GIBSON — The mayor of Gibson was arrested over the weekend following a car chase when he fled the authorities after being caught spotlight hunting for deer.
James Ronald Hudson, of X-way Road in Gibson was charged with felony fleeing to elude arrest in a motor vehicle and spotlighting deer on Sunday, according to Sgt. Aric Clark of NC Fish and Wildlife Commission.
“He was charged with a curfew violation because no weapon was found,” Clark said. “Spotlighting involves looking for deer with artificial light or a combination of headlights and artificial lights.”
Spotlight hunting uses bright lights to locate animals by reflection of the light in their eyes. It gives hunters an unfair advantage because it stuns the animals giving hunters a chance to move in closer to the animal and gives a longer time to aim and shoot. It is illegal to spotlight for big game in the state.
When the wildlife officer attempted to stop Hudson on Sydney Bean Road between Laurinburg and Gibson, he fled and lead the officer on a chase down X-Way Road, and through Gibson before ending up at Rockdale Avenue near Walker Street, according to law enforcement officials who spoke off the record.
If convicted Hudson could face a $50 fine and court costs for the curfew violation.
Hudson was convicted in 2015 for night deer hunting involving a firearm. That conviction could play a role in the judge’s decision as to his punishment according to Clark.
Hudson was elected mayor of Gibson in 2015, during the election he earned 45 votes, 93.75 percent of the vote and a write-in candidate earned three votes. He was re-elected this year after running unopposed and receiving 40 votes, while a write in candidate received 21 votes.
Hudson appeared in district court on Monday on the charges of felony fleeing to elude arrest in a motor vehicle and misdemeanor shining light for deer. No bond information was available.
The mayor has a second court appearance on Dec. 11 on unrelated charges of operating a vehicle with no insurance and not displaying a license plate.
Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169