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Anaconda-Deer Lodge county attorney faces charge in hunting dispute

Posted at 2:49 PM, Feb 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-13 16:49:07-05

Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Attorney Ben Krakowka was cited with misdemeanor disorderly conduct along with another hunter.

In November, Krakowka, of Anaconda, was set up hunting in the area near the Racetrack Campground, waiting for elk to cross from private land into a small section of state land. Another hunter, Doug Fortner, came into this area and an argument ensued.

During the dispute, Krakowka is accused of firing his rifle into the area in order to scare away the herd and ruin the hunt. The two hunters met in a parking area where Fortner allegedly challenged the county attorney to a fight.

A rancher who owns this ranch that borders the area says conflicts like this are very common here during hunting season.

“I see a lot of conflict. We have a lot of people that park up on the road up here and get in disputes from the vehicles and get in disputes out on the state land where the parking area is over here,” said Ronnie Robinson.

She said this area attracts so many hunters that she and her family feel unsafe during hunting season.

“You know, we like to go hunt ourselves, but we won't even go out because we can hear bullets and shots and I had a mare shot last fall, actually,” said Robinson.

Krakowka did not wish to comment on the case. Both men as set to appear in Powell County Justice Court in March.