Illinois Cuffs & Collars – March 21st, 2014

Region I

A District 1 CPO followed up on a complaint of a hunter taking a deer during a closed season. The hunter had shot two deer in Henry County during the late antlerless season, however, Henry County was closed. Enforcement action was taken, and the deer was donated to the local food pantry.
A District 1 CPO issued multiple citations and written warnings to a Rock Falls man for setting illegal land set traps on the Hennepin Feeder Canal in Whiteside County. One of the untagged traps sprung on a black lab’s head that was being walked along the canal by its owner.
A District 1 CPO cited a Whiteside County woman for taking a wild turkey with a rifle without a permit. Her husband was cited for taking the turkey into possession.
While conducting snowmobile enforcement, a District 6 CPO stopped a snowmobiler and conducted an inspection. During the stop, the CPO detected the odor of alcohol from the operator’s breath. Subsequent standardized field sobriety tests were administered and probable cause was determined to exist for the charge of OUI. The operator was arrested and lodged at the Winnebago County jail.
A District 7 CPO checked ice fishermen for compliance at Snakeden Hollow State Fish and Wildlife Area, Victoria Pheasant Habitat Area, Buffalo Pheasant Habitat Area, and Forever Fields. All fishermen were properly licensed and obeyed posted catch limits. 
A District 7 CPO responded to Banner Marsh FWA in Peoria County to a complaint of two individuals who had driven a vehicle out onto the frozen ice of Wheel Lake. When contacted, the father and son had set up an ice house next to their running Ford Mustang and said they heard the crappies were biting. CPO asked about the barricade with “Wildlife Refuge – Area Closed” sign they moved at the boat ramp before driving onto the lake. Their response was, “we also saw a no boating sign and thought since we are not in a boat we would be legal.” Enforcement action was taken.
A District 6 CPO was waiting to turn left due to oncoming traffic in Starved Rock State Park. A driver behind the officer illegally passed on the left narrowly missing the oncoming traffic. The officer followed the vehicle noting three more traffic infractions. The vehicle was stopped, the driver was issued a citation and posted $120 bond.
A District 6 CPO patrolled LaSalle County for snowmobile infractions. He issued four citations for no insurance, two citations for no registration and seven written warnings for other violations.
A CPO in Henderson County investigated a complaint regarding the illegal taking of white-tailed deer in McDonough County. An individual attempted to cover up an illegal deer kill by purchasing tags after the fact. The subject then reported the deer. Appropriate enforcement action was taken.

Region II

A CPO handled a personal injury snowmobile accident in Will County. The operator ran into a street light pole and broke his arm.
A CPO handled a fatal snowmobile accident in Will County. A person was riding on the ice of the I&M canal frozen surface and struck a tree limb sticking out of the ice.
Two District 2 CPOs stopped a father and son who were riding a snowmobile in Johnsburg. The father smelled strongly of cannabis on his person and his breath. When questioned, the father turned over a bag of cannabis and a smoking pipe. The father was charged with OUI cannabis, possession of cannabis, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Several snowmobile enforcement details were conducted on the Chain O’ Lakes and Fox River by District 2 CPOs. Approximately 80 citations were issued for no registration, no insurance, no trail use sticker, and careless operation of a snowmobile.
While a District 2 CPO was explaining the insurance requirement to a snowmobile violator at the McHenry Dam, the violator pointed to a snowmobile traveling northbound that was rolling over as we spoke. He said “You should be taking care of guys like that instead of harassing guys like me.” The CPO gave him his ID back and went to check on the accident. The operator involved refused treatment and claimed to be uninjured. He received a citation for no proof of insurance on a snowmobile.
Three District 2 CPOs were on patrol on the Chain O’ Lakes enforcing snowmobile regulations. As they were completing a stop, one of the CPOs saw a snowmobile on its side and the operator lying on the ice. The CPOs arrived on scene and learned the operator lost control of his sled and rolled. The operator complained of chest pain and was confused on basic information like his date of birth. One of the CPOs drove to the nearest bar and called for an ambulance. Another CPO transported the operator to shore where he was transported to a hospital for chest pain and a possible concussion. The third CPO assisted on gathering information and removal of the operator’s snowmobile.

Region III

Two District 11 CPOs stopped two Cumberland County men for use or aid of a motor vehicle and loaded/uncased firearms in a motor vehicle in Cumberland County. The men were participating in a coyote hunting contest for prizes. Both men were issued citations.
A District 11 CPO cited a Charleston man for speeding in Clark County. A District 11 CPO cited a Douglas County man for over-limit of bluegills at Walnut Point State Park.
A District 11 CPO cited a Charleston man for driving around a barricade and becoming stuck in the snow in Fox Ridge State Park in Coles County.
A CPO and district sergeant were checking fishermen at the Clinton Lake spillway. While observing them from a distance they observed the fishermen attempting to snag fish. Upon approaching the fishermen they observed one male with a snagged fish and the other male attempted to set his pole down as though he had a baited hook. They were in possession of four snagged fish and were cited appropriately.

Region IV

A Brown County CPO received a complaint of a red-tailed hawk caught in a trap. The CPO released the hawk from the trap and took it to a rehabilitator. The hawk was caught in an illegally set trap. The trap had exposed bait placed near it. The illegally set trap did not have the required metal tag attached to the trap. The CPO was able to locate the trapper.
A Jersey County CPO observed a truck driving slowly on the wrong side of a rural road in Jersey County. After stopping in the roadway twice, the CPO initiated a traffic stop on the truck. The driver was found to be in possession of a loaded, uncased rifle and a loaded, uncased .40-caliber pistol. When questioned, the subject admitted he was coyote hunting.
A Greene County CPO conducted an investigation and obtained a confession from a hunter for archery deer hunting by aid of bait.
A Jersey County CPO received information of a buck unlawfully taken in Jersey County by a Pennsylvania resident without a firearm deer permit. With the assistance of the Pennsylvania Game Commission, an interview was conducted and the subject admitted to the violation. The buck was seized, and enforcement action is pending.
A Jersey County CPO investigated a theft complaint. After receiving information of several stolen goose decoys being used by hunters in Calhoun County, the CPO located the hunting area and discovered several of the reported stolen decoys. The investigation led the CPO to two suspects. Interviews were conducted and both suspects admitted to stealing the decoys from a private hunting area. Enforcement action is pending.
A Jersey County CPO stopped a vehicle for speeding in Pere Marquette State Park. The driver was found to have a suspended driver’s license and two passengers were found to be in possession of open alcohol.

Region V

A CPO in Pope County is working with the Missouri Fish and Game Department on an investigation involving a subject who unlawfully took two bucks in Illinois. Large 9- and 14-point bucks were discovered after the subject’s phone was seized during another wildlife investigation. Several charges are pending. The same CPO cited a subject for hunting deer without a valid permit during the last weekend of the archery season in Pope County.
A CPO investigated a road hunting complaint called in by a motorist traveling in Saline County. The hunter allegedly shot at a flock of turkeys with a pistol from the passenger compartment of his truck. The hunter/driver was a security guard on his way to work. The caller gave a detailed description of the incident, vehicle, plate and driver. The hunter claims to have been trying to scare off poachers who were stalking the turkeys in the woods. The hunter was cited for shooting from a road way, transporting an uncased loaded firearm and attempt to take turkey out of season. Several written warnings issued as well.
A CPO was notified of two motorboats – one runabout and one houseboat – which sank while docked at Kinkaid Marina. The runabout is completely sunk with just the tip of the bow sticking through the ice, while the houseboat partially sunk and was able to be pumped out and righted. In each instance, it appears the severe cold weather southern Illinois has experienced has caused such severe icing that the hulls on these vessels failed, causing the sinking.
A CPO assisted SIU police on a waterfowl case. SIU Police Department contacted the CPO about two students who had caught a mallard drake at the campus lake and had killed it in front of other students. The CPO assisted in retrieving the duck carcass and breast meat from the students. Although the students did not have hunting licenses or waterfowl stamps, SIU Police Department decided to charge the two students with animal cruelty and student conduct charges due to the nature of the offense. They were issued written warnings for the no license or stamps due to the other charges being brought against them.
A CPO responded to a complaint of goose hunter’s shot peppering a residence. The goose pit has been hunted for over a decade and was over 300 yards from the residence. The shots into a strong wind resulted in the peppering of the residence. The owner was advised of the situation and to not shoot into the direction of the home at the request of the complainant. No other violations were noted.
A CPO checked numerous waterfowl hunters. Assistance was given to one group that had engine trouble with their boat motor while breaking through an iced over lake. One hunter was issued a written warning for no hunting license in his possession.
A CPO responded to a report of hunters peppering an Air Evac parking lot. The caller just wanted the hunters to be made aware that the shot carried to the facility. The hunters were advised. No other violations were noted.
A CPO was assisted by ISP K9 and Vienna City officers in a search of a missing juvenile and companion from Minnesota. Their vehicle was found near the Tunnel Hill State Trail, unlocked, with some camping equipment in the car. They were not located that night but found a couple of days later. The juvenile was returned to her parents.
A CPO responded to a hunting without permission complaint in Johnson County. He located the coon hunters and followed them before making contact. They had been warned by the landowner to stay off his property, but returned.
A CPO is investigating a complaint about goose hunters shooting after hours in Perry County. A CPO is investigating a hunter for falsification of records violation. A CPO located multiple illegal traps in a creek. The traps are under observation for activity.
While patrolling a complaint area for coyote hunters, a Jefferson County man was stopped and arrested for driving with a revoked license, no insurance, and no valid registration. The same CPO cited a Kentucky goose hunter for not having a state waterfowl stamp.
In Williamson County court, two men (a father and son) entered a plea agreement from a 2011 case where a CPO had arrested the two subjects for numerous wildlife violations. The violations in this case involved hunting by use of a motor vehicle and lights of that vehicle, hunting deer at night from a roadway, loaded uncased guns, open alcohol, possession of a firearm by a felon and several others. The two men each were found guilty of hunting by use of a vehicle/spotlighting and hunting deer during illegal hours.

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