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Alberta MLA Derek Fildebrandt charged with illegal deer kill on private land

Derek Fildebrandt is charged with unlawful possession of wildlife and entering onto private land without permission.
Derek Fildebrandt is charged with unlawful possession of wildlife and entering onto private land without permission. THE CANADIAN PRESS / Bill Graveland

An Alberta member of the legislature who is already dealing with charges of hit and run is now facing accusations of illegally shooting a deer.

Derek Fildebrandt, the Independent member for Strathmore-Brooks, has been charged with unlawful possession of wildlife and entering onto private land without permission.

WATCH BELOW: How do constituents in Strathmore-Brooks feel about Derek Fildebrandt?

How do constituents in Strathmore-Brooks feel about Derek Fildebrandt?
How do constituents in Strathmore-Brooks feel about Derek Fildebrandt?

READ MORE: Derek Fildebrandt pining to return to UCP benches

Alberta Justice said that on the afternoon of Nov. 4, fish and wildlife officers were called about a deer shot on private land without permission from the landowner in a field near Sundre in west-central Alberta.

Fildebrandt is to appear in court Feb. 2 in Didsbury and is not taking issue with the charge.

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WATCH BELOW: A closer look at expense claims that led to Derek Fildebrandt’s resignation from the UCP caucus

A closer look at expense claims that led to Derek Fildebrandt’s resignation from the UCP caucus
A closer look at expense claims that led to Derek Fildebrandt’s resignation from the UCP caucus

READ MORE: Alberta MLA Derek Fildebrandt steps down from United Conservative Party caucus

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Fildebrandt said he didn’t realize he was on private land when he shot the animal, has apologized to everyone involved and has donated the deer meat to a local food bank.

“I took full responsibility in my conversation with the owner and fish and wildlife officer and am deeply sorry for the accident,” Fildebrandt said.

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In March, Fildebrandt posted a photo on his Twitter feed from the Wheatland Conservation & Wildlife Association’s wild game fundraising dinner, where he said he bid on a Browning rifle.

In April, he posted another photo, showing off a rifle he’d bought at the Calgary gun show.

He is due in court in Edmonton on Monday for a verdict on a charge of hitting a neighbour’s van in June 2016 and then driving away. He has told court he didn’t do it.

READ MORE: Alberta MLA Derek Fildebrandt accused of claiming meal expenses twice

The hit-and-run charge was one of a trio of revelations that forced Fildebrandt earlier this year to quit the caucus of Alberta’s new United Conservative Party and sit as an Independent.

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Fildebrandt, known as an acerbic, take-no-prisoners, bulldog defender of the public purse, was also found to have been subletting on Airbnb his taxpayer-subsidized accommodation in Edmonton and double-expensing some meals.

With a file from 770 CHQR’s Alyssa Julie