Michigan Cuffs & Collars – August 28th, 2015


CO Elton Luce responded to an incident involving the potential drowning situation of an overturned kayaker, who had been adrift in cold weather conditions for over four hours. The air temperature on this day was in the low 60s with 20-plus-mph winds. CO Luce recovered the kayaker from the overturned kayak with little time to spare. The subject received treatment for hypothermia by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) on shore.

CO Mark Leadman and PCO Shannon Kritz contacted a group of anglers on a trophy fishing lake closed to the use of live bait. Upon investigation, live bait was found in the possession of one of the anglers contacted. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Mark Leadman and PCO Shannon Kritz were checking anglers on the Chocolay River when they contacted one angler who hadn’t purchased a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.

PCO Bradley Silorey and CO Marvin Gerlach contacted two subjects operating personal watercraft (PWCs) on the Menominee River. Both machines had expired registrations. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Brian Bacon and PCO Chris Lynch conducted a marine patrol on the Groveland Mine Pond system. They observed a woman and small child fishing out of a kayak and proceeded to conduct a check of the two. The COs found the child had a personal flotation device (PFD) but the adult did not. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Dennis Gast worked a mid-week marine patrol on Portage Lake with heavy activity due to the warm weather. Contact was made with several PWC operators playing in the cool water. Officer Gast stopped one individual for operating a PWC without a life jacket. Enforcement action was taken.

During a mid-week patrol on the Portage waterway, CO Dennis Gast contacted two individuals kayaking. Neither paddler possessed a life jacket. Another individual who was checked was fishing without a license. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Jared Ferguson and Jason Wicklund were on patrol when a Michigan State Police (MSP) trooper called for backup regarding a neighbor dispute. The COs responded and found two neighbors who were allegedly firing high-powered rifles at each other over a noise complaint. The officers were able to calm the high tensions between the two parties, who went their separate ways.


CO Jon Busken was returning from his patrol at approximately 1 a.m. when he observed two sets of ORV headlights coming up a county road. Contact was made with the operators, who were operating without helmets and riding double. The operators stated that they had been abiding by the law on an earlier ride but did not expect to see law enforcement at this time of night. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Jon Busken contacted a group of ORV operators who were riding double and operating without current ORV registrations. The lead operator was quick to point out that riding double and operating without a current ORV registration was legal on private property. The officer was quick to point out that they were not on private property. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Jon Busken, Brett Gustafson, and PCO Ethan Gainforth attended a formal hearing on a ticket written for the offense of disregarding a stop sign. The defendant was found responsible for the civil infraction, and the court reduced the fine by $35. The officers spoke to the defendant while leaving the court room. While happy to have his fine reduced by $35, he was frustrated by the fact that he had taken the day off from work, and spent $200 in gas and $900 on an attorney. He had a poor driving record and was hoping to avoid further points.

COs Jon Busken and Robert Watson attended the Hunter Education Instructor Academy. The officers learned new classroom and range techniques. They also were able to network with many other instructors.


COs Andrea Erratt and Duane Budreau worked the Boyne Thunder off-shore boat race on Lake Charlevoix and Lake Michigan. Officers ran radar, making sure all race boats were abiding by speed limits on Lake Charlevoix. Conditions were good for racing, and the event took place with no incidents.

After a lengthy investigation, CO Andrea Erratt reports getting a warrant issued for a subject who had been running an illegal charter operation in Charlevoix County.

CO Eric Bottorff and PCO Ben McAteer are investigating two separate complaints about dogs being caught in traps and where one dog was killed. The investigation continues.

While utilizing quad-runners, COs Kelly Ross, Mark Depew, and PCO Craig Neal issued several tickets for ORVers operating in closed areas and for careless operation.

CO Mark Depew was first on the scene at a motorcycle versus car personal injury accident. The motorcyclist, with his girlfriend on back, did a wheelie and side-swiped a car. CO Depew administered first aid prior to EMS arrival.

After being passed by two dirt bikes on an ORV route, Sgt. Greg Drogowski and PCO Ben McAteer observed both had expired ORV licenses. After getting turned around and following the ORVers, it was apparent neither wanted to be contacted, as they proceeded down the narrow trail and curves at a high speed. Upon finally catching up to and stopping them, the ORVers admitted they knew their ORV licenses were expired. Tickets for careless operation and expired ORV licenses were issued.


CO Brian Brosky was on ORV patrol in Lake County when he observed a large group of ORVers in a closed area, stopped at the base of a hill climb. As CO Brosky approached, one subject took off on a four-wheeler and climbed the hill while the rest of the group remained at the bottom, cheering him on. When the operator came back to the bottom, he immediately took off down a roadway. CO Brosky followed him and eventually stopped him a mile down the road. The operator of the ORV advised that he was stuck riding on a “slow machine” all day and was finally allowed to drive one of the “fast quads.” He said he was taking the opportunity to “open it up and test it out.” Enforcement action was taken.

CO Brian Brosky was working an area in Lake County when he encountered two ORVers operating illegally. The CO stopped the operators and questioned them as to why they were operating through a river, a wetland area, and closed state land, and they replied, “Because it wasn’t posted.” When CO Brosky advised them of the violations, they stated that the CO should spend more time posting the closed areas. CO Brosky informed them that all the pertinent information is contained within DNR ORV publications; enforcement action was taken.

CO Brian Brosky was working a routine patrol in Lake County when he encountered an ORVer operating illegally in a closed area. The CO asked the operator if he was aware of the state laws, and the operator agitatedly replied that he was from Georgia. The operator then advised that they can operate anywhere in Georgia, without restrictions. CO Brosky then asked him if he was lost, to which the Georgia man replied, “No.” CO Brosky and the subject both agreed that they were in Michigan, and enforcement action was taken.

COs Steve Converse and PCO Ethan Mapes checked a fishing vessel on Lake Michigan near Manistee. While speaking to the anglers aboard, the owner of the vessel was boastful about the “new boat” that he recently acquired. While CO Converse checked their fishing licenses, PCO Mapes looked at the registration sticker displayed on the vessel and discovered it was two years old. The COs then asked the owner for his current registration, and he advised that he thought he had 30 days to transfer it to his name. He also advised that he didn’t have enough money to pay for the taxes or fees associated with transferring and registering it. The COs explained otherwise, and enforcement action was taken.

While working a shift on Muskegon River in Newaygo County, CO Steve Converse came around a corner on the river and smelled the strong odor or marijuana. The CO could see several subjects on shore, one of whom was obviously trying to hide something upon realizing the CO was a law enforcement officer. CO Converse pulled over to the group to investigate and found illegal possession of marijuana. The CO also discovered the subjects had been fishing and were in possession of two undersized trout. Enforcement action was taken.


CO Phil Hudson was patrolling the Saginaw Bay shoreline recently when he encountered a subject operating a PWC with expired registration. The subject explained that he had purchased the PWC over a year ago and did not bother to transfer the registration. He further explained that he had not seen an officer on the water in over 10 years and thought that he would be safe from the law if he stayed close to shore. CO Hudson explained the importance of the registration requirements. A ticket was issued for operating on an expired registration, and a warning was given for not transferring the registration.

CO Jason McCullough and PCO Josh Wright recently were on marine patrol on a lake in Clare County when they were ‘buzzed’ by a PWC. The officers were able to catch up to the youthful operator and discovered she did not have the required boater safety certificate. The officers were able to educate the youth on safe operation rules and the requirement needed to operate the PWC.

COs Jason McCullough, Steve Lockwood, PCO Josh Wright, and Sgt. Jon Wood recently conducted a late-night marine group patrol on Wixom Lake in Gladwin County. After 1 a.m., the officers stopped a vessel racing across the lake without the required navigational lights. The operator and his passenger appeared startled to see law enforcement on the water during the late hours. A subsequent investigation led to the male operator being arrested for operating under the influence of alcohol. The subject was lodged in the Gladwin County jail.

CO Brian Olsen and PCO James Zellinger conducted a traffic stop of an ORV that was displaying an expired ORV license. When the officers contacted the operator, he indicated that he knew his ORV license was expired and that he also didn’t have a valid operator’s license. While obtaining the subject’s information, the officers also detected the odor of intoxicants on his breath. PCO Zellinger conducted field sobriety tests and administered a preliminary breath test (PBT) on the operator. He was arrested for operating on a suspended driver’s license, and warrants will be sought for operating while impaired.


CO Joshua Wright and PCO Joshua Jackson observed an ORV with two passengers being driven on the road. The ORV was stopped, and it was found that the operator was suspended, did not have an ORV license, and was in violation of local ordinances as far as speed and roadway use. Enforcement action was taken.

While working marine patrol on Big Whitefish Lake in Montcalm County, CO Ken Lowell located a boat with expired registration. When the CO made contact, he discovered that the operator also had a limit of bass, as well. The only problem was that some of the bass were undersized. Enforcement action was taken.

Several area fire departments were called to a structure fire in Saginaw County. Upon arrival they were met by a landowner who initially denied them entry because he was burning down a barn and did not want them to put it out. The firefighters were able to gain entry onto the property and extinguished the fire. CO Dan Lee was called to assist with follow-up. The barn contained old tractor tires, paint cans, and had a shingled roof. The farmer already had a house on the property removed but did not want to pay for the barn to be removed, as well. The cost of fire suppression totaled $12,000. Enforcement action is being taken.

While checking anglers at a state boat launch, CO Kyle Bucholtz was contacted by a concerned citizen who observed an older subject fall on nearby rocks. Upon approaching the subject, CO Bucholtz observed injuries to the subject’s arm and learned he had been suffering from recent unrelated medical issues. CO Bucholtz called for medical assistance and assisted the subject until an ambulance arrived. CO Bucholtz then escorted a family member to the local hospital, where the subject was treated for minor injuries. The injured subject told CO Bucholtz he was in the area to remove stones from the shore.


COs Mike Mshar and Chuck Towns dealt with several incidents while traveling through Holland State Park. The first incident involved an irate 15-year-old pregnant female. The juvenile was acting aggressively toward others and using abusive language. The officers escorted the juvenile from the park and turned her over to her mother. The second incident involved the officers being flagged down by a distraught subject advising that a 12-year-old boy was missing and was last had been seen in the water off the Holland beach. The COs activated the park’s missing person network and assisted park personnel in searching for the lost child. The child was located soon after on the beach, unharmed.

CO Mike Mshar conducted several patrols targeting boating and fishing activity on the Kalamazoo River. During the patrols, several tickets were issued for failing to provide PFDs, violating slow-no wake rules, and fishing without licenses. One subject was contacted who was in possession of an undersized smallmouth bass on a stringer. The angler stated he only put the fish on the stringer so he would not keep catching it and intended to let the fish go when he left. The fish was released, and enforcement action was taken.

CO Brad Brewer and PCO Christopher Maher responded to a complaint from a veterinarian who had taken in a deer with a broken leg from a woman who had removed it from the wild. Due to the injuries, the deer had to be euthanized. The COs followed up with the woman and learned that she had taken the deer from the wild approximately eight weeks before the incident. The woman was issued a ticket for removing the deer from the wild.

PCO Andrew Monnich and CO Greg Patten followed up on a complaint from employees at the Muskegon SGA. They found a treestand that had been up since last fall. The treestand owner said he was sick last fall and didn’t check on it this spring because he thought that it had probably had been stolen. Enforcement action was taken.

While checking anglers on the Grand Haven pier, PCO Andrew Monnich and CO Greg Patten checked a subject who did not have a license on his person. The subject gave CO Patten a name and date of birth, which came back with no record. The subject said that he had his license in his car and went back to get the license. The fishing license was issued to his wife, which matched the information he had given to the officers earlier. After they obtained his correct name and date of birth, the subject said he was using his wife’s license to fish. Enforcement action was taken. 


Sgt. Dan Bigger and CO Pete Purdy worked a marine patrol on the Bruin Lake chain to address concerns of high-speed boating in the no-wake areas. The complainant thought the signs had been removed. Upon investigating the area, the signs were still there and no observation of high-speed operation was noted. The complainant and others on the lake chain were appreciative of the enforcement efforts.

Sgt. Dan Bigger and PCO Hugh McMath followed up on a complaint in Shiawassee County about a deer the complainant thought may have died from a disease. Upon arriving on scene, Sgt. Bigger observed the antlerless whitetail deer and noted two patches of hair missing on the right side. He also noted a break in the right rear leg. The hairless patches contained a small amount of dirt and gravel, and the deer was determined to be a roadkill.

Sgt. Dan Bigger and PCO Hugh McMath followed up on a complaint in Shiawassee County about a tree that had been cut down, blocking a path to the Mill Pond, and preventing angler access. Upon arrival to the complaint, “no trespassing” signs were noted. The property was determined to be private, and the owner had dropped the tree across the path that had been used for years to access the waterfront. No violation was found.

While patrolling the Portage Lake chain, CO Rich Nickols and PCO Hugh McMath contacted a boat after sunset with an adult and juvenile fishing. The boat had no navigational lights, the registration was expired, and the adult had no fishing license. The officers followed the boat back to the dock, where enforcement action was taken.

CO Shane Webster and PCO Sam Schluckbier encountered an ORVer operating on a public roadway and made a stop of the vehicle. The operator was not wearing eye protection and the ORV did not have an ORV permit. The operator stated he had been riding on property that he had permission on during the day, and on the way home he decided to pull his vehicle over and test the machine on the roadway because he had been having issues with it. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Shane Webster and PCO Sam Schluckbier were on marine patrol when they observed two PWCers jumping the wake of a speed boat. A stop was made of the PWCers, and neither operator could provide a boater safety certificate. Enforcement action was taken.


CO Dan Walzak assisted Grosse Isle Police Department officers with a complaint of subjects jumping off the county bridge into the Detroit River. The subjects were caught, and the story was that it was a “family tradition” that occurred every summer even though state law prohibits the activity. It looks like the tradition is going to come to an end. Enforcement action was taken.

On the way home from a search and rescue mission, CO Mike Drexler and PCO Mark Zitnik made a traffic stop for speeding on I-69, which resulted in an arrest due to outstanding warrants for the driver. The driver had a warrant from Idaho, along with one warrant with a $5,000 bond from Lapeer County. The subject was turned over without incident to an MSP trooper out of Lapeer County.

While on marine patrol on Lake Oakland, CO Richard Cardenas observed a boat that did not have registration. CO Cardenas contacted the operator and found that the registration expired. Enforcement action was taken.

While on patrol, CO Richard Cardenas observed a vehicle in the ditch in Oakland County. CO Cardenas contacted the driver, who was still in the driver’s seat. While CO Cardenas was talking to the operator, he could smell the odor of intoxicants coming from the operator’s breath. CO Cardenas conducted field sobriety tests on the subject, and found that the driver was operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated. The subject was placed under arrest, processed for the violation, and transported to jail.

CO Mark Ennett responded to a RAP complaint of overlimits of catfish at the Edison Fishing Pier. The anglers were still at the pier as reported, and between them had too many fish, as well as numerous short ones. When asked, they both stated they were told that the creel limit on catfish was 20. When CO Ennett asked why one angler had 29, and one had 23, the only response was an elaborate shoulder shrug. CO Ennett ticketed both anglers for the overlimit of catfish, one for 19 over, and his partner for 13 over. The short fish were included with the overlimit, and a warning was given.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

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