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Jail Term for Hunting Saboteur

A downstate man has begun serving a jail term, after admitting he intentionally sabotaged a hunter’s tree stand in Marquette County.

Twenty-three-year-old Thomas Steele III, of Chelsea, was sentenced to 60-days in the Marquette County Jail.

Steele recently pleaded guilty in Marquette County Circuit Court to misdemeanors of aggravated assault and hunter harassment under a plea agreement.

Steele must also reimburse the victim’s medical expenses for injuries sustained in a fall from that tree stand. He must also serve a one-year probation term, and his hunting privileges were revoked for an undetermined amount of time. 

Steele confessed that he cut the straps to the tree stand because he was angry the other hunter had encroached on his hunting area. The incident took place on state land, where no hunter has the right to claim exclusive territory.

The other hunter suffered ankle and back injuries when he fell more than 15 feet from the stand, after the weakened straps gave way.

Steele was a student at Northern Michigan University at the time. 

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