Fisherman charged with trying to kill sea lion

Tools

By Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - A Rainier man faces federal misdemeanor charges of trying to kill a sea lion last April as it swam in the Multnomah Channel of the Willamette River off Sauvie Island.

In court papers filed Wednesday, federal prosecutors allege James Housley, 62, violated the Marine Mammal Protection Act by "harassing and attempting to kill a sea lion" by shooting at the animal.

The violation carries a prison sentence of up to one year and up to $100,000 in fines.

Federal prosecutors say Housley was fishing and became frustrated that a sea lion had taken a salmon off a companion's line and shot the animal twice in the head on April 18. The animal was seriously wounded and in distress. It's not known whether it survived the shooting.

In an earlier case, a fine and suspension of fishing privileges are pending final action from the U.S. attorney's office in Portland against a Portland man who pleaded guilty to harassing a marine mammal for shooting a sea lion while fishing near the Sellwood Bridge on the Willamette River in 2005.

Earlier this spring, U.S. Reps. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., and Brian Baird, D-Wash., proposed a bill making it easier to kill the most aggressive of the sea lions.

The animals have been blamed for taking a large chunk out of already shaky salmon runs. The mammals have been congregating just below Bonneville Dam where salmon get in line to swim up the fish ladders.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Most Popular

New Year's Resolutions

How are those 'New Year's Resolutions' going?

  • Right on track
  • Already busted
  • Never made any

Your Photos

YouNews Escape the Valley fog in sunny Lowell Escape the Valley fog in sunny Lowell
Patch, our cat is waiting for breakfast as he enjoys the Sun in Lowell while the Valley and Eugene has a blanket of fog. A 13 mile drive to Lowell east of I-5 and you can escape the fog that Eugene residents put up with. It is worth the short commute to live out of the fog for most of the winter.
YouNews Out of the fog Out of the fog
A short 13 mile drive east to Lowell and you can escape the Valley fog. 95% of the time that Eugene is socked in with fog there is blues skies in Lowell.