Federal trial over Wisconsin Chippewa night deer hunting ends; ruling months away

  • Updated: July 26, 2013 - 5:45 PM

MADISON, Wis. — A federal trial over whether Wisconsin's Chippewa tribes can hunt deer at night has wrapped up but a decision isn't likely for months.

The state Department of Natural Resources has long banned night deer hunting deer out of safety concerns. The Chippewa agreed to abide by the prohibition when they were hashing out hunting and fishing rights in front of U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb two decades ago.

The tribes now contend they should be allowed to hunt at night because the DNR has allowed night hunting to contain chronic wasting disease and let hunters kill wolves at night this past fall.

Crabb listened to both sides' arguments during a weeklong bench trial that ended Friday. Crabb didn't rule, instead giving the attorneys until mid-September to submit final briefs.

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