A 57-year-old reality TV huntress is suing the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, accusing agents of unlawful interrogations and home raids after they accused two men she was supervising of poaching an antelope and a bear

Reality TV Star Alleges Privacy Violation in Hunting Investigation

Melanie Peterson, a 57-year-old reality TV star, has filed a lawsuit against Wyoming’s hunting agencies, asserting that her privacy rights were breached during an investigation into alleged illegal hunting activities.

The lawsuit specifically targets the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, accusing them of violating her right to privacy.

In response, the agency, along with the Wyoming Board of Outfitters and Professional Guides, has filed a motion seeking the dismissal of Peterson’s lawsuit, describing it as ‘baseless.’

Controversial Background and Legal Troubles

Peterson gained fame by winning the 2018 edition of ‘Extreme Huntress,’ a reality show featuring female hunters competing in skills challenges.

However, her legal troubles surfaced when she was arraigned in August 2021, pleading guilty to 19 charges related to alleged hunting violations spanning nearly a decade.

Notably, Peterson pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor charges, with three of them being Alford pleas, indicating an acknowledgment of the state’s sufficient evidence rather than an admission of guilt.

Unsettling Interrogation and Impact on Family

Peterson’s complaint details a troubling encounter with Wyoming Game and Fish wardens at her hunting lodge in 2019.

Initially seeking permission slips for private property access hunting, the situation escalated into what Peterson describes as an ‘interrogation.’

The reality TV star alleges that she was unfairly treated, denied the use of her phone, and prevented from speaking with her husband during the encounter.

Disturbingly, her grandchildren, present at the lodge, were reportedly questioned ‘to the point of tears’ after search warrants were served.

Privacy Breach and Business Consequences

The lawsuit highlights further privacy breaches, indicating that 11 electronic devices were seized during the investigation, some of which were returned days later.

Peterson’s hard drive, submitted under a protective order of confidentiality, allegedly led to the disclosure of more than three terabytes of data, including medical records and attorney-client communications without redaction.

The Sublette County Attorney’s Office, according to the complaint, admitted a violation of Peterson’s Fourth Amendment rights in May 2022.

The legal dispute has not only impacted Peterson’s personal life but has also affected her business prospects.

Allegedly, discussions about the case at a dinner party involving members of the Wyoming State Board of Outfitters and Guides led to an outfitter declining to purchase Peterson’s business.

Wyoming Game and Fish, in adherence to policy, declined to comment on the ongoing lawsuit.

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