Man accused of leasing hunting land he doesn’t own

November 28, 2013 at 06:03 PM

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin man has been charged with theft after officials say he leased hunting rights on land he doesn't own.

The property owner, Daniel G. Arneson, became aware of the scam after a neighbor chased several hunters from Arneson's land in Pleasant Valley, according to the Leader-Telegram (http://bit.ly/If8j6C ). The neighbor told Arneson that he knew Arneson didn't allow others to hunt there.

Arneson later found a hunter on his property, and the hunter claimed to have leased hunting rights from a man named Andy Jacobson.

An investigation led police to Andrew D. Martenson, 25, of Eau Claire, who was charged Monday in Eau Claire County Court with two misdemeanor counts of theft.

According to the criminal complaint, a hunter told investigators that he placed an ad on Craigslist seeking land to lease for hunting. A man who identified himself as Jacobson responded to the ad. The hunter and a buddy paid the man $500 to hunt deer and turkeys on about 30 acres.

The hunter later identified Jacobson as Martenson using a Facebook photo.

A second hunter who works as a salesman told investigators that he and a co-worker paid Martenson $1,500 to hunt on about 120 acres with prospective clients. The salesman said he checked the Eau Claire County plat book and found Arneson listed as the owner. When asked, Martenson said Arneson was a relative who asked him to handle leasing.

Martenson, who was arrested Friday, told investigators he knew about the land because he once dated a neighbor's daughter, the complaint said.

Judge William Gabler ordered Martenson released on a $200 signature bond and order him to have no contact with Arneson or the hunters. Martenson faces up to nine months in jail and a $10,000 fine if he's convicted.

A listed phone number for Martenson could not be found.

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Information from: Leader-Telegram, http://www.leadertelegram.com/


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.