RUNNELS COUNTY - Four teens are facing charges for allegedly killing nine deer illegally in early December according to Texas Parks and Wildlife.

RUNNELS COUNTY - Four teens are facing charges for allegedly killing nine deer illegally in early December according to Texas Parks and Wildlife. 

On Dec. 3, Runnels County Game Warden Lane Pinckney, received a report of two transformers that had been allegedly shot. The transformers were the property of the Coleman County Electric COOP.

He also said a evidence was found that a deer had been killed. On the same night, a rancher near Lake Ballinger, reported two deer killed on his property. While investigating the scene, Pinckney discovered evidence which included a “love letter” which led him to one of the alleged shooters.

Bloody shell casings and bloody drag marks where the carcasses had been dragged out of the landowner's field were found, but no deer carcasses were located, Pinckney said. 

Upon further investigation, Pinckney discovered  evidence that six more deer had been reportedly killed illegally and given to a Miles resident. 

The investigation led Pinckney to three juveniles, all 16, and one adult, 17, all from Ballinger. Pinckney also discovered that three regulators, also owned by CCEC, had been shot as well. 

In all nine deer were discovered to have been killed over night between Dec. 3 and 4, Pinckney said.  He said the deer were reportedly taken to a Miles resident, who processed them before he could be contacted about the investigation.

The teens are facing one count each of criminal mischief, a third degree felony, killing deer without consent of a landowner, a state jail felony, hunting at night and hunting deer from the road, both Class A misdemeanors. The suspects may also have to pay for the damage to the CCEC equipment. 

The Miles resident who accepted the deer is facing Class C misdemeanor charges for possession of un-tagged deer and possession of a deer by illegal means. 

No arrests have been made and no citations have been issued.

“All of the evidence and reports have been turned over to the juvenile authorities, the county attorney and the district attorney,” Pinckney said. 

The teens reportedly took a photo of the deer carcasses in the back of their truck, which was obtained through the investigation. 

“I have never worked a case like this before,” Pinckney said.