Conservation Officers have charged two Fort St. John men with harassing wildlife after they filmed themselves jumping onto the back of a moose on a lake near Fort Nelson.
In June 2015, the B.C. Conservation Officer Service was forwarded a video of a man jumping from the prow of a boat onto the back of a swimming moose and riding it for several seconds. Wolftracker TV, a conservation group, posted the video on YouTube, generating national media attention. As of this post, the video had more than two million views.
Officers later identified the lake as Tuchodi Lakes north of Fort St. John. Investigators believed the video had been taken the previous summer, based on snowpack on the mountains surrounding the lake.
"As a result of the year-long COS investigation, a report to Crown Counsel was submitted recommending charges against two males from Fort St. John," the service wrote in a release.
In a conference call with media June 30, Conservation Officer deputy chief Chris Doyle announced charges had been laid "in the moose rider investigation."
The men have been charged with harassing wildlife with the use of a boat, attempting to capture wildlife and "hunting big game that is swimming."
The two will appear in Fort Nelson Provincial Court August 8. According to court records, they are Bradley Dale Crook, born 1985, and Jaysun Allan Pinkerton, born 1983.
—this is a developing story that will be updated as information becomes available. With files from the Prince George Citizen.