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

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New York Cuffs & Collars – July 24th, 2015

Pesticides while fishing
(Suffolk County)

ECOs Chris DeRose and Matt Krug were on foot patrol at Southard’s Pond in the town of Babylon where they observed two males fishing the south end of the pond. Upon request, neither individual could produce a freshwater fishing license. The officers escorted both individuals to the entrance of the park. While they were writing summonses for the fishing license violations, the officers observed a landscaper with a backpack sprayer applying a pesticide to the property adjacent to the park entrance. The workers then packed their truck and pulled away from the curb, attempting to drive past the officers. DeRose approached the vehicle and advised the driver that warning markers were not placed at the property. When DeRose requested the driver’s license, the driver stated he did not have one. After the landscaper was checked for pesticide compliance, the driver was issued a ticket for failure to place warning markers at the treated property and another for driving without a license. 

The air we breathe
(Albany County)

While ECO Kurt Swan and Region 4 Air Engineer Gary McPherson were checking equipment and getting ready for a Heavy Duty Diesel Vehicle (HDDV) detail at the Port of Albany, a passerby stopped and told them that a subject was down the street in the park releasing freon into the air from some old air conditioners that were being scrapped. Swan and McPherson responded immediately to the park and found the subject to be doing just that. The individual was ticketed and given options for legally scrapping air conditioners. The subject was also referred to the EPA for the violation. The HDDV detail was a success, as well.

Just cleaning up
(Schoharie County)

ECO Mike Terrell was contacted by Schoharie County officials for an ongoing illegal burn in the town of Carlisle. Terrell met fire chief Scott Hotaling on the scene, where a subject had set a mobile home on fire. After interviewing the subject, it was determined that he had set the fire on purpose to clean up the property. The subject was issued two tickets for unlawful disposal of solid waste and illegal burning of materials in an open fire. The case was pending in Carlisle Town Court.

Complainant protects West Brook
(Monroe County)

ECO Kevin Thomas responded to a discharge complaint in the town of Pittsford. It appeared that a new pool was being constructed and the pool company decided to put the residual water/cement mixture into West Brook, which is a protected trout stream. The complainant had taken pictures to show the turbidity change in the water and the hose pumping it out. Thomas contacted the company, which said they had just pumped out residual rain water into the stream. After being confronted with the pictures, the company saw the color change and agreed it was not acceptable. Tickets were issued for discharge without a permit and disturbing a protected trout stream. 

Emerald ash borer
(Ulster County)

On several days during the month of July last year, the state Department of Agriculture and Markets requested DEC Division of Law Enforcement assistance in securing an infested tree service site. The tree service had knowingly been transporting ash, which was infested with emerald ash borer. At the request of Ag and Markets, DEC’s Division of Lands and Forests came to the site to chip the ash trees to prevent further infestation. ECOs Josh Sulkey, Bob Hodor and Myles Schillinger were at the site to provide security. 

Dam destruction
(Steuben County) 

DEC’s Region 8 Bureau of Habitat received a complaint of a beaver dam being removed from Neil’s Creek, a protected trout stream/protected freshwater wetland. The information was forwarded to ECO Dustin Oliver for a follow-up investigation. That afternoon Oliver was able to inspect the violation, where it was obvious heavy equipment had been used in the stream to completely remove a beaver dam that sustained the protected wetland, which was now reduced to a mud flat with a small stream channel. Herons and shore birds could be seen taking full advantage of an easy meal as fish and other prey species were condensed into small pools. After several days of inquiry, Oliver was able to identify the owner of a neighboring farm, who admitted to tearing out the dam, stating it caused higher water levels that damaged his property. He was given an administrative ticket for disturbing a protected stream. Penalties and any remediation were to be handled through DEC’s Region 8 Bureau of Habitat. 

Operation Dry Water
(Orange County) 

ECOs Greg Maneeley and Chris Lattimer were among the officers assigned to Operation Dry Water. The statewide enforcement detail was conducted and intended to enforce the boating and navigation laws, specifically ensuring compliance with the boating while intoxicated statutes. The two officers patrolled Greenwood Lake and checked numerous boats for environmental conservation law violations, as well as performing safety checks on numerous recreational vessels. The officers worked in conjunction with U.S. Coast Guard auxiliary boats and the Greenwood Lake Police Department and participated in the annual blessing of the fleet.

Boating while intoxicated
(Seneca County)

ECOs Josh Crain and Scott Angotti were on boat patrol on Cayuga Lake for fishing and navigation law enforcement. As it neared dark, Crain spotted a boat racing up and down the channel without displaying its required navigational lights. The officers approached the vessel as it slowed and spoke to the operator, who smelled distinctly of alcohol. The operator admitted to drinking and there were many open containers of alcohol in the vessel. The operator was put through the battery of field sobriety tests on the water and failed to perform the tests as directed. The subject was arrested for boating while intoxicated, failing to display navigation lights after dark and operating an unregistered vessel. The subject was taken to Seneca Falls Police Department and submitted to a breathalyzer test, which revealed .10% blood alcohol content almost two full hours after he was stopped. Officers patrol the waterways all year long enforcing the fish and wildlife and navigation laws to keep New York safe for all to enjoy.

Spearheading an investigation
(Suffolk County)

ECOs Chris DeRose and Matt Krug were on a plainclothes boat patrol outside the Fire Island inlet when they received a call from ECO Ron Gross who had gotten a tip regarding possible poaching of blackfish by spear fishermen under the Robert Moses Bridge. DeRose and Krug responded, observing a vessel with a dive flag up and three male subjects spearfishing. The ECOs watched from a distance and could see two men in the water handing up dark-colored fish to the male operating the vessel. They conducted a vessel stop and inquired about fish on board. Initially the men responded that they had striped bass, removing a striped bass of legal length from a white cooler. The officers could see additional dark fish in the cooler when it was opened. DeRose then boarded the vessel and inquired about additional fish, and was told they that they had “some blackfish.” DeRose opened the cooler and discovered multiple fish in addition to the legal striped bass shown, including one undersized striped bass and 11 out-of-season blackfish. Each individual was issued three citations for possessing undersized striped bass, possessing blackfish out of season, and taking striped bass by means other than angling or with hand spear.

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