Karen Wells (right) was arrested by the Idaho State Police Tuesday afternoon in connection with demonstrations against the state's stance on wolves.
Several wolf advocacy groups descended on the Idaho Statehouse Tuesday afternoon to protest what they are calling Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and the Idaho Legislature's open war on wolves, resulting in an arrest.
Demonstrators stood on the Capitol steps and in the hallway to Otter's office chanting slogans like "Save the wolves, stop Otter's slaughter," and Idaho State Police troopers confiscated the demonstrators' megaphone, but when members of the group attempted to block the governor's office door, demonstrator Karen Wells was arrested.
"We've been trying to get arrested," said Clarisa Damron of the Wolf and Wildlife Action Group.
The protesters decried the state of Idaho's so-called Wolf-Kill Panel
, a five-member group that oversees the killing of wolves that might conflict with livestock interests. According to Defenders of Wildlife
a group in the midst of a statewide advertising campaign to raise awareness of the issue, the state will reduce its wolf population from 659 in 2014 to 150 in 2018.
"The problem is, [Otter] doesn't want 'em here. He never did," said Damron. "The wolves belong to the Creator and I'm pretty sure that's not Otter."
Spiritual leader for the group Jimmy St. Goddard, who preferred to use his Native American name, Eesukyah, said he has been campaigning for wolves for 38 years, and hopes that the demonstration would help bring about a change in Idaho's leadership.
"[Otter] is the only governor who's doing this," he said. "[Democrat] A.J. [Balukoff]'s going to win the election if Otter keeps doing what he's doing."
Demonstrators gathering around an Idaho State Police vehicle parked in front of the capitol.