EUGENE, Ore. -- Police ticketed three freshmen Ducks basketball players Monday night on suspicion of shooting pellet guns at ducks and geese in Alton Baker Park.
Police cited Michael R. Dunigan, 19; Teondre Javon Williams, 19; and Josh Crittle, 19, on suspicion of violating park rules against discharging pellet guns and hunting in Eugene city parks.
KVAL News attempted to contact all three players Tuesday morning.
“This incident is a very serious matter," head coach Ernie Kent said in a prepared statement. "Although these three young men realize that it was a foolish mistake on their part, there are still consequences that they will have to face. We are still in the information gathering process.”
Students on the UO campus were surprised by the accusation.
"It shouldn't happen," said Ty Hyland, a UO student. "Maybe they should be shooting beavers or something ... nutria!"
"They shouldn't have been out there shooting ducks," said Becky Bland, a UO student. "Why would they be doing that? But it's kind of funny and ironic."
Officers see pellet gun fired, thrown in pond
Police received a report of three men shooting in Alton Baker Park at 11:08 p.m. Monday night.
Officers arrived and watched the trio shoot about 20 rounds from what was determined to be a pellet gun.
The three headed towards the restrooms, and officers saw Dunagin throw up his hands, followed by a splash. Officers later recovered a gun from the pond. Two other pellet guns were located elsewhere, police said. Police are holding the two Powerline brand guns and a Crosman brand gun as evidence.
City park rules prohibit hunting and firearms in city parks, including pellet guns.
The base fine for the violation is $155. The violation is a misdemeanor with the same fine structure as having an open container of alcohol in the park, according to police.
The three were cited to appear in court April 14.
Park rule 1.015 Hunting and Firearms.
(1) In a park or open space area, no person may:
(a) Hunt, pursue, trap, kill, injure, molest, or disturb any wildlife.
(b) Discharge a firearm, pellet gun, bow and arrow, slingshot, or
other weapon capable of injuring a person or wildlife.
(2) Notwithstanding Subsection (1) of this section, persons may hunt
migratory water fowl in a park or open space located outside of the
City limits that is being leased by a private party for agricultural
purposes if permission to hunt the migratory water fowl has been
granted by the lease holder.
(3) City staff or staff from other wildlife management agencies are
exempt from Subsection (1) of this section when performing authorized
duties of their position.