Pennsylvania Cuffs & Collars – June 6th, 2014

From the Game Commission

• Erie County WCO Darin L. Clark investigated a report of an individual harvesting a turkey on May 1, two days before the season opened. The individual claimed the bird was harvested in New York, where the season opened that day. The suspect did not have a New York license. Charges are pending.
• Jefferson County WCO Andrew D. Troutman reports that numerous littering violations are under investigation. In one case, before any questions were asked, the defendant blurted out that she threw the litter out of the car.
• Lawrence County WCO Byron D. Gibbs reports charges are pending against several people operating motorized vehicles on Hunter Access properties.
• Lawrence County WCO Byron D. Gibbs reports that a deer was shot by a fisherman in Lawrence County, on Stoughton Road, about a half-mile below Route 108. Though this deer exhibited symptoms of having some form of wildlife disease, it was not authorized to be killed. Furthermore, the deer was shot in the head so it was not able to be tested. The suspect that killed this deer is reported to live near the location of the incident. Anyone with information is asked to call the TIP Hotline at 1-888-PGC-8001, or fill out a TIP Report form found on the PGC website.
• Warren County WCO Jason R. Amory said ATVs continue to be a problem on the Allegheny National Forest, state game lands and lands under control of the Game Commission. A Tidioute man and a Bear Lake woman were recently cited for control of property violations stemming from unlawful and unsafe operation of an ATV on an area where such activity is restricted. Also, the pair were cited for lack of registration, lack of insurance and failure to wear a protective helmet.

From the Game Commission

• Armstrong County WCO Rod Burns officers are investigating numerous dumping sites, and charges are being filed.
• Armstrong County WCO Rod Burns investigated an individual for killing a deer on the night of the Super Bowl. “I spoke with the young man about the incident and explained all the consequences of killing deer out of season and that charges build on each other and can reach up to a felony. This person confessed to shooting the deer and said how “stupid” it had been to just shoot the deer and leave it lay near a house,” he said. “Three weeks later I received information that this same guy, along with two others, shot another deer and now summary charges have been filed against the two newcomers while the original violator has a misdemeanor and several summaries to answer for.”
• Fayette and Westmoreland counties WCO Jason Farabaugh reports illegal off-roading with ATVs and four-wheel-drive vehicles has been an ongoing problem on several cooperative-access properties. The Foley and the Hanson Aggregates properties in the Connellsville area have been receiving the most illegal activity.
• Greene County WCO Michael Greiner reports that nine citations were filed against individuals for possessing alcoholic beverages on State Game Land 302 on the night before the opening day of trout season. In addition, an individual was cited for disorderly conduct and camping on state game lands.
• Greene County WCO Michael Greiner reports that six citations were filed against two individuals in Springhill Township for multiple trapping violations, including having traps set as late as the beginning of April. 
• Greene County WCO Michael Greiner reports that three citations were filed for three individuals who participated in shooting a deer and then dumped the carcass behind the Waynesburg Stockyards in Franklin Township.
• Washington and Allegheny counties WCO Chris Bergman reports that an individual enrolled in the Hunter Access Program has reported that dirt bikes and ATVs have been driving through planted cornfields.
• Westmoreland County WCO Matt Lucas reports that his deputy WCOs investigated trash dumped on State Game Land 296. They identified to whom the trash belonged, and charges are pending with fines up to $500.
• Westmoreland County WCO Matt Lucas reports two individuals failed to properly tag their spring gobblers on the opening day. Each faces fines up to $200.

From the Game Commission

• Tioga County WCO Rodney Mee reports that two Wellsboro men were shooting songbirds with pellet rifles. They were charged with unlawfully killing the birds and for using unlawful devices to hunt with. One of the men was also charged with purchasing a hunting license while on revocation.
• Clearfield County WCO Mark Gritzer reports that an Osceola Mills resident pleaded guilty to unlawfully killing a wild turkey. He was cited under the provision of liability for action of others because his 11-year-old son used the turkey as a target. A replacement fee of $300 was assessed along with the fine.
• Lycoming County WCO Kristoffer Krebs reported that a Muncy man pleaded guilty to a charge stemming from an incident involving the unlawful killing of a rabbit. The defendant was operating a vehicle and allowed his passenger to shoot and kill a rabbit through the use of the vehicle’s headlights. The defendant was ordered to pay a fine of $1,350 and now faces the loss of his hunting and furtaking privileges.
• WCO Dan Murray, Centre and Clinton counties, reports that two people were recently found guilty of dumping a television on lands open to public hunting in Howard Township, Centre County.
From the Fish & Boat Commission
• Greene County Waterways Conservation officers conducted a detail on Browns Creek on April 30, focusing on areas of listed as Approved Trout Waters during a stocking event. Multiple violations were handled during the eight-hour operation. Violations were  daily creel limit violations, littering and possession/display of license.
• Fayette County officers conducted an undercover trout detail May 15 on Dunlap Creek. Two anglers were cited for keeping over their limit of trout, and two other anglers were cited for littering.

From the Fish & Boat Commission

• Clinton County WCO Anthony Beers and Clearfield County DWCO Dave Twoey responded to a boat accident on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River in Clearfield County that resulted in a missing 20-year-old male. Search efforts over the next three days involved several other WCOs from Cameron, Clearfield and Centre counties, but ultimately had to be called off due to bad weather and rising water. The incident is under investigation.
• Lycoming County WCO Emmett Kyler responded to several water rescues on the West Branch of the Susquehanna. One of the rescues involved a male kayaker whose sister was rescued earlier in the day. He had been warned not to attempt to recover his sister’s kayak which was still hung up on debris in the river, but he disregarded the warning. He now faces misdemeanor charges of reckless and negligent operation of a watercraft after he launched his boat and needed to be rescued after getting into trouble.

From the Game Commission

• Adams County WCO Cory M. Ammerman reports that an individual was apprehended while causing destruction to a farmer’s field. The individual was operating his vehicle and attempting to slide around in the field when he got stuck. He is facing misdemeanor charges for destruction of agricultural lands and several game law violations since the area is open to public hunting.
• Perry County WCO Kevin Anderson reported that a Newport man was found guilty of several waterfowl violations that occurred in February. An investigation began after receiving information about someone shooting ducks out of season and within a safety zone. Boot-print evidence and witness interviews led to a defendant, who was charged and found guilty at a summary trial. The defendant was ordered to pay fines and will be facing a license revocation.
• Bedford County WCO Jeremy Coughenour reports that a Fishertown man pleaded guilty to charges of unlawful killing or taking of big game. The man shot and killed a male turkey the last week of March in Napier Township. Information obtained from the public was instrumental in the case. He was assessed $1,000 in fines and an additional $500 toward the T.I.P. reward fund.
• Adams County WCO Darren J. David reports that a man was intentionally baiting bears in his backyard. The bears were causing a nuisance and damage to surrounding properties. Trash from his activities was found scattered around the adjacent state forest land. When confronted, he expressed no concern for his neighbors, and stated he would not clean up the bait. WCO David set a bear trap in one neighbor’s yard, and on the second night, a 300-pound male bear was captured. It was taken to another county and released. Charges are pending.
• York County WCO Kyle Jury reported that Game Commission officers in northern York County are seeking information on a 5-year-old mentored youth hunter who may have mistakenly shot two turkeys on April 26 while hunting on State Game Land 243 in Franklintown. Jury received reports with limited information that the boy’s father told him that shooting two birds was a “big secret” and not to tell anyone. All the pair would have had to do was report the mistake kill within 24 hours of when the birds were shot. Anyone who may have information is asked to contact the Southcentral Regional Office at 814-643-1831.  
• Snyder County WCO Harold Malehorn filed charges on four juveniles for spotlighting after 11 p.m. and spotlighting while in possession of a firearm. There was a .243 caliber rifle and a .17 caliber rifle in the vehicle. 
• York County WCO Shawn Musser reports that a case involving four individuals who had involvement with illegally killing and hiding a buck last season have all been convicted. Fines have reached a total of $7,862.50 for the four men. Two of the men chose to have a hearing before a judge and were found guilty of three charges each, including unlawful taking of big game, making false reports and interfering with officers duties. The other two pleaded guilty to charges.

From the Fish & Boat Commission

• Huntingdon County Waterways Conservation Officer Anthony Quarracino recently facilitated a covert special enforcement detail on Great Trough Creek in concert with an inseason trout stocking. Utilizing unmarked vehicles and concealed surveillance, plain clothes officers from both the Fish & Boat and Game commissions addressed multiple individuals for exceeding the daily creel limit of trout and failing to have a current fishing license or trout stamp. Additionally, two subjects were apprehended for possession/use of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia, while a third individual was cited for underage drinking. Lastly, officers deferred the prosecution of an individual for possession of alcohol and an open container in a motor vehicle to the DCNR Bureau of State Parks.
• Lebanon County Waterways Conservation Officer Doug Deppen observed an adult female walking on SR 934 almost get struck by a passing vehicle during a late-night patrol. Deppen made contact with this individual who stated that she was simply walking home to a location nearly 12 miles away.  Ascertaining that this woman was highly intoxicated, Deppen assumed custodial detention and turned her over to the State Police who cited her for public drunkenness and coordinated her return home.
• Dauphin County Waterways Conservation Officer Doug Deppen stopped a vehicle being operated in a grossly reckless and aggressive manner on Interstate 83. The operator exhibited multiple symptoms of alcohol impairment and was arrested for driving under the influence.

From the Game Commission

• Chester County WCO Scott Frederick and Berks County WCO Eric Anderson conducted a foot patrol of SGL 43 and were able to observe, apprehend and charge two adult women for use and possession of controlled substance on state  game lands. 
• Chester County WCO Scott Frederick assisted Lancaster County WCO Greg Graham in recovering tire-impression evidence from Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area, where two individuals caused damage by four-wheeling with their vehicles. Charges are pending.
• Chester County WCO Scott Frederick responded to a complaint of several individuals misusing the rifle range at SGL 43. Upon arrival, Frederick was able to see one individual rapidly shooting off 20-plus rounds from an AR-style rifle. The individual said he failed to read the regulations posted at several locations in the range’s parking area and on the range itself. Charges are pending in district court.
• Dauphin County WCO Derek Daly recently filed charges for hunting over bait and attempting to unlawfully take a wild turkey. The individual was hunting from a ground blind over a pile of corn.
• Dauphin County WCO Derek Daly filed charges on an individual that he and DWCO John Mike found hunting in a cemetery opening day of spring turkey season. The individual had his decoy set up near a headstone.
• Lancaster County WCO Greg Graham reports that a deer was poached at night near Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area. Officers were on patrol in the area when it was reported and responded to the scene within minutes but were unable to locate the responsible party.
• Lancaster County WCO Greg Graham recently prosecuted several individuals for littering, unlawful taking out of season, safety-zone violations, possession of alcoholic beverages, and possession of protected wildlife.
• Lebanon County WCO Brian Sheetz reports that two individuals have been charged for drug offenses on SGL 145 at Dinosaur Rock. They were smoking synthetic marijuana, and possessed the drug as well as paraphernalia. Also, an individual has been charged for drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana on SGL 211 at the Cold Springs parking lot.
• Lebanon County WCO Brian Sheetz reports that a group of people have been cutting mountain bike and horseback-riding trails on SGL 145. All the trails have been blocked off, and signs have been posted.
• Montgomery County WCO Raymond Madden is conducting investigations into numerous complaints of dumping on SGL 234 in Limerick and in Linfield. Multiple piles of brush, rock and grass clippings, along with pieces of cut-up trees have been dumped.
From the Fish & Boat Commission
• Chester County WCO Robert Bonney and DWCO Matt Raetsch arrested a 21-year-old male from Douglassville for BUI on Marsh Creek Lake in Chester County on May 19. The subject was arrested after the officers determined he was operating the boat while under the influence of a controlled substance, and evidence of marijuana use was found on board.
• Delaware County PF&BC officers conducted a law enforcement detail targeting illegal activities by persons fishing for striped bass in the Delaware River in the vicinity of the Philadelphia airport on May 4. Both uniformed and plain clothes officers participated in the detail, and 12 citations were issued to defendants for violations including possession of illegal striped bass, littering and fishing without a license.

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