Ohio Cuffs & Collars – January 29th, 2016

Division of Wildlife

Central Ohio – Wildlife District 1

• While reviewing deer harvest records in Marion County, state wildlife officer Chad Grote noticed a possible deer tagging violation. An antlered deer had been checked, but according to the records the deer was harvested two hours before the permit was purchased. Officer Grote investigated the potential violation further and found that the man who checked the deer had not purchased a deer permit in five years. Officer Grote met with the man who checked in the deer. Further investigation revealed the deer he checked was actually killed by his son. He bought the tag to check the deer in for his son so he could continue to pursue a bigger buck. Both were issued summonses for their violations. Together they paid $376 in fines and court costs. They also each have $300 in fines and 30 days in jail pending if they should have any more violations in the next two years.

• While on patrol during deer-gun season, state wildlife officer Patrick Muldovan, assigned to Licking County, witnessed a man exit the woods without the proper hunter orange clothing. Upon contacting the man, officer Muldovan asked why he did not have on any hunter orange, and the man stated that he thought the deer would see him easier if he wore it. Officer Muldovan informed the man of the safety purposes behind the requirement for wearing hunter orange during the deer-gun seasons, and that preventable incidents have taken place in the past because hunters did not wear the required clothing. The man was issued a summons and paid $150 in fines and court costs.

Northwest Ohio – Wildlife District 2

• During the summer, state wildlife officer Cody Klima, assigned to Wood County, was patrolling an area known for people fishing without licenses. Officer Klima noticed a car parked in a peculiar way and suspected someone was fishing nearby. Officer Klima parked and walked toward the river. As he walked past the vehicle, officer Klima noticed someone asleep in the passenger seat. He continued toward the river and made contact with a young man fishing. Officer Klima discovered that the individual did not have a valid fishing license. The man stated that his friend in the car had a fishing license, and was serving as a lookout for any wildlife officers. The man was issued a summons for fishing without a license and was later ordered to pay a fine and court costs.

• During the 2015 deer-gun season, state wildlife officer Nathan West, assigned to Wyandot County, received a phone call from the Upper Sandusky Police Department about someone shooting a deer inside the city limits and on city property. The police department advised that the hunter did not have permission to hunt on the property, and a deer was loaded in his vehicle. Upon arriving at the location, the deer was in the back of an SUV, was not field dressed, and was not tagged. The individual had unsuccessfully tried to leave the area quickly. The individual was not able to produce a hunting license or a deer permit. After further investigation, officer West determined that the individual had not purchased a valid hunting license or deer permit. The deer was seized as evidence. The individual was charged for hunting without a valid license and deer permit. The individual paid more than $330 in fines and court costs, received a 30-day jail sentence suspended on the condition of no wildlife violations for three years, and had his hunting privileges suspended for three years. Concerned sportsmen and women are encouraged to contact the DNR Division of Wildlife’s TIP hotline at 1-800-POACHER (1-800-762-2437) to report wildlife violations.

Northeast Ohio – Wildlife District 3

• During the 2015 deer-gun season, state wildlife officer Craig Porter, assigned to Jefferson County, received a call regarding a hunting without permission complaint. Officer Porter was given a license plate number and was able to obtain an address for the suspect. Officer Porter contacted the man at his residence, and through the investigation identified two additional suspects. In addition to hunting without permission, two of the men were hunting without valid hunting licenses and deer permits, and one of the suspects was not wearing hunter orange. All three men were charged and convicted in Jefferson County Court. The men paid fines and court costs totaling $1,500.

• State wildlife officer Aaron Brown, assigned to Wayne County, was given anonymous information regarding a man who killed an antlered deer on private property without permission. Officer Brown was given limited information, but was able to develop a suspect. The individual did tag an antlered deer around the same time as the caller had reported. The suspect was contacted and it was revealed that the individual tagged the buck using a deer permit he purchased after the hunt. Officer Brown issued the man two summonses, one for hunting without permission, and one for tagging a deer with a permit purchased after the animal was killed. The antlers, venison, and the crossbow used in the violation were seized. The man was convicted in court and ordered to pay $413 in fines and costs. The antlers and the venison were forfeited to the DNR Division of Wildlife.

Southeast Ohio – Wildlife District 4

• State wildlife officer Ted Witham, assigned to Jackson County, was working spotlight enforcement in October 2015 in an area that reported numerous complaints. The night was uneventful and officer Witham was getting ready to leave when a truck approached his location. The truck was moving slow and stopped in the roadway. Officer Witham then observed a spotlight shine the field. Officer Witham pulled out of his location and again observed the spotlight shine a different part of the field. Officer Witham conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle. Officer Witham recovered a spotlight and a loaded rifle. The suspect was issued a citation and ordered to appear in court. The suspect pleaded guilty to spotlighting while in possession of a firearm, and was found guilty. He received a $250 fine and was ordered to pay $135 in court costs. The rifle and spotlight were forfeited to the DNR Division of Wildlife, and the suspect lost his hunting privileges for one year.

• While on patrol in the AEP ReCreation Lands, state wildlife officer Roy Rucker, assigned to Gallia County, observed trash that was dumped over the side of the road into a ravine. Officer Rucker inspected the trash and was able to locate some items that led him to a local resident. Further investigation revealed the suspect dumped the trash. The subject was cited for the violation and paid $165 in fines and court costs.

Southwest Ohio – Wildlife District 5

• State wildlife officer Ryan Schock, assigned to Hamilton County, and state wildlife officer Eric Lamb, assigned to Brown County, encountered some spotlighting activity in late October while patrolling in Adams County. The officers observed a beam of light shining from a vehicle into a hay field. The officers conducted a traffic stop and discovered three men in the vehicle. Officer Schock found two firearms. Two of the men were charged with spotlighting, and their firearms and lights were seized as evidence. The court cases are pending.

Division of Watercraft

Northeast – Akron Area Office

• In October, watercraft officers were patrolling the area of Pymatuning Creek in the Shenango Wildlife Area (Trumbull County) when they observed a vessel traveling down the creek with two occupants. The front occupant was holding a shotgun in the ready position on his lap, and the other was operating the vessel. While the vessel was still in motion, the watercraft officers witnessed the front occupant with the shotgun pull up the gun to the fire position and fire a round at a duck that was flying overhead. During this process, the front occupant never loaded prior to the shot. Both individuals then exited the vessel to retrieve the duck and then continued down the creek toward the watercraft officers. Upon making contact with them, the front occupant was advised to unload the shotgun. A vessel safety check was then conducted on the vessel, and it was discovered that there was no distress flag onboard the vessel. The operator was issued a citation for transporting a loaded firearm in a vessel and provided warnings for not having a distress flag and for rallying wildlife. The operator was cooperative and soon after paid the $324 fine.

Northwest – Sandusky Area Office

• In October, two people from Virginia attempted to set buoys on Lake Erie approximately a tenth of a mile off Cedar Point Beach for the triathlon scheduled for the next day. There was a 12 mph northeast wind, and it was raining hard. They were on a pontoon vessel that was loaded with 14 50-pound weights on the stern of the vessel. Due to improper loading of the vessel and the weather, the engine became flooded with water. The vessel became swamped, and the two people on board called to shore for help. The U.S. Coast Guard was called and pulled them off the swamped vessel. The following day, the vessel was pulled out by Cedar Fair. Watercraft officers completed the required accident report and found the operator was missing a life jacket and had five other equipment violations. The operator was issued one citation for not having enough life jackets on board.

Central – Alum Creek Area Office

• In October, a watercraft officer was on boat patrol at Alum Creek Lake in Delaware County when he observed a female operating a personal watercraft while towing another person on a tube. There was no passenger on the personal watercraft to observe the person being towed, which is required in Ohio. The officer stopped the personal watercraft and found that the operator was of an age that requires completion of a boating safety course to operate a boat powered by more than 10 horsepower. The operator had not completed a boating safety course. The personal watercraft had California registration numbers on it but had no decal displaying the year of expiration. Records showed that the vessel’s registration had expired six years earlier. After a safety inspection was completed, it was discovered that there was no distress flag onboard the vessel as well. The personal watercraft was terminated from the water, and the owner was cited for allowing another person to operate it without taking a boating safety course. The penalty was to pay $139 in fines and fees.

Southeast – Scioto County Office

• In December, during a patrol on the Ohio River, a watercraft officer stopped a vessel in the restricted area at the Greenup Locks and Dam. Upon making contact with the fishermen, a vessel safety inspection was completed. No safety equipment violations were found. The owner/operator was given a warning for being in the restricted area and then issued a card from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers detailing the restricted zone at the dam. The fishermen all had a valid fishing licenses and had caught their limit of sauger.

Southwest – East Fork Area Office

• In December, while on patrol at East Fork State Park, a watercraft officer observed a vessel traveling at greater than idle speed in a designated no-wake zone near Slade boat ramp. The officer observed the boat operating on full plane. The vessel was stopped at the ramp, and a vessel safety check was conducted. Upon completion of the vessel safety check, the following violations were found: no visual distress signal and no fire extinguisher. The vessel was terminated from the water. In speaking with the operator, he admitted that he boated at East Fork for many years and knew it was a no wake. He was issued a citation for traveling at greater than idle speed in a designated no-wake zone. He was told he could return to the water if he went and got an operational fire extinguisher.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *