Four coyotes were reported dead, lying in front of three sorority houses and one fraternity on University of Idaho’s Greek Row Feb. 10.
Corporal Casey Green, liaison officer of UI through the Moscow Police Department (MPD) said an investigation over last week’s incident is still underway.
“In some cases talking to some of the (Greek) members, they didn’t even know it had happened,” Green said. “We live in a state of Idaho where these things aren’t necessarily uncommon.”
A similar incident occurred in January, in which one coyote was strewn on Delta Zeta Sorority’s front lawn.
The sorority shared video surveillance isolating when the first event happened, Green said. The suspect was identified as another Greek student, and he admitted it was a prank and meant no harm.
“The only potential criminal act of this is a littering offense — illegal dumping of an animal carcass,” Green said. “Otherwise, it’s an unregulated animal.”
There are no restrictions on coyotes, he said, as they are not considered game and can be hunted without a license.
“It’s not necessarily a public land issue, but it’s disturbing to have people disregard (a coyote’s) life and threaten our safety,” said Ashley Lipscomb, development director of Friends of the Clearwater.
Green said the Greek student involved is making atonement with his fraternity and the sorority but denies any involvement in the latest incidents.
Dean of Students Blaine Eckles said UI is in close contact with the MPD on the case’s status.
“We look at these situations as a moment of concern until we figure out what’s going on,” Eckles said.
If anyone has concerns, they should contact the MPD for emergencies, Eckles said. The university needs to make sure there is a certain understanding of what is occurring, he said.
Green said UI Public Safety and Security is involved along with the Latah County Sherriff’s Department and the City of Pullman Police to identify possible patterns of behavior in our region.
“We’re curious to find out about these other four animals … cause these animals were shot,” Green said. “I also look for evidence of other inclusive activities — even outside the community. The Palouse is very small.”
Eckles said it is best to look at this situation from a logical perspective instead of falling into speculation. He said to please contact the MPD or UI if anyone has information pertaining to these events.
“I mean the whole ‘I got your back’ is real. If we see something that is not appropriate … we should say something,” Eckles said. “We shouldn’t sit idly by.”
Catherine Keenan can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @Ckeeneye