BROWN COUNTY (WKOW) -- Hundreds of people have signed an online petition started by a Baraboo man. The petition proposes a new state law that would let hunters go on private property to retrieve a deer if a warden or sheriff's deputy is with them. But at least one sheriff's captain tells WBAY it won't be a good idea.
With gun deer season just days away, the Brown County Sheriff's Office knows an increase in calls is coming. Capt. Dan Sandberg says, "We get calls quite frequently, and it's always about trespassing. It's what it always is. We get a complaint that there's somebody that's in orange, they see a hunter and they're on somebody else's property without permission."
With current state law, you don't have a right to go on someone else's property to retrieve a deer. "That's their privacy rights, and that's their right to control their own property," Capt. Sandberg says.
But the online petition started by a Baraboo hunter proposes a new state law allowing hunters to access private land to retrieve a deer with proper authorities, even if the landowner says stay away.
Sandberg doesn't support the idea, even though he's an avid hunter. "We're not real enthusiastic about something like that because you're going into an area where people have their rights, their constitutional rights to their property."
Department of Natural Resources wardens declined to comment to WBAY about the petition, saying they enforce the rules and regulations dictated by state law.
Capt. Sandberg sees other problems with it. "Somebody could spend an hour, they could spend two hours, six hours, 12 hours or 2 days looking for that deer and we don't have that manpower to go around and walk with somebody through the woods just because they didn't have permission of a landowner to go through there."
Which is why Sandberg advises all hunters to have a plan if you're hunting near private property. "Communicate with those landowners prior to it, so you have a plan in place and that you know you have permission to be going on their property."
As of early Wednesday morning, the change.org petition has 245 supporters.