Two men pleaded not guilty Monday to criminal charges of killing a mountain lion after it had been treed by hounds Feb. 1 near Hill City.
James Jucht, 71, of Sioux Falls and David D. Terveen, 63, of Emery entered their pleas before 7th Circuit Magistrate Court Judge Heidi Linngren. She set a jury trial for July 18.
The men were charged with violating the conditions of a big-game license, a Class 1 misdemeanor with maximum penalty of up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. It also carries the potential for a one-year suspension of hunting privileges.
Using hounds to hunt mountain lions is illegal in South Dakota overall. Very limited hound hunting was allowed during the season earlier this year in Custer State Park.
Prosecutors allege that Jucht and Terveen shot the lion after it was treed by hounds controlled by Wade J. Musick, 41, of Mitchell. Musick was charged with a Class 2 misdemeanor for illegally hunting with dogs during a lion season. A Class 2 misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of up to six months in jail and a $500 fine.
Musick already has a court trial set for June 11.