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Deer killing suspect faces drug charges

Photo by Michael Buckelew

Photo by Michael Buckelew

COVINGTON -- The Oxford man who allegedly mutilated a deer and then sent his cousin graphic photos has even more problems with Newton County authorities.

Orvie B. Crawford, 39, of 310 Lake Stone Lea Drive, Oxford, has now been charged with possession of marijuana, less than an ounce, after a search warrant for his home was executed in connection with animal cruelty charges brought by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources earlier this week.

Crawford and his cousin Stanley Hugh Ivy, 42, of Lawrenceville were arrested after the cousin sent photos of the deer in various stages of its death and mutilation to an inmate in the Gwinnett County Jail. Ivy described what was done to the deer, saying he was the one responsible. However, when questioned by law enforcement, it came to light that Crawford had killed the deer in Newton County.

Covington/Newton County Special Investigations Unit Commander Lt. Philip Bradford he was contacted by Ranger Eric Sanders after Sanders had interviewed Crawford in connection with the deer mutilation.

"Eric asked him was he under the influence of any narcotics," Bradford said, noting that at the time of the interview Crawford had been in possession of methamphetamine and a weapon. He will face charges for those violations in Gwinnett County. "Crawford went on to tell him he had smoked weed earlier that morning and Eric asked him if he had any more marijuana. He said, 'Yes, at my house in Newton County.'"

Bradford said he assisted Sanders in obtaining a search warrant for the home in order to search for remains of the deer, while SIU agents searched the home for drugs.

He said there was no evidence of methamphetamine found in Newton County.

"We found a misdemeanor amount of marijuana in his bedroom and outside we found deer parts in the woods and up near the house which coincided with the photographs and the size of the deer. We even located the rope he tied the deer up with" Bradford said. "Our only charge would be possession of marijuana, less than one ounce."

Bradford said this case was a unique one for him.

"I can say this was one of the oddest search warrants I've ever been involved in writing," Bradford said. "This tops them all of things I've been searching for."

The DNR is charging Crawford with cruelty to animals/wildlife, hunting without a license, hunting wtihout a big game license and possession of illegally taken wildife.

"I charged him with cruelty because he put a rope around the deer's neck, held it and shot it," Sanders said in an earlier interview.

The deer was allegedly obtained from the yard of one of Crawford's neighbors who complained that the 8-month-old deer was following her around. Crawford said he put a rope around its neck and took him back to his garage, but once inside the deer "went ballistic, started tearing up his garage," so he shot him.

A press release from Stacey Bourbonnais of the Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department said detention officers confiscated the photos when they came in the mail in the form of postcards. She said the photos showed the deer "being led on a leash, then with what appeared to be some type of stab wounds and next mutilated and decapitated. Mr. Ivy wrote on each postcard about how he stabbed and choked the young animal to death and went on to describe himself as a 'predator' in the cards."