Virginia man pleads guilty to killing eagle that ate fish from pond

Allen Thacker, of Smithfield, pleaded guilty to unlawfully killing eagle

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) – A Virginia man has pleaded guilty to killing a bald eagle because he was upset that the bird was taking fish from his pond.


The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia says in a statement that 62-year-old Allen Thacker of Smithfield pleaded guilty Tuesday to unlawful taking of a bald eagle.


Prosecutors say Thacker admitted in court documents to shooting the eagle and then running over it with an all-terrain vehicle because he was mad the bird was hunting in a pond on his property.


They say Thacker first tried to scare the eagle away with a warning shot and killed the bird when that didn't work.


Thacker faces a maximum punishment of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine when he's sentenced in October.


Thacker's attorney did not immediately respond to a telephone message seeking comment.