Michigan Cuffs & Collars – May 24th, 2013

DISTRICT 1

Sgt. Marc Pomroy and CO Marvin Gerlach patrolled the walleye spawning run on the Menominee River, which has a special open season for walleyes – a one-fish limit during the spring. Late in the night, a subject was observed placing a walleye in a cooler in the back of a pickup. The subject then returned to the Menominee River and continued to fish. Surveillance was continued, and almost four hours later the subject and a friend both returned to the pickup, each of them carrying a large walleye. Contact was made with the subjects, and four walleyes were located in the truck. Both subjects were ticketed for overlimits of walleyes.
CO Brian Bacon worked the walleye run on the boundary waters of the Menominee River. CO Bacon set up surveillance on a group of anglers and observed one angler catch more than his limit of walleyes. When the anglers left the river, CO Bacon contacted them at their vehicle. After a short discussion, it was established that one angler had caught his limit of one walleye plus fish for two others in his group. Enforcement action was taken.
While patrolling the Menominee River, CO Marvin Gerlach observed two subjects acting suspiciously. One subject then was observed snagging a walleye and keeping it. Contact was made when the subjects prepared to leave, and enforcement action was taken.
CO Grant Emery was called to the scene of an overturned boat on the Montreal River in Gogebic County. Three subjects were in a small boat when it capsized in the strong current. The spring runoff had produced high water levels, and the subjects struggled to get to shore. CO Emery located one subject at a nearby residence and received directions on where to look for the other two subjects. The two wet subjects were located on the river bank and were taken to a local hospital for treatment of hypothermia. The boat was lost in the swift current, and it was determined that no life jackets had been on board. The investigation is ongoing.
CO Grant Emery was called to the scene of an ORV that was swept into the Montreal River near Lake Superior. CO Emery located the driver at the scene, and he stated he had driven his ORV into the river to wash it off. The swift current quickly washed his four-wheeler from his control and down the river. It came to rest on the shore of an island, and with the assistance of a group of white-water kayakers, a rope was secured to the ORV. Due to the strong currents, attempts to retrieve the ORV failed. The ORV was secured along the island and will be removed when the water levels retreat.

DISTRICT 2

CO Mike Hammill was on patrol during the trout opener and observed two subjects fishing. When they saw the CO, they threw their fishing poles into the woods and began to walk away. The CO pursued and caught up to the suspicious subjects. Upon returning to the woods, CO Hammill located the two fishing poles along with two undersized trout. Neither of the two men had a fishing license. Tickets were issued, and the fish were seized.
CO Kevin Postma located an illegally baited turkey blind, and after working it for several days, he finally caught the individual hunting over the baited area. The subject showed a valid turkey kill tag and admitted that he knew it was against the law to hunt turkeys over bait. He took his ticket without complaint. Moments after the contact, the CO was speaking with other nearby turkey hunters who explained how they didn’t have any luck, but their friend had shot a turkey the previous day. This friend happened to be the subject to whom the CO had just issued a ticket for the illegal bait. The CO went back to the location and received a full confession about the untagged turkey.
CO Mike Hammill was on patrol when he observed fresh empty beer cans in the roadway. Later, he checked a group of subjects plinking with a .22 rifle and lighting gas on fire in the roadway. They were drinking the same kind of beer that he’d seen in the road earlier. He went back and retrieved the empties and then re-contacted the subjects and obtained a confession. Tickets were issued for litter.
CO John Wenzel arrested two individuals for spearing walleyed along the shore of Little Bay de Noc. Eight walleyes and two spears were seized.
Sgt. Darryl Shann contacted six subjects in an area prone to walleye spearing on the Ford River. One subject was holding a large walleye packed with snow. A ticket was issued, and the fish was seized.

DISTRICT 3

CO Andrea Erratt received a complaint about a teenage boy running through a yard, carrying a backpack and then later running back up the driveway and through the yard with a rifle. The complainant said the boy was running back toward the Charlevoix Elementary School. CO Erratt responded, talked to the complainant, walked through the woods, and talked to a neighbor who also saw two boys walking. CO Erratt located the father of one of the boys who said the three teenage boys were playing on the trails with BB guns. The dad said he was sleeping when they left and he could not say for sure that they had only BB guns. CO Erratt walked back to her patrol truck and talked to a sheriff’s deputy, who explained the school had been put on lockdown due to the nature of the complaint and proximity to the school. CO Erratt patrolled the area and walked the trails through the woods and dunes, and located the three boys who had two BB guns. The CO warned one juvenile for trespass; he apologized and said he understood how his lever-action BB gun could look like a rifle to someone not familiar with guns. CO Erratt telephoned all of the parents and explained what had been reported and that once contacted, their boys had been respectful and cooperative.
On a Thursday, CO Carl VanderWall received a complaint about a live bear in the bed of a pickup truck. COs VanderWall and Duane Budreau responded to Pellston and learned the subject had believed the bear was a road-kill and had picked it up while northbound on I-75 near West Branch. When he had gotten to Pellston to pick up his brother, the bear was observed sitting up in the bed of the truck. When the COs arrived, the bear was lying down and was lethargic. The subject was ticketed for illegally possessing a bear, and the bear was transferred to the CO’s truck. The bear then was transported to an undisclosed wooded location, in hopes it would fully recover. On Friday evening, COs Matt Theunick and Eric Bottorff responded to a complaint about a dead bear not far off a road. Prior to the CO’s arrival, the caller stated he observed a vehicle pull over and load the bear into a truck. A license plate number was not obtained. Later, near midnight on Friday, CO Andrea Erratt answered a complaint in which a subject stated he had picked up a dead bear from the location above and wanted to keep it. CO Erratt met the subject at his residence and explained it might have been possible if he would have called first, prior to picking up the bear. CO Erratt took the bear, and gave the subject a warning for possession of a road-killed bear without a permit. The bear later was identified as the same bear that had been picked up near West Branch the previous night.

DISTRICT 4

CO Mike Wells received information about large amounts of deer parts at an unoccupied residence. CO Wells contacted the former resident and was able to determine that several illegal deer were taken, with charges including taking deer without a license, loan/borrow a deer kill tag to another person, and taking an overlimit of deer. Tickets were issued to three subjects involved.
While checking for fishing activity at the Manistee Pier, CO Carla Soper watched as a bass boat neared the harbor from Lake Michigan and entered the Manistee channel on plane. The operator continued up the river, including past the Coast Guard station, creating a wake in a no-wake zone. CO Soper was able to contact the subject, who informed her that he was familiar with Florida boating regulations, but not Michigan boating laws. After further discussion, he stated that under these particular circumstances in Florida, he would have more than likely slowed down. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Carla Soper, of Manistee County, worked a boat patrol on the walleye/trout opening day on Manistee Lake and the Manistee channel. The first three anglers CO Soper contacted were fishing without licenses. All three were ticketed for the offense.
Following an investigation from last fall, CO Steve Converse, of Manistee County, served an arrest warrant on an individual for purchasing too many firearms deer kill tags, along with taking an overlimit of antlered deer. The subject took two spike bucks and one 7-point buck.
CO Steve Converse contacted two hunters with a blind set up on one side of a road and their turkey decoy on the other side. Just beyond their turkey decoy was another road. In addition to the unsafe backstop hunting location, one of the hunters did not have a valid turkey-hunting license. Enforcement action was taken.

DISTRICT 5

COs John Huspen and Chuck McPherson assisted Crawford County deputies and EMTs with a subject who had badly cut his face and neck with a chain saw while cutting wood in an area inaccessible by emergency vehicles. The subject lost a large amount of blood and had to be taken out of the woods on a backboard to an awaiting ambulance. Officers were informed the following day that the subject had cut his carotid artery and was recovering at the hospital.
CO Chris Bowen was contacted by CO Larn Strawn regarding a subject trespassing and taking a turkey in Isabella County. CO Bowen interviewed the subject, who lives in Roscommon County, and obtained a full confession to trespassing and taking a turkey. Officer Bowen seized the turkey and forwarded the information to CO Strawn for prosecution.
COs Brian Olsen and Phil Hudson, while checking a heavily fished walleye spot after dark, observed two subjects catching and keeping several walleyes. After a lengthy observation, the COs saw one of the subjects begin to leave with some of the fish. Contact was made, and it was discovered that one of the subjects was in possession of 12 walleyes. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Steve Lockwood was checking state land for turkey hunters when he observed a truck parked on the roadway with large bags of bird seed in the back. The CO was able to track the subjects deep into the woods, where they were hunting. CO Lockwood located the father/daughter team, who were using the bird seed to bait turkeys. Enforcement action was taken for hunting turkeys over bait.
CO Warren MacNeill found himself netting steelhead in a farm field after high water from all the rains flooded some area farm fields. As the high water receded, it left numerous steelhead without any way back to the river. CO MacNeill was able to net and return the steelhead to the river where they belonged.
COs Mark Papineau and Steve Lockwood received a report about a 15-year-old boy in full cardiac arrest on state land in Gladwin County. After a brief search of the area, officers Lockwood and Papineau, along with paramedics, located the subject and immediately began CPR. The boy and his father had been turkey hunting when the youth shot a turkey. A short time later, the boy collapsed to the ground and stopped breathing. The father immediately contacted 911 and began CPR. Despite best efforts, the boy was not able to be resuscitated.

DISTRICT 6

CO Bob Hobkirk received a call from a complainant who inquired about the ending time for turkey hunting. The complainant had observed a hunter sneak into a field toward some turkeys 10 minutes prior to the end of turkey hunting for the day. CO Hobkirk arrived in the area 35 minutes after hunting hours ended and heard the subject shoot four times at a turkey. The hunter was met at his vehicle by CO Hobkirk. He missed the turkey that he tried to shoot, but received a ticket for hunting turkeys after hours.
COs Phil Hudson and Brian Olson were on foot patrol along the Lake Huron shoreline when they contacted an angler in possession of 12 walleyes. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Ken Lowell checked anglers on the channels of a lake in Montcalm County, looking for fishing violations. One angler on the channel saw the CO and dropped his fishing pole and pulled out his cell phone. When asked for his fishing license, the angler acted like he was on an important phone call and began walking away. After a short walk, it was determined that he did not have an important call or a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.
While on his day off, Sgt. Tony Soave came upon a deer carcass with three leg-hold traps placed around it and several snares on runways going to the deer carcass. There were no tags on any of the snares, and it was two days before snaring season opened. Sgt. Soave went home and returned with wire cutters and removed all of the snares and leg-hold traps that also were untagged. While removing the snares, the trapper showed up and was ticketed for setting snares prior to the season, using untagged traps and snares, and trapping without a fur harvester’s license.
CO Joel Lundberg located a property with fresh tracks leading into it before turkey season began. CO Lundberg watched the property for activity and noted it was very active for the week leading up to the turkey season opener. CO Lundberg checked a turkey hunter on the property on the turkey opener and discovered the hunter was hunting over bait. A ticket was issued.
CO Larn R. Strawn was dispatched to a complaint of people trespassing and killing a turkey. After arriving at the complaint location, the CO contacted multiple witnesses and was given a license plate number. The CO canvassed the property, located the kill site, and recovered a spent shell. Investigative work revealed the hunter was from out of town. CO Strawn contacted CO Chris Bowen, who ultimately tracked down the hunter. CO Bowen recovered the turkey and obtained a confession regarding the violations. Enforcement action was taken.

DISTRICT 7

CO Mike McGee received a complaint about two subjects turkey hunting while trespassing. CO McGee was able to locate the subjects and issue them tickets for recreational trespass.
CO Mike Mshar responded to a complaint from the sheriff’s department about a subject illegally netting steelhead in a parking lot along the Rabbit River after the recent flooding. The subject was witnessed performing the illegal act and having his dog retrieve the fish. CO Mshar also had a complaint in the same area about three subjects spearing steelhead in the same parking lot. When contact was made, it was determined that one of the subjects had been arrested for related illegal fishing practices in the past, and one of the other subjects didn’t have a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Mike Mshar responded to a complaint about a subject operating his vehicle illegally off-road in the Allegan State Game Area. The subject was located and ticketed for operating illegally off-road and for destroying vegetation, including numerous small trees.
CO Mike Mshar came upon two teenagers operating their dirt bikes illegally in the Allegan SGA. Contact was made with the parents, who were ticketed for allowing juveniles to operate ORVs unsupervised, while a warning was given for the illegal operation. Both juveniles will be attending a local ORV safety class per CO Mshar’s request.

DISTRICT 8

CO Pete Purdy assisted a local deputy in searching the Lakelands Trail for two subjects reportedly seen shooting long guns on the trail. The two subjects were located and questioned about the incident. They said they were walking along the trail, target shooting, and took the officers to one of their target-shooting areas. The officers discovered broken glass bottles and plastic jugs that had been shot up and discarded, spent shotgun shells, empty shotgun shell boxes, and other trash left behind. Enforcement action was taken.
COs Derek Miller and Jason J. Smith contacted a group of anglers after watching them from shore for quite some time. One subject was issued a ticket for fishing without a license, and another subject stated that he was not fishing and that if they were watching, they would have known that. However, the COs told the subject they had been there for quite some time and that his story was not going to work. The subject also had six warrants out for his arrest. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Dan Bigger was called out on a complaint about a subject hunting from a raised platform blind with a firearm. CO Bigger was able to arrive at the complaint area within 15 minutes and observed several tom turkeys in the area where the subject was thought to be hunting. To ensure he didn’t interrupt a legal hunt, he found a location in a thick weeded area and remained there until the turkeys were gone. CO Bigger then observed a subject coming out of a ground blind and not a raised blind. The subject was contacted and was told that his ground blind was on Consumers Energy property. Further investigation revealed the subject was hunting with illegal shot for turkeys. The subject insisted that he had permission to hunt at this location. Follow up was conducted with Consumers Energy, and charges are now pending on both violations.
COs Shane Webster and Damon Owens were travelling to a complaint area along I-94 when they observed a vehicle approaching from behind them at a high rate of speed. The vehicle passed the patrol vehicles and began accelerating. CO Webster moved behind the vehicle and paced its speed at 87 mph in the 70 mph zone. The vehicle was stopped, and the occupant said he was in a hurry to use a restroom. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Shane Webster checked a township park and access site that is a popular fishing location. CO Webster observed two anglers fishing from the dock and also noted a woman and a child in the play area of the park near the launch. CO Webster parked his patrol vehicle and continued to observe the anglers for a few moments. Upon exiting his patrol vehicle and approaching the two subjects, CO Webster observed the anglers look in his direction and quickly yell to the woman and child in the play area. Soon after, the child came running to the dock and the angler handed the fishing pole to the child. CO Webster made contact and confirmed neither angler had a valid fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.

DISTRICT 9

CO Todd Szyska received a tip from CO Kris Kiel that he received information about a subject fishing in Lottivue Canals who had more than 100 crappies. After obtaining the information, CO Szyska responded and contacted two separate boaters fishing the canal off Lake St. Clair. The livewell of the second boat was loaded with crappies. When asked, the subject stated he had 20. It was obvious to CO Szyska he was well over that. In the end, the subject was in possession of 44 crappies and four sunfish for a total of 23 fish over his limit. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Ben Lasher responded to a Report-All-Poaching (RAP) complaint in Columbus Township regarding a subject who had taken a Canada goose out of season. The 18-year-old subject shot a Canada goose and had the goose breast meat in a freezer. The subject also had shot some grackles. All birds were taken with a .22 rifle. CO Lasher seized the goose and the breast meat. Enforcement action was taken for the Canada goose taken out of season.
CO Brandon Kieft was patrolling Paint Creek, which was closed to trout fishing, when he observed two subjects along the bank with fishing poles. When they noticed CO Kieft, they slipped behind a tree to avoid detection. CO Kieft contacted the two anglers, who admitted that they knew the Type 1 trout stream was still closed to fishing for another week and a half. While obtaining a fishing license from one of the subjects, CO Kieft noticed a DNR business card in his wallet. When asked, the subject pulled out CO Kieft's business card that he had saved from calling in a previous complaint. The subject had called in a complaint in 2012 for individuals illegally fishing on the same creek. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Brandon Kieft responded to a complaint about anglers fishing on Loon Lake in Waterford Township. The complainant stated that the anglers were "keeping everything they catch." CO Kieft conducted surveillance and was able to contact two vessels in violation of fishing laws. One angler was caught with an overlimit of panfish; the other angler was in possession of two largemouth bass during the closed season. Enforcement action was taken.

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