Report: Boulder officer in elk shooting called in sick, operates taxidermy

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A Boulder police officer with a dead elk (Photo: Lara Koenig).

BOULDER, Colo. – The off-duty police officer who was involved in the killing and disposal of a large elk in a Boulder neighborhood called in sick the night the animal was shot and also operates a website advertising taxidermy, reported the Daily Camera.

Officer Bren Curnow, a 14-year veteran of the department, was suspended along with Officer Sam Carter when news of the shooting broke.

Both are also subjects of a criminal investigation by Colorado Parks and Wildlife and an internal Boulder police probe.

Police said Carter shot the elk near Ninth Street and Mapleton Avenue on New Year’s Day because the elk looked to be injured.

Curnow was off-duty and took the carcass home to process it for meat, a Boulder police spokeswoman said.

According to the Camera, the website is registered to Curnow. A spokesman refused to comment on the case.

The newspaper also reported Curnow was scheduled to work New Year’s Day, but called in sick, according to the chief of police.

Sunday members of the community attended a vigil for the elk, who residents nicknamed Big Boy. On Monday, the police chief, Mark Beckner, addressed a community forum saying he was mad about the officer’s actions.

Neither officer reported the elk being put down to dispatchers, nor had Colorado Parks and Wildlife been notified.

Police officers are required to make a report whenever they discharge their weapons. Parks and Wildlife is supposed to be notified when a large animal is killed.