Division of Wildlife
Central Ohio – Wildlife District 1
• State wildlife officer Tyler Eldred, assigned to Morrow County, received information from the Morrow County Sheriff’s Office that a vehicle had discarded processed deer parts in a ditch near a stream. A partial plate was retrieved from the suspect’s vehicle, but neither the suspect nor the vehicle could be located for several weeks. One day, officer Eldred was contacted by a deputy who had obtained a valid address for the suspect. Officer Eldred was able to make contact with the suspect at his residence, and further investigation revealed that not only were the deer parts illegally dumped, but neither of the two deer had been properly checked in. Two individuals were found guilty of multiple violations and paid nearly $700 in fines and court costs.
• During the 2016 Ohio dove hunting season, state wildlife officer John Coffman, assigned to Fayette County, received information from Ohio’s Turn-In-a-Poacher hotline concerning two men who were shooting doves off power lines. Officer Coffman reached the men’s location and watched as one of the men shot a dove from a power line. Further investigation revealed that the men had been hunting that day in the morning and in the evening, and both were over their daily bag limit of doves. Both men were found guilty of harvesting doves in excess of the daily bag limit, and one of the firearms was forfeited to the DNR Division of Wildlife.
Northwest Ohio – Wildlife District 2
• During the summer, state wildlife officer Ryan Kennedy, assigned to Hardin County, received a complaint that a Hancock County resident was taking and keeping undersized snapping turtles. Officer Kennedy was able to contact the suspect and found a nine-inch snapping turtle shell in his possession. Further investigation revealed the suspect had harvested the turtle with the nine-inch carapace. The suspect was issued a citation for the violation and paid $150 in fines and court costs.
• State wildlife officers were patrolling Paulding County when they came across six garbage bags of trash dumped along a road. Further investigation revealed the trash contained mail from four different individuals at the same city of Paulding address. Over the course of several days the officers contacted three different individuals at the residence and identified a suspect. The suspect was issued a summons in Paulding County Court for litter, and ordered to pay a $260 fine. Residents of the home were ordered to pick up the litter from the roadside.
Northeast Ohio – Wildlife District 3
• State wildlife officer Eric Moore, assigned to Medina County, was on patrol checking hunters on Spencer Wildlife Area. He observed three hunters in full camo hunting waterfowl over a spread of decoys. As officer Moore approached the hunters, he noticed them fumbling with something inside the boat. As he identified himself, officer Moore noticed that two of the three individuals were holding shotguns. Another shotgun was partially hidden inside a gun case behind the third hunter. Further investigation found that the shotgun was capable of holding more than three shells, which is prohibited when hunting migratory game birds. The hunter was issued a summons for the violation and paid $242 in fines and court costs.
• While patrolling Tappan Lake, state wildlife officer Nick Turner, assigned to Harrison County, observed a man and a woman fishing from the shoreline across the lake. When officer Turner contacted the couple to check their fishing licenses, it was discovered that the woman had a valid license and her male counterpart did not. The man was issued a summons for fishing without a license and paid $135 in fines and court costs.
Southeast Ohio – Wildlife District 4
• State wildlife officer Brian Baker, assigned to Belmont County, received complaints about multiple road hunting incidents in Belmont County. One evening, officer Baker was watching an intersection when a vehicle drove up and slowly illuminated the surrounding fields. Officer Baker was able to make contact with the driver of the vehicle near the intersection. Further investigation revealed deer blood and hair in the bed of the truck and information suggesting that a deer had been killed in West Virginia. However, the suspect did not have a valid West Virginia hunting license or deer tag, and did not game check a deer in West Virginia. West Virginia conservation officers are expected to charge the suspect with multiple violations. The suspect could also be charged in Ohio.
Southwest Ohio – Wildlife District 5
• State wildlife officer Gus Kiebel, assigned to Clermont County, was on patrol when he located a vehicle that was off the roadway and parked in a field. Using vehicle information, officer Kiebel determined that the owner had a valid hunting license and valid deer permit, and decided to not disturb the hunter. The next day, officer Kiebel was reviewing deer harvest data for Clermont County. He noticed that the owner of the vehicle from the previous evening had checked a deer as a landowner harvest. Officer Kiebel visited the hunter and spoke with him about where he killed the deer. The hunter told him the deer was harvested behind his house. Further investigation revealed that the hunter had harvested the deer on a different property. The man was charged with providing false information while game checking a deer and paid $125 in fines in Clermont County Municipal Court.
Division of Watercraft
• While patrolling the Mohican River in Knox County, an officer stopped to check several individuals launching canoes that didn’t show any visible boat registrations. Although it was determined that the boats were registered, the occupants didn’t have any wearable life jackets on board. Since the individuals hadn’t made it on the water yet, the officer called a local retailer to check if they had any in stock. The officer gave the individuals an opportunity to buy life jackets so they could continue on with their voyage.
• While on patrol at Alum Creek State Park, an officer witnessed a vessel operating at greater than idle speed and creating an excessive wake in a marked no-wake zone. After stopping the vessel, the officer determined the operator did not have a boater education certificate, which is required to operate a vessel over 10 horsepower if you were born after Jan. 1, 1982. The officer gave the operator a warning for the wake violation and a citation for not having the required boater education. The subject was found guilty and ordered to a pay $224 fine.
• While patrolling the Hocking River near Logan, officers issued seven citations for alcohol violations aboard operated vessels and two citations for littering. Officers also conducted six vessel safety checks.
• While patrolling at Deer Creek State Park, an officer responded to a vessel taking on water. The operator had forgotten to put the plug in the vessel but managed to get it to the shore. The officer towed the vessel back to the boat ramp.
• While patrolling on Rush Creek Reservoir, an officer responded to a capsized vessel. Two subjects had flipped their vessel while rocking it from side to side to free it from being stuck. Both subjects swam to shore and were not injured. There was no damage to the vessel and neither of the subjects was wearing a life jacket. No life jackets were on board and the subjects were warned for the violations and assisted with removal of the vessel from the water.