While Palmer cowers from the spotlight like a wounded animal, new photos of the arrow-shooting dentist with an illegally killed black bear have emerged. In September 2006, the cavity detector was cruising Wisconsin’s north woods looking for a bear to shoot. Palmer and his guides found their prey. The only problem was that the massive forest rover was 40 miles outside the area they were permitted to hunt in.
But as we’ve since learned, little details like the law haven’t always kept Palmer from bagging his trophy. Aided by bear dogs, Palmer took ol’ Smokey down and hammed it up in front of a camera with its carcass.
“As soon as the bear was killed, Palmer and the three guys he was with — guides — they agreed they would lie about it,” U.S. Attorney John Vaudreuil tells ABC’s 20/20.
Of course, the feds don’t take kindly to fibbers. So Palmer, apparently flush with DDS cash, offered his brothers in camo a pile of money to remember the hunt differently.
“He was lying to us. He was offering to pay, it turns out, about $20,000 to keep the others who were in the hunt, to have them lie, so that’s a fairly aggressive cover-up,” Vaudreuil tells ABC.
Unfortunately for Palmer, the guides came clean. In 2008, the ethically unfettered hunter pleaded guilty to lying to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, receiving more than $2,900 in fines, one year of probation and a felony record.
It remains to be seen if Palmer will be charged for his cowardly lion killing in Zimbabwe. However, ABC reports the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have an open investigation.