crime, Environment

New records released by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department help confirm several recent allegations of wolf abuse. Two videos show the wolf alive but leashed and muzzled in the corner of a room — allegedly at the Green River Bar. 

“He’s starting to get his legs under him,” a man in one video is heard saying.

”Yeah, he’s getting ready to get up again,” another added.

Cody Roberts, a Daniel, Wyo. resident, has been the subject of public scrutiny after KHOL first published a story two weeks ago detailing the incident. 

Game and Fish released videos and a highly-redacted case file Wednesday night in response to public records requests from KHOL and other news agencies. The case file confirms what many already knew: Roberts captured a live wolf and brought it to his house and a local establishment — before killing the animal.

Game and Fish has cited the man for “possession of a live animal” but not for killing the wolf — since that’s technically legal in the state’s “predator zone.” While many are calling for further animal abuse charges, Game and Fish has said that the state’s animal cruelty laws do not apply to “predators” and are not seeking additional charges as of now. 

Sublette County announced Wednesday that they are also investigating the case.

The story has reached regional, national and international audiences and spurred further discussion of the relisting of gray wolves as endangered in the region. The U.S Fish and Wildlife Service denied a petition by the Center for Biological Diversity to relist gray wolves as endangered species in the Northern Rockies in February. The center sued Fish and Wildlife over their decision this week.

Some, including wildlife organizations, see the management of wolves in states like Wyoming, Idaho and Montana, that allow hunting of the wolves, as mismanagement. Others, including many state lawmakers, see it as active management.

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