killing a protected hawk.
18-year-old William Hefley was arrested Saturday on a charge of extreme cruelty to animals, but Luna County Sheriff’s Investigator Israel Saenz, Junior, said that charge may be
replaced with federal charges now that the case has been turned over to officials with the NM Department of Game and Fish.
The five–year-old female Harris Hawk belonged to trainer Sherry McDaniel, who had a Falconry Permit for the raptor. The hawk was valued at $3,000.
McDaniel said the hawk was flying west of her residence off Red Rooster Road Saturday just after 5 p.m. when she heard a shotgun blast. She lost visual of the hawk, started calling the hawk to return, and finally checked the locater chip implanted in the hawk which indicated the bird was no longer moving.
McDaniel and two friends started running toward the signal indicator and saw Hefley fire a
22-caliber rifle at the hawk, which was on the ground.
Saenz said Hefley admitted to initially shooting the hawk with a 20-gauge shotgun from about
30-yards away, and intended to finish the bird with the 22-rifle, but believes he missed with the second shot. The hawk died as a result of the shotgun hit.
Hefley said he was in the area with a shotgun to kill his grandmother’s dog, which was sick and