By MIKE CORN
When Dick Kelly pulled into the yard of an old farmstead near the long-gone town of Lyle in Decatur County, it's unlikely he ever imagined what would be unfolding before his very eyes.
Kelly, a game warden for the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, pulled in to check the licenses of a group of deer hunters, said KDWP Capt. Mel Madorin, based in Hays.
As it turned out, there were five Wisconsin deer hunters and Kelly found a cache of 12 deer -- nine muleys and three white-tailed.
Each hunter, however, only possessed a single permit -- to take a white-tailed deer only. And none of the 12 deer were tagged, as is required by law.
Calling for help from the Decatur County Sheriff's office, simply because of the sheer number of violators involved, Kelly set to work trying to unravel events that had unfolded.
At the same time, he and others put the 12 bucks on a trailer that was taken into Oberlin for processing.
That created a bit of a scene as residents stopped by for a look and several rounds of photographs were taken. And word started spreading.
The five people Kelley sought to check licenses were ultimately arrested.
They were identified as 53-year-old John Jacobs III, 45-year-old Mark Jacobs, 26-year-old Paul Jacobs, and 23-year-old Joseph Jacobs, all of De Pere, and 30-year-old John Jacobs IV of Green Bay.
They are all related, Madorin said.
The hunters were released after posting bonds totaling $83,500. They were all charged with possession of untagged deer, Madorin said.
There's the possibility that additional charges will be filed in the case, as it's still under investigation.
Madorin said KDWP also is investigating an incident in Ness County involving hunters from Louisiana. That investigation likely will be ongoing for a time because several of the hunters had returned home at the time KDWP became involved.
There were also a number of problems in the firearms season that just ended involving permission to hunt, but Madorin said that's a frequent complain.
"It appears to be the case in Oberlin was the biggest one," he said.