IL: Cuffs and Collars Issue: 21
A District 6 CPO responded to a complaint call in Winnebago County
of a man who had poached a red fox during the closed season using a
shotgun. The investigation validated this complaint. The CPO
learned from the suspect that he had shot the red fox because it
was eating stray cats in the area that he was feeding as well as
the tuna, sardines and dry cat food being left outside the back
door of his home for “his” cats. Appropriate enforcement action was
A District 1 CPO investigated a continuing complaint about a former
Lee County taxidermist who went out of business but is still in
possession of property of former customers. The investigation
revealed the taxidermist was continuing to perform taxidermy work
but did not have a taxidermy license. He was issued a citation for
no taxidermy license and instructed to return the property to those
wishing to retrieve it.
A District 6 CPO was on patrol in Starved Rock State Park. While
driving through the lower area parking lot, the officer observed a
fisherman at the sea wall pull back on his fishing pole like he had
just got a bite and was trying to set the hook. As the officer
continued to observe, the fisherman repeated the motion over and
over. The officer approached the fisherman and asked to see the
hook on the end of the line. It was a large weighted treble hook
used for snagging. Snagging is prohibited in the area he was
fishing. When asked for his fishing license the man stated he did
not have a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.
A CPO observed a parked car at the field entrance on the Green
River where the landowner has an ongoing complaint with people
hunting or fishing without permission on his property. A notice was
left on the windshield of the vehicle and the CPO continued with
her patrol, checking fishermen nearby. A short time later a local
Police Department officer was heard on the radio checking that same
vehicle and the fishermen were back. The CPO returned and the two
fishermen had maneuvered a canoe through the very shallow Green
River. An inspection was completed and the men were advised the
Green River was not a public body of water so they would need
permission from each landowner. Both men received written warnings
for the permission violation; however, one operator was issued a
citation for not having a wearable PFD aboard for each
A CPO responded to the complaint of illegal dumping of trash on
Department property located along the Fox River. The CPO
photographed the trash and found paperwork, i.e., bills, children’s
homework etc. that provided him with a possible suspect. Contact
was made with the suspect who claimed that he had paid a friend to
take his trash to the landfill. The suspect provided the CPO with
the name of an Ottawa man who did the dumping. The CPO located the
man who admitted that he had dumped the trash illegally and kept
his friend’s money. The man was charged for depositing trash on
public property under the Litter Control Act.
A District 6 CPO responded to a complaint from Boone County Animal
Control in the city of Belvidere regarding a woman who had
illegally captured a live red squirrel and was keeping it in her
living room within a parakeet cage as a pet. The investigation
validated this complaint. The suspect volunteered to the CPO that
she had captured the squirrel as a baby out of her yard after it
fell out of its nest. She then took it upon herself to “raising”
the squirrel for the past year in her home. The woman released the
squirrel, and appropriate enforcement action was taken.
Several District II CPOs have been investigating numerous burglary
to motor vehicle complaints throughout state parks in northeastern
Illinois. On Aug. 27, six vehicles were burglarized at Moraine
Hills State Park between 10:35 and 10:45 am. Windows were smashed
out and wallets and purses taken. The suspects then travelled east
to the Nippersink Forest Preserve where two vehicles were
burglarized. Next they travelled to the Illinois Beach State Park,
south unit, and broke into another vehicle. The suspects travelled
to the north unit and burglarized five additional vehicles, and
then drove west to the Van Patten Forest Preserve and broke into
three other vehicles. They continued west to the Chain O’ Lakes
State Park and burglarized three other vehicles. Break-ins at
commercial establishments in Spring Grove, McHenry, and other
surrounding communities happened later that evening. Later in the
week, five suspects were apprehended in Crystal Lake and Arlington
Heights in connection with illegal check cashing. One suspect had
in his possession a stolen cell phone from Illinois Beach State
Park. The individuals, known as the “Felony Lane Gang” had rented
vehicles from Florida, travelled across the country, leaving a
trail of break-ins and burglary to motor vehicle reports. The U.S.
Secret Service has been interviewing the individuals involved and
has been tracking them throughout several states. There were
supposedly eight people involved, and three suspects escaped on
CPOs found a suspicious vehicle parked in Fox Ridge State Park.
After waiting several hours, a Sigel man and a Garnavilla, Iowa,
man walked out to their vehicle. Upon seeing the CPOs they both
began to run and throw items. After commanding both subjects to
stop, the CPOs located freshly harvested ginseng, digging tools,
cannabis and drug paraphernalia. Both subjects were charged with
park violations and harvesting ginseng without permission. The Iowa
man was further charged with harvesting ginseng without a license,
possession of cannabis and possession of drug paraphernalia.
A CPO received a complaint from Illinois State Police District No.
12 regarding a subject trespassing to harvest ginseng in Cumberland
County. CPOs located a vehicle parked in the driveway of the
complainant. The CPOs parked behind the vehicle and went looking
for the subject in a nearby wooded area. Unable to find the
subject, they returned to the vehicle and found an Effingham man
sitting on the front porch of the residence of the complainant.
After interviewing the man, he admitted he was digging ginseng
without permission and without a license that day as well as with
his buddy the previous day. The man also handed the CPOs his drug
paraphernalia which he had hid when he saw the CPOs approach. The
CPOs were able to recover ginseng dug from the previous day and
were also able to identify the buddy who was also on the property
without permission the previous day. Both subjects were issued
citations for trespassing to harvest ginseng. In addition, the
subject caught in the act also received citations for no ginseng
harvest license and possession of cannabis and drug
A CPO cited a Clark County man for failure to maintain DNR game
breeders records. The CPO had contacted him after an Adams County
man purchased a deer from the individual without a receipt. The
subject had not kept records as required for the two years that he
has had his Game Breeders License.
CPOs responded to a fatal boat accident south of Hogback Island on
the Mississippi River. A watercraft ran over another watercraft.
One subject is missing. Several CPOs have assisted in the accident
investigation and body recovery.
CPOs assisted in recovering a skull at John Hay Boat Ramp in Pike
County. This case was turned over to the Pike County Sheriff’s
A CPO responded to a subject missing on the Illinois River. Three
subjects went fishing late one evening. When they ran out of gas,
one subject went for help, and did not return. The subject was
located several hours later walking down the riverbank.
A CPO recovered a dead bald eagle after it had been struck by a
A CPO and district sergeant investigated a personal injury boat
accident on the Illinois River at Grafton. The female subject lost
control of a personal watercraft and twisted her leg when she was
thrown from the boat.
CPOs and a district sergeant assisted Jersey County Sheriff’s
Department in securing the perimeter of a location, when a female
reported a home invasion. After several hours, the female subject
admitted she falsified the report.
A CPO arrested a subject for operating a watercraft under the
influence on the Illinois River at Grafton. The subject had a
blood- alcohol content of 0.097.
A CPO arrested two Greene County subjects for purchasing timber
without a license.
A CPO and district sergeant responded to a complaint on the
Mississippi River at Royal Landing, where a retired police officer
observed two subjects shooting a handgun from a boat. The subjects
were located and found to be in possession of two loaded handguns.
They were attempting to shoot carp as they jumped out of the
A CPO caught a subject with a short bass on Rend Lake.
A CPO caught a subject feeding deer on private property. The CPO
issued the subject a citation and seized a trail camera.
A CPO received a report from site personnel of a theft at Lake
Murphysboro State Park. Prior to this, another CPO completed a
theft report in August of four rental boats taken from the park. In
this instance lawn implements, a used wood stove and other scrap
metal were taken from a storage yard at the park. The total value
of the items is approximately $800. A report has been filed and the
investigation continues. The high price given for scrap metal
appears to be a factor in these thefts and others reported in the
A CPO located a baited deer stand in Union County and the area was
documented and under surveillance.
A CPO responded to a complaint of Union County man in possession of
two rattlesnakes and two copperheads. The case is under
A CPO caught a subject “snagging” catfish at the Rend Lake
spillway. A citation was issued.
A CPO caught two subjects dove hunting at the Rend Lake Wildlife
Management Area with lead shot and the wrong shot. Two citations
and two written warnings were issued.
A CPO caught a couple driving a car in the “restricted” area at the
Rend Lake Wildlife Management Area. One citation and one written
warning were issued.
A CPO apprehended two Murphysboro residents digging ginseng and
golden seal on USFWS refuge property at Crab Orchard. The case has
been referred to USFWS.
A CPO was conducting surveillance of teal hunters. He observed the
hunters shoot what appeared to be shovelers. During initial
contact, he asked the hunters if they were doing any good. They
both stated that they had not shot a bird. During inspection, the
CPO located and seized lead shot shells off of one of the hunters.
During his search of the area, he located two freshly killed
shoveler ducks hidden in the timber adjacent to them. They then
admitted to shooting the ducks and hiding them. The case will be
referred to the UFFWS.