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Unlicensed, undocumented and under arrest in deer poaching in Loyalhanna Twp.

Paul Peirce
| Friday, Nov. 17, 2017, 1:54 p.m.
Angel R. Amaya, 30, an illegal alien who gave police a Beaver Falls address, was charged with unlawfully shooting a deer with a rifle during archery season in Westmoreland County on Nov. 7, 2017.
Angel R. Amaya, 30, an illegal alien who gave police a Beaver Falls address, was charged with unlawfully shooting a deer with a rifle during archery season in Westmoreland County on Nov. 7, 2017.

Authorities this week charged an undocumented immigrant with using a rifle to shoot a deer during archery season.

Angel R. Amaya, 30, who provided a Beaver Falls address, was arraigned Thursday on a felony count of illegal possession of a firearm by an alien unlawfully in the United States, a misdemeanor count of tampering with evidence, and summary citations of killing a big game animal during a closed season, possession of a firearm during archery season, and illegally possessing a hunting license without taking the required hunter education course. He was ordered held in the county jail on $100,000 bond while federal and local authorities determine his residency status.

State game officer William J. Brehun Jr. alleges in an affidavit of probable cause that Amaya illegally shot the deer while hunting on Nov. 7 with a rifle near a farm in Loyalhanna Township. Amaya has an acquaintance who lives nearby and was turned in by residents who were concerned that someone was hunting with a rifle during archery season, Brehun wrote.

During Amaya's arraignment, Brehun informed Washington Township District Judge Jason Buczak that authorities had received information that Amaya may be wanted on a detainer by federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials in San Antonio.

“I asked (Amaya) his status, and he told me he was an illegal alien,” Buczak said in explaining why he set a high bond.

Court documents said Amaya did not list any employment or country of origin.

Brehun wrote that when he questioned Amaya that day, he admitted to shooting the deer and provided game officers with an expired 2016-17 hunting license. Brehun said further investigation showed that Amaya never took the mandated hunting course.

“The deer had been quartered ... placed in a garbage bag prior to be carried out of the woods” and taken back to the his friend's home, according to the affidavit.

Officers recovered the 30.06 rifle used to shoot the deer after Amaya told them that he left it in the woods, Brehun wrote.

Brehun told Buczak that he had received word that Amaya was released from custody by authorities in Texas while awaiting a deportation hearing, court documents state.

Attempts to reach Brehun for comment were unsuccessful.

Paul Peirce is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-850-2860, ppeirce@tribweb.com or via Twitter @ppeirce_trib.

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