Officials with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) say a Mahnomen County man faces charges of animal cruelty after he allegedly used a pontoon boat to harass a large buck in Tulaby Lake early in September, which resulted in the deer drowning.

According to DNR investigators, 55-year-old Steven Timm intentionally drove the deer further into the lake and used his pontoon boat to prevent the animal from reaching shore. Conservation officers were called to the scene by a witness, but by then the deer had already expired.

When confronted, Timm claimed that he was attempting to save the deer, not harass it. The boater later told officers that he spotted the deer swimming in the lake and attempted to turn it back to shore, but the animal ignored him and instead went deeper into the lake.

David Kvidt, a nearby resident who saw the entire scene unfold, described a different set of events. Kvidt said that the deer was already heading toward a public landing when Timm spotted the animal, and the boater circled the animal several times. At some points, it looked as if Timm was using the pontoon boat to block the deer from heading to shore. When it looked as if the deer was in trouble, Kvidt said he got on his own boat and tried to intercept Timm.

“It probably took 20 seconds to get to him,” the witness told The Star Tribune, “but by then, the deer had turned upside down.”

Timm denied harassing the deer when confronted, telling Kvidt, “What do you think I am, a deer killer?”

Photographs taken by Kvidt were later submitted to the DNR. During questioning Timm said that he may have accidentally put his boat between the deer and shore. Officials said that regardless of intent, it is always best to leave wildlife alone. Deer may not look like the most graceful swimmers, but they are actually quite capable of crossing small bodies of water without any help. It is only when humans harass them that the animals get stressed and run into problems.

“As the state’s wildlife management agency, we have a responsibility to protect the wildlife resource,” said Col. Ken Soring, DNR enforcement director. “Chasing wildlife with any type of motorized vehicle is unacceptable.”

Timm is charged with one count of animal cruelty and one count of using a motor vehicle to chase wildlife. Each charge carries a maximum fine of $1,000 and 90 days in jail if convicted.

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18 thoughts on “Minnesota Man Accused of Drowning Trophy Buck with Pontoon Boat

  1. Me personally I think he should be charged to the fullest extent of the law far as fine and if he a hunter lose his right to hunt for a few years! Even if it was trying to help he should be held responsible that’s just me! I have no problems with hunting at all I hunt and fish myself and enjoy doing it and that’s why I feel the way I do about it!!!!!!

    1. They should WATER BOARD this A$$WIPE . Loss of hunting rights , for LIFE . Then 5 years , IN THE SLAM . What a DISGUSTING EXCUSE for a HUMAN BEING

      1. YES!!! Totally agree! What was he going to do…mount the trophy on his wall and lie to everyone about what a great shot it was, but knowing what a low life he really is with drowning it???? What a douche!!

      2. Wow, your really ignorant. Fines? Yes. Waterboarding? I hope your being facetious. If not, the next time you’re late for work I hope they fire you and you lose your health insurance and retirement.

  2. I am a hunter, and felt sick when I read this. If the man is found guilty he should get charged to the max. I hope this article helps to educate others about what not to do. I also think it’s good to have his name exposed, if nothing else to shame him among the hunting community. What a sorry sorry mess of a “man”.


  3. This man needs the 180 days in jail and the $2,00.00 fine. It cost Dr. Palmer a lot more than that and he did nothing wrong. If just half the protesters showed up in court for this mans arraignment it send a better message also. He should loose all his hunting and fishing rights for at least 5 years in all states.

  4. I am a avid HUNTER to, but I did not hear anybody say anything about Mr. Kvidt being a good person and taking matters in to his own hands and filming this for the ( DNR ) Officer!!! Finally someone stepped up to the plate and took a stance for our wildlife & HUNTERS who enjoy the OUTDOORS!!!!!!!!
    I just HOPE that the D.A. on the boat realized that he just opened a bad can of Worms!!!!! Also I hope that his name is splattered through the Hunting & Fishing &Boating Community where he Lives & Shops!!!!! We can’t bring the BUCK back but I hope that this person will think real hard before he does a D.A. thing like this again!!! And I hope too that this A.H. gets what’s coming to him!!! And then some!!!! I guess Everybody feel’s like I do, Pissed Off as well!!!!!

  5. Everyone at some point has done some dumbass thing for whatever reason so as to those that wish death upon this man is absurd, however at 57 years old give this man 30 days in county, full 1000$ fine and suspend his boat tags[no one said he hunted or fished} an you got yourself a true believer an I couldn’t imagine him doin anything like this again. anyone who wishes harm to this man for bein stupid should definitely reconsider. as a all around outdoorsman I love nature and respect wildlife an there is no place or cause for what this guy did

  6. I hunt and this makes me absolutely furious. The blatant disrespect for wildlife this person has displayed would angry any ethical hunter out there. I’ve helped my share of deer and elk that have fallen through the ice in the river below my place. It’s 50/50 if they survive the ordeal, but at least pulled out and on the shore in the cover of trees, they have a better chance at recuperating and living another day, than they do suffering in icy cold water they can’t escape from, themselves.

  7. If the case can be proved thennprodecute him . It also could be that the only witness has something against boaters.on his.lake or has some.other agenda to fulfill . It is also possible that the witness misinterpreted the actions of the boater .Not enough.information given to hang the guy .

  8. some people just haven’t learned that in this day and age NOTHING goes unseen!! used to maybe but not any more with all the cameras and what . ever else people are carrying now days. this idiot needs to spend some time in jail and not just 90 days for two small charges! he needs to be hit with heavier charges and sent away for at least a year per charge with more than the two!

  9. Well, from the huge set of antlers this nice buck had, I believe the boater wanted it dead. Probably be on his wall if the landowner didn’t try helping. Shameful.

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