Wednesday, February 8th, 2023
Wednesday, February 8th, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

OH: Cuffs and Collars Issue: 14

`Central Ohio – Wildlife District 1

• In April, Logan County Wildlife Officer Adam Smith received a
voice mail from an unknown caller. The caller’s message claimed
that Smith was not doing his job and that Smith was, “at home,
sitting on the couch, watching TV.” The next day, while Smith was
conducting sport fishing enforcement at Indian Lake, he made
contact with an angler and recognized the angler’s voice as the
voice of the caller who left the distasteful message the previous
day. When the angler was questioned about the voice mail from the
previous day, the man apologized. The angler was found to be in
possession of an open container of alcohol. He was cited for
possessing an open container of alcohol and was found guilty in
Bellefontaine Municipal Court.

• During the Memorial Day weekend, Wildlife officers Dirk Cochran
and Steve Harvey were teamed up to work sport fish enforcement at
Alum Creek Reservoir. After checking multiple fishermen and issuing
a few citations for fishing without a license and possessing short
largemouth bass, the officers observed three young men fishing and
drinking beers. The young men began to leave and they packed up all
of their trash. Harvey and Cochran contacted them at their vehicle
and the young men admitted to drinking and said they brought a
couple of beers to have while they fished. Cochran explained that
it was illegal to possess alcohol in a public place. Harvey then
asked to see their fishing license and two of the men admitted they
did not have one. As Harvey was writing the men citations for
fishing without a license, Cochran began to talk with the young men
about school. The young guys said they were completing their
graduate work and had already obtained jobs upon graduation.
Cochran complemented them on their success at school and one of the
men said “well, just because you are intelligent doesn’t mean
you’re smart.” They each paid a $155 waiver in a Delaware
court.

• One May evening, Delaware County Wildlife Officer Steve Harvey
was working sport fish enforcement at Delaware Lake. The lake had
finally lowered from the heavy April rain and the crappies were
starting to bite. After checking a few people on the wildlife area,
Harvey made his way to the dam. When Harvey peaked over the dam, he
saw a fisherman he recognized and had checked multiple times the
year before in the exact same spot. The fisherman was fishing in
the lake off of the rocks. The fisherman looked on top of the dam
and saw Harvey and then reeled in the fishing pole and set it
aside. Harvey felt something was up and made his way down to check
for license and bag limit compliance. When Harvey made contact, he
checked the license and saw the fisherman had a five gallon bucket
over ¾ full of crappies. Harvey asked the fisherman what the daily
bag limit was for crappie and the fisherman said some of the fish
came from the State Route 229 bridge. Harvey explained the
possession limit at the lake and that the State Route 229 was
within the 30-crappie daily limit. Harvey counted the crappie and
the fisherman had 41 in the bucket, 11 over the bag limit. The
fisherman received a citation and paid $155 waiver in Delaware
Municipal Court. All of the crappies were over nine inches.

Northwest Ohio – Wildlife District 2

• While conducting fishing license checks on the Maumee River in
Wood County during the annual white bass run, Wildlife Officer
Marty Baer contacted several individuals who were fishing. When
asked for their fishing licenses, one of the subjects stated he
believed it was a free fishing day. Baer advised him this was not
the case. In preparation to issue citations for fishing without a
license, Baer asked one of the subjects his age and birthday. He
replied 17, but gave a birthdate that would have made him 20 years
of age. The subject was unable to produce an identification card.
With the information given to him by the subject, Baer proceeded to
investigate. The information came back as a possible hit on a
felony warrant, and Baer requested assistance from the Perrysburg
City Police Department. The subject was eventually identified and
confirmed. The reluctance of the subject to identify himself was
easily understood as he had six outstanding warrants from Lucas
County, one of which was a felony. He was subsequently arrested and
transported to the Lucas County jail by a Perrysburg City
officer.

• In April, Erie County Wildlife Officer Kevin Good was working the
Sandusky River in Fremont. Good observed a man using multiple hooks
in the river during the walleye run period, which is prohibited by
law. Good made contact with the man. Good learned that the man had
been issued a summons earlier in the day by Ottawa County Wildlife
Officer Reid Van Cleve for snagging a walleye. Obviously the man
had not learned his lesson. Good issued the man his second summons
of the day for using multiple hooks.

• Wildlife Officer Ryan Kennedy observed several subjects fishing
at Fostoria Reservoir No. 5. When the officer began to contact
them, one of the subjects dropped his fishing pole and walked away
from it. The subject told officer Kennedy he was not fishing and
did not have a fishing license. Kennedy asked for his personal
information and was told by the subject he lived out of state, had
no phone, and was leaving in two days to return home. As Kennedy
was filling out a citation, the subject became increasingly angry,
cursing at him several times. At this time, the subject was
informed he would need to post a bond before he could be allowed to
leave and the subject became belligerent to Kennedy and informed
him in so many words that he did not have money for the bond. At
this time, the subject was arrested and transported to the Fostoria
Police Department. He appeared before the judge and was fined $75
plus court costs.

• During the spring walleye run, Putnam County Wildlife Officer
Jason Porinchok was watching fishermen when he observed a fisherman
reeling in a fish that was hooked in the tail and “surfing” in
backward. The angler finished his limit with this walleye.
Porinchok contacted the fisherman as he was leaving. When the
fisherman was advised that he was seen snagging the last walleye on
his stringer, he responded that it was hooked in the tail but it
first swallowed the jig then gulped water and the jig came out
through the gills and then hooked in the tail. Porinchok advised
him that he had watched him unhook the fish and the line was not in
the fish’s mouth. The fisherman was issued a citation for taking or
possessing a walleye that was taken by snagging. He paid a $127
fine and court costs. The illegal walleye was taken as
evidence.

• While working the Maumee River walleye run in April, Officer Bob
Wolfrum was contacted by a concerned fisherman. The man said that
he has been fishing a certain spot for the last several days and
observed that one specific angler has been doing extremely well,
twice as good as most. He went on to describe the angler and stated
that he has watched the man catch a limit of walleye in the
morning, leave, then return later in a different set of clothes to
catch a second limit of walleye. Wolfrum asked the sportsman if he
would call if he sees the suspect angler again and to get a vehicle
description if possible. The very next morning, Wolfrum received a
call from Wildlife Officer Ringer, who works at the Wildlife
District 2 office. She advised that a man had called to report that
the suspect angler had just left the Maumee River with a limit of
walleyes. The caller gave Ringer a vehicle license plate number and
description along with a location where the fish were caught and
where the vehicle was parked. It just so happened that on that day
the angler did not return for a second limit, but armed with good
information from a concerned sportsman the suspect was caught on a
later date with four walleyes over the limit. He was cited into
Maumee Municipal Court, found guilty, and paid a $214 fine.

Northeast Ohio – Wildlife District 3

• In May, the Ohio Division of Wildlife, in conjunction with the
Ohio Division of Watercraft and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat
Commission, conducted a sport fishing project on Pymatuning
Reservoir. The multi-agency law enforcement project resulted in 24
arrests for various violations, which included taking over the
legal limit of walleyes, possession of undersized walleyes, litter,
and several watercraft violations.

• During April and May, numerous wildlife officers from northeast
Ohio descended upon the Mahoning River below the Lake Milton dam,
targeting their efforts on individuals committing walleye
violations. During one of the law enforcement projects, Stark
County Wildlife Officer Mark Basinger charged an individual for
taking three walleyes over his daily bag limit. While fishing in
the river several days later, the same angler caught his daily bag
limit of walleye in the morning and returned later in the afternoon
to catch additional fish. During that time, officers observed him
take seven walleyes over his legal limit as well as snag one of the
fish. He was contacted by Wildlife Officer Supervisor David Shinko
later in the evening and issued summonses for the two violations.
He appeared in court on all three charges and was convicted. He was
ordered to pay $730 in fines and court costs and his fishing
privileges were revoked for two years.

Southeast Ohio – Wildlife District 4

• Wildlife officers and investigators recently worked a project at
Lake Rupert Wildlife Area in Vinton County. The project was
scheduled due to an increasing problem with litter being discarded
around the lake. While conducting surveillance, the officers
observed three individuals fishing from a boat. The operator of the
boat was running from one side of the lake to the other at full
speed with a 30-horsepower outboard motor. Lake Rupert is
designated as idle speed only for watercraft possessing a motor 10
horsepower or greater. The officers made contact with the fishermen
and issued a summons to the operator for the violation. A warning
was issued for operating the boat after sunset without running
lights. The following day, watercraft officers observed this same
boat being operated on Ross Lake near Chillicothe. After conducting
an inspection, the watercraft officers found that there were
insufficient personal flotation devices on board, as well as other
violations. The watercraft officers issued this same individual
another summons for the PFD violation. During conversation between
officers from wildlife and watercraft, it was discovered that the
two separate ODNR divisions had contacted the same individual in a
two-day period in two different counties.

• State wildlife officers Eric Lane and Todd Stewart were working
the Muskingum River, checking fishermen near Stockport. Stewart
received a call about a possible litter violation on a tributary
that runs to the Muskingum River, so they decided to check it out.
While searching the banks of the tributary for the litter
violation, Lane noticed three individuals, two of whom were fishing
in this creek. Steward made contact with one individual who had his
fishing license. Lane contacted the other individual. When asked
for his fishing license, he told Lane that he had not had a chance
to buy one yet. He was issued a summons for fishing without a
license. The individual posted bond.

Southwest Ohio – Wildlife District 5

• While on patrol during the spring fishing season, Miami County
Wildlife Officer Jasmine Grossnickle observed a group of
individuals fishing along the Great Miami River in the city of
Troy. Grossnickle watched from the opposite river bank as the three
men fished. When Grossnickle made contact with the men and asked to
see their fishing licenses, one of the men said that he was not
fishing. Grossnickle asked the subject for his identification to
verify that he did not have a fishing license. The man’s Indiana
driver’s license came back invalid. Grossnickle asked the subject
for more information concerning his identification. After the
subject was unable to provide any further information about his
identity, Grossnickle asked the subject if he was legally in the
United States. The subject stated that he was not. Grossnickle
arrested the subject for fishing without a license. Immigration
interviewed the man and returned him to his country of origin.

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