ASHEVILLE — Three Western North Carolina men have been charged with illegally possessing elk antlers.
U.S. Attorney Anne Tompkins said Tuesday the men pleaded guilty to acquiring the antlers in the Pisgah National Forest and have paid $535 in fines and fees.
They are 28-year-old Jerry Meeks and 39-year-old Aaron Smathers, both of Canton and 40-year-old Robert Davis of Waynesville.
Sgt. Andrew Helton with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission says the men obtained the antlers in part of the forest in Heyward County. They say the antlers came from a buck found dead in February of last year.
Helton says officials don't know how the animal died but think the men removed the antlers.