Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Forest Service is paid full restitution for resource damage

The US Forest Service recently was paid full restitution in United States District Court concerning a resource damage case involving a fraternity from the University of Idaho.

On May 5, 2010, several members of the fraternity were charged with creating a road into Vassar Meadows located on the Palouse Ranger District, Clearwater National Forest.  

Suspects admitted that they knew it was wrong to drive in the meadow, but once the rough road was created, others arriving followed suit creating more damage.  At least one vehicle was stuck creating deep ruts in the meadow.

USFS law enforcement worked with the Palouse Ranger District hydrologist to put together a damage assessment to seek restitution.

On Jan. 20, 2011 in the United States District Court in Moscow, a federal prosecutor agreed with the defense to allow the fraternity to pay full restitution for the resource damage.  The court agreed and restitution was made to the US Forest Service for the amount of $4382.00.

The Forest Service will use the money to decompact the soil, plant vegetation, block access to the meadow, and design/install a sign.

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