Whidbey hunter busted for illegal firearm possession

A deer hunter ran into trouble with the law last Halloween after deputies discovered he wasn’t supposed to be armed, court records state.

Michael Ferren, a 45-year-old Langley resident, pleaded not guilty in Island County Superior Court June 1 to a count of unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree.

A resident in the area of Fox Spit Road near Langley reported hearing two shots fired at 6:24 p.m. on Oct. 31, 2014.

An officer who responded spoke with Ferren, who said he shot a deer in the clearcut. He had a valid hunting license and deer tag.

A deputy with the Island County Sheriff’s Office, however, knew that Ferren was served a domestic-violence protection order which stated he wasn’t to possess any firearms and was supposed to surrender his firearms, according to the court documents.

The two officers walked into the clearcut to look for Ferren. They found the wounded deer, which was shot in the hindquarters.

The deputy “dispatched” the deer.

The officers found Ferren, who was armed with a 12-gauge shotgun. The deputy said he was concerned that Ferren had shot the deer past legal shooting hours, but he denied it, the deputy’s report states.

The deputy took custody of the shotgun; Ferren admitted he also had a .22 rifle and muzzleloaders at his home, the report states. The deputy later tried to contact Ferren at his house to get the weapons, but he couldn’t be located.

The deputy’s report doesn’t indicate what happened to the venison.