Alleged prolific poacher is jailed

Sequim man faces 26 counts, 2 in Jefferson County

A Sequim man facing 26 big-game-poaching related charges, including two in Jefferson County, has been jailed on $60,000 bail after failing to show up for three court hearings.

In a tearful rant, Jason Bradley Hutt, 29, on Feb. 14 pleaded unsuccessfully for leniency from Clallam County Superior Court Judge Lauren Erickson, apologizing for missing a Jan. 16 court date.

Hutt has a prior Clallam County District Court conviction for hunting and killing black-tail deer without tags or licenses in 2016.

“You disgust me,” he told Erickson, ignoring pleas by his lawyer, Harry Gasnick of Clallam Public Defender, to be silent.

Hutt is accused of illegally killing animals including elk near the Brinnon schoolhouse in Jefferson County, bear in Sequim on private property, and blacktail deer as well as wild birds in Clallam County.

He has a Jefferson County Superior Court hearing on two poaching charges in April, Prosecuting Attorney James Kennedy said on Feb. 15.

Hutt collected elk and deer heads as trophies, Fish and Wildlife Officer Bryan Davidson said in court papers.

On Feb. 14, Hutt blamed court staff for his not showing up for one of the hearings, saying he arrived at the courthouse for one hearing and was told it was on a different day.

Erickson followed the recommendation of Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Matthew Roberson.

She imposed $20,000 bail on each of the three pending cases, including two poaching charges and a possession-of-methamphetamine case to ensure Hutt’s appearance in court.

Erickson cited one case with 16 counts, including 12 for alleged first-degree unlawful hunting of big game.

“You’ve had two bench warrants out on this case twice,” she told Hutt.

They were issued Oct. 17 and Jan. 16.

“That’s a lot for one case,” Erickson said.

“I’m going to keep the bail where it presently set,” she said, “to guarantee Mr. Hutt’s future appearance in court.”

The court hearing was conducted by video from the jail. Hutt left the table where Gasnick was also seated before returning, crying.

“I’ve been through everything,” Hutt said.

“I live on top of a mountain and have to walk 11 miles to catch a bus. I’ve done as much as I can to try and be there on everything I’ve done. All my stuff is (expletive deleted) gone.”

Erickson warned Hutt about his language.

“I lost my car, my other house, and I have nothing now, thank you,” Hutt continued. “My dogs are going to the pound. I can’t even get them; they’re probably gonna die.”

Erickson set Hutt’s next hearing for 1:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 21.

The 16 counts cover Aug. 23-27, Aug. 31, June 1, June 31, and Sept. 4, all in 2018 and in Clallam County.

State Fish and Wildlife Department officers alleged that Hutt illegally killed several bears, deer and elk in Clallam County.

In the second poaching case, the 11 charges include bail jumping, second-degree unlawful hunting of wild birds, second-degree unlawful hunting of wild animals, first-degree unlawful hunting of big game and unlawful possession of a loaded firearm.

The charges stem from authorities reporting finding otter and bobcat pelts and a duck carcass at Hutt’s home Aug. 30.

Hutt allegedly committed the crimes Aug. 29-30, 2019.

The bail-jumping charge is connected with the Oct. 17 warrant for his arrest, issued after he posted $10,000 bond Sept. 6.

Wyatt James Beck, 24, of Sequim, an alleged accomplice of Hutt’s, pleaded guilty Jan. 30 to four counts of second-degree unlawful hunting of big game with accomplice liability.

He was sentenced to 240 hours of community service and 30 days on electronic home monitoring, and was ordered to pay $8,000 in fines.

Beck had helped Hutt poach three bears and three deer in Clallam County, and two elk in Jefferson County, according to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.