MANCHESTER TOWNSHIP -- The search is on for whoever shot and killed some rare and exotic animals at a ranch in Wayne County.
The animals' owner says he's had problems with trespassers before but never anything this bad.
Louis Lampitelli says he feels violated after an estimated $18,000 worth of livestock was killed and then taken from his private hunting reserve near Honesdale. This situation has hit him so hard, he says he hasn't been able to sleep at night.
State police are now trying to solve the case of the exotic deer that were killed and taken from Lampitelli's private hunting reserve near Honesdale.
Lampitelli owns Moonshine Ranch in Manchester Township, which offers hunters private preserve hunts and hunts out in the open. The exotic animals that include black buck antelope and red stag were targeted in the private preserve area.
This all comes at a peculiar time as Lampitelli made the call to state police on the first day of rifle deer season.
"Some that were found were shot through the fence and left for dead. The trophy white bucks were pulled over the fence. Now that we're thinking hunting season has started, they're going to pull the ear tags out and try to claim them with a Pennsylvania tag that they took it naturally," Lampitelli said.
And Lampitelli says that his losses are at approximately $18,000. The memory cards to his security cameras were also taken out and deleted. So, there's no existing security footage.
"It's heartbreaking. I can't even sleep at night knowing that somebody would actually go and do something like this, just leaving animals for dead."
Along the trail, Lampitelli found his 12-foot-high fence damaged. He believes this illegal activity has been going on for weeks now. Last week, he found a whitetail deer wounded by an arrow.
"We found about a week ago one of the animals walking around that kind of looked like something was wrong with it. Couldn't stand up, it kept falling down. So we put it out of its misery and brought it back to my house. I had my taxidermist skin it, where we found a broadhead in the side of the animal."
And the reward for information on the person or persons responsible is up to $2,500. If you have any information, you're asked to call state police.