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Sitka Man Allegedly Poisons Dogs in Attempt to Kill Bears

Published On: Dec 24 2013 09:02:56 AM AKST   Updated On: Oct 25 2013 02:14:41 PM AKDT

Alaska State Troopers say a Sitka man faces a misdemeanor charge, after he allegedly poisoned two dogs during an attempt to kill brown bears at a local golf course with antifreeze-laden food.

A Friday AST dispatch says Sitka troopers were informed of the dog deaths, after consuming a toxic substance near the Sea Mountain Golf Course, Oct. 16. A week later Kevin Taranoff, a 31-year-old course employee, was issued a summons to appear in state District Court.

“After an investigation it was revealed that (Taranoff) had placed food laced with anti-freeze coolant near the Sea Mountain Restaurant in an attempt to poison brown bears that had been coming on to the course,” troopers wrote. “Further investigation revealed that Taranoff acted alone without the permission or knowledge of other employees, or owners of the golf course.”

AST spokesperson Megan Peters says wildlife troopers received the case from the Sitka Police Department on Oct. 16, following a report from the Pet's Choice Veterinary Clinic.

"Pet’s Choice reported that on (Oct. 15) they had two dogs come into their clinic with symptoms of being poisoned," Peters wrote. "The dogs were a German Shepherd Mix (Jango), and a young Black Lab (Tank). Both dogs died later that day and displayed some symptoms of being poisoned via antifreeze."

According to Peters, the diverse locations of the dogs' homes led troopers toward factors both animals shared.

"The dogs did not come from the same house or area. The one thing both dogs had in common was they spent time on (Oct. 14) near the golf course."

Taranoff has been charged with attempting to take brown bears by use of poison, a misdemeanor under state law.