204-Inch Bow-Buck Returned To 17-Year-Old Hunter
Ragan Paramore paid a $237 fine for hunting without a license and went home with the rack.
The saga of a massive Worth County buck taken with a bow by a 17-year-old hunter, later confiscated by DNR because the teen didn’t have a valid hunting license, has concluded with the young hunter paying a fine and the rack being returned.
“We paid the fine, and we got the horns,” said Jeff Paramore, father of 17-year-old Ragan Paramore, who killed the buck on Nov. 10.
Jeff said the total fine was $237.
DNR Law Enforcement confiscated the Worth County, 204-inch bow-kill on Thursday, Nov. 15. Ragan was given tickets for not having a big-game license and not having a hunting license, although he tried multiple times to purchase a hunting, big game and harvest record on the afternoon before killing his buck.
Ragan had checked his trail camera on Saturday morning, Nov. 10 and discovered the giant buck named “Chester,” well-known in the area but never before on their land, and decided to go hunting. (For the full hunt-story and later updates, click here.)
GON spoke with Ragan about the license issue on the morning of Nov. 19.
“I got the picture, and I told daddy about it, and he said, ‘You better get in the stand pretty early,’” said Ragan.
Ragan said this was the first time he’d been hunting during the 2018-19 deer hunting season, and he was aware that his hunting licenses had expired in early September 2018. His dad, Jeff, had purchased his licenses the year before, so Jeff sent Ragan his DNR online account information so that the 17-year-old could purchase them on his phone.
“I logged in and went to purchase my license,” said Ragan. “It just sat there and loaded and loaded and loaded. I probably tried three or four times. I tried on WiFi and LTE. There’s just a little thing that was spinning on the phone.”
Ragan said he believed his license purchases went through after multiple attempts, and he went hunting and ended up killing the buck of a lifetime. Ragan was hunting on his grandmother’s land, the family farm.
“I thought my license had gone through until I went to tag the deer that afternoon on my phone, and it (Game Check) wasn’t there,” said Ragan. “After I tried to tag the buck, I told daddy about it.”
After realizing the license purchases did not go through on Ragan’s phone earlier that afternoon, his dad went to purchase his son’s licenses on his phone.
“Daddy said it wasn’t working on his phone,” said Ragan. “He tried it five or six times. We were on WiFi, and we were thinking the WiFi wasn’t working, so he went and got three bars of LTE, and it still didn’t work.”
Jeff did end up getting Ragan’s licenses after about an hour of trying and multiple attempts.
Jeff Paramore said that they originally had a court date for Ragan’s charges, but they got a phone call.
“They said we didn’t have to appear. All he had to do was pay the fine, and the horns would be awarded back to him,” Jeff said.
“It was a God honest mistake. There was never any intent to do anything wrong,” Jeff said. “This kid was heartbroken.”
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