Illinois Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – Sept. 7, 2018
Northwest Zone – Captain Laura Petreikis
In Stephenson County, CPO Beltran responded to a complaint that a Freeport resident had a raccoon taken from the wild and was keeping it as a pet. Upon arrival, the raccoon was found to be domesticated and begging for food. CPO Beltran transported the animal to a licensed animal rehabilitator, and the woman was issued a citation for taking the raccoon from the wild and keeping it as a pet.
In LaSalle County, CPO Finn responded to a 911 call from Matthiessen State Park concerning two men with guns. The call turned out to be two men who were legally squirrel hunting. Then men were checked and found to have everything required to legally hunt at the site.
In Henry County, CPO Posateri received a call from a Galva man who wanted to turn himself in for shooting a badger out of season. He thought it was a ground hog; but after shooting it, he discovered that it was a male badger. He was issued a citation for the unlawful taking of a protected species, and several other written warnings were issued. Badgers are only allowed to be taken during the trapping season, and only one per season is allowed in the North zone.
In Fulton County, CPO Thompson received a trespassing complaint. He and CPO Elliott responded, and two male subjects were observed fishing without permission on private property. In addition, one of the individuals was in the water and attempting to snag fish. The men were cited for fishing without permission, and written warnings were issued for illegal snagging.
In Jersey County, CPO Goetten checked a fisherman for compliance on the Illinois River. The subject provided an Illinois resident fishing license, but the subject’s vehicle registration and identification confirmed he resided in Missouri. He admitted he had falsified residency in Illinois since the 1970s to obtain a license at a cheaper price. He was cited for providing fraudulent information to obtain a resident license and fishing without a valid license.
In Christian County, CPO Fraser stopped a vehicle traveling without visible registration. The driver stated he recently purchased the pickup truck and was transporting it to “Mudfest” where it would stay and not be driven on the road. The driver did not have registration or insurance for the vehicle. CPO Fraser detected the strong odor of cannabis coming from the vehicle, and a subsequent search uncovered less than 10 grams of cannabis and cannabis paraphernalia. The driver was given citations for driving without insurance, civil cannabis, and paraphernalia and released.
In Mason County, CPOs Blakeley, Fraser, Gilmer, and Wichern conducted boat patrols during the Redneck Fishing Tournament in the Bath chute on the Illinois River. Numerous boats were inspected during the two-day tournament. Warnings were issued for not wearing cutoff lanyards, fire extinguishers, Type IV throwable PFDs, and careless operation for boaters following too closely to another vessel. Citations were issued to boaters who failed to require their children (under age 13) to wear life jackets while the boat was underway.
In Sangamon County, CPO Macias was on patrol on Lake Springfield when he came across a subject fishing who did not have a fishing license.
The subject was from New York and did not speak English. The subject called a family member to serve as a translator. Through the interpreter, CPO Macias issued a citation and explained the methods to take care of the violation.
Northeast Zone – Capt. Brett Scroggins
In Kane County, While checking fishermen, CPO Knop observed a fisherman using a cast net while another person watched. Every time the net was brought in, both people shouted ecstatically as the contents of the net were dumped into a 5-gallon bucket. A fishing compliance check was conducted, and the fishermen had primarily been netting crappie and bluegill. Enforcement action was taken.
In McHenry County, CPOs Semenik and Davis were patrolling a gravel pit pond that was posted as no trespassing when they observed three subjects fishing in the area. One subject was found to be in possession of 21 grams of cocaine. He was transported to the McHenry County Jail and charged with a Class 1 Felony. The other two subjects were cited for fishing without permission and released at the scene.
In Kendall County, CPO Bergland and Sgt. Wollgast assisted the Kendall County Sheriff’s Department when human remains were found by volunteers picking up trash on an island in the Fox River near Montgomery. The responding deputies, investigators, coroners, and specialists were transported back and forth across the shallow river via the use of the Department’s airboat.
In Will County, CPOs Reid and Honiotes received a call from two boaters on the Kankakee River regarding a large group of individuals setting illegal trot lines and limb lines along the bank. The two groups got in a verbal altercation after the boats got tangled in the illegal trot lines. Enforcement action was taken against the group for: unlawful devices, no fishing license, alcohol in a restricted area, and having an unauthorized camp fire.
In Will County, CPO Reid observed a small jon boat without valid registration on the Kankakee River. The small watercraft had four occupants (including two children) and appeared very undersized for the river conditions and heavy recreational traffic as it bounced around off the wake from larger boats. Contact was made with the vessel, and it was discovered they did not have life jackets, a throwable floatation device, or other required safety equipment. The boat also did not have valid registration and was over its passenger capacity. Multiple citations/warnings were issued.
In Cook County, While assigned to patrol at William W. Powers State Recreation Area, CPO Stanbary observed a man fishing. The man claimed that he was holding the pole for his wife. A warning was warning was issued for no valid sport fishing license, and he was educated on how to obtain a license should he decide to fish in the future. During the patrol, he also issued a written warning to a fisherman who was parked in a restricted area. A warning was issued to a boater for unsecured batteries and no type IV throwable onboard his vessel.
In Cook County, CPO Ausmus conducted fishing enforcement at area ponds and observed three subjects fishing in the far back corner of a pond. When he returned to that area a short time later, he observed two male subjects in the same spot as earlier. CPO Ausmus talked with the third angler near his vehicle. The subject produced a valid sport fishing license and stated he had no fish. CPO Ausmus continued around the pond. Halfway back, the two anglers from earlier approached him. They stated they were not fishing and had not caught any fish. CPO Ausmus continued down to the area where he first observed them, and he located a large mouth bass in a bucket, along with two fishing poles with baited hooks in the water. One rod and reel was laying in the water, atop the moss and weeds. CPO Ausmus ordered all three subjects back to the fishing spot and asked for an explanation. Both subjects admitted to fishing, and neither of them had licenses.
The licensed angler admitted the bass was his, but he was not sure it was long enough to keep. The bass was measured, and it was of legal size. The two anglers were issued citations for unattended sport fishing devices and warnings for fishing without a valid sport fishing license. The owner of the pole that was in the pond was also issued a written warning for pollution of a waterway.
In Cook County, CPO Mooi was patrolling Lake Michigan when he observed a jet ski without registration being operated by a young child. A stop was conducted, and the operator was found to be ten years old. The operator did not have a boater safety certificate or an adult present. The father of the child was located, and a citation was issued for parental responsibility of the youthful operator. In a separate incident, CPO Mooi observed a child operating a jet ski with another child on the back. A stop was conducted, and the operator was found to be 14 years old, and the passenger was eight years old. The operator did not possess a valid boater safety certificate. The parent of the operator was located, and a citation was issued for parental responsibility of the youthful operator.
In Du Page County, CPO Ausmus investigated a complaint from the district biologist regarding a goose in distress. The complainant stated the goose had fishing line wrapped around its feet and wings. The complainant attempted to capture the goose but was unsuccessful. CPO Ausmus checked the area later that afternoon, and all the geese were gone.
In Du Page County, CPO Ausmus checked several anglers at Mallard Lake. Two subjects were located on a secluded point, and a fishing compliance check was conducted. One angler was issued a written warning for no fishing license, and the second angler was issued a written warning for fishing license not in possession.
In Du Page County, CPO Thornley conducted sport fish enforcement at the Des Plaines River. One fisherman was asked if he possessed a fishing license. The man stated neither he nor his 17-year-old daughter had a license. The man was issued a citation for no fishing license, and his daughter was issued a written warning for no fishing license.
CPO Mooi was patrolling Lake Michigan when he observed a boat traveling directly toward the closed Chicago Harbor lock gates. CPO Mooi informed the boat’s operator that it would be a few minutes before the lock would open, and he would need to wait north of the gates. While inside the lock chamber, CPO Mooi observed the operator having difficulties getting his boat seated against the wall. Upon exiting the lock, the boat was operating on the south side of the river, against the flow of traffic. CPO Mooi activated the lights on his patrol boat, and a stop was conducted. After the safety inspection and field sobriety testing, the operator was arrested for OUI. The operator refused to provide a breath sample. In a separate incident, CPO Mooi observed a boat coming out of the lock making a very erratic turn. An attempt was made to stop the vessel, but it continued traveling away from the patrol boat. The suspect vessel operated dangerously close to a commercial vessel, coming directly under the commercial vessel’s bow, narrowly avoiding a collision. A stop was finally made on the suspect vessel, and a safety inspection was conducted. The operator was subsequently arrested for OUI (BAC of .162 percent).
South Zone – Capt. Jim Mayes
In Cumberland County, CPO Wellum assisted with location of overdue “tubers” on the Embarrass River. The subjects had been on the River for over 13 hours before being located. There were no injuries, but all three subjects were tired and cold.
In Madison County, CPO Liebl arrested a Missouri man for fishing without a valid fishing license. The man said he had recently bought a license but did not have it with him. A check of his license history showed he had not purchased a fishing license in Illinois since 2006.
In Franklin County, CPOs Lay, Folden, and Williams assisted with the search and recovery of a suspected drowning victim at Rend Lake. An elderly Jefferson County man appeared to have been fishing along a rocky shoreline area of Rend Lake. The fisherman was found via sonar equipment, and the Rend Lake dive team recovered the victim.
In Jefferson County, CPO Lay, Sgt. Cariens, and Rend Lake Corps of Engineers rangers responded to the Ina boat access area of Rend Lake after learning of a reported boat accident. The boat with five occupants had been operating a half mile northwest of the Ina access area when they hit a submerged stump which caused significant damage to the boat’s hull. The boat’s operator was able to bring the boat to the launch at Ina and pull it out of the water. No injuries were reported; however, the damage to the hull was estimated to be over $2,000.
In Marion County, CPO Buhnerkempe cited a Centralia man for unlawfully poisoning wildlife. The man placed methomyl poison near his barn to control nuisance animals. Methomyl is extremely toxic to small animals and typically, within minutes, kills anything that ingests it. Other animals, including pets, that consume the dead animal can be poisoned as well. Poisoning wildlife is a serious offense and carries a minimum fine of $500 and up to a year in jail.
In Richland County, CPO Roper received a complaint regarding an individual who was unlawfully trapping raccoons inside the city limits of Olney. It was determined that this individual was trapping the raccoons to train hunting dogs. The man was issued one citation for unlawfully trapping a raccoon and retaining it alive.
In Jackson County, CPO Johnson assisted the Illinois State Police by running sonar grid patterns to try to locate guns that were allegedly tossed into the Mississippi River.
In Union County, CPO Vasicek, in collaboration with the US Forest Service, US Department of Agriculture, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Union County Animal Control, investigated a population of hogs that was introduced into the wild on Shawnee National Forest property. Approximately 20 pigs of several different ages, sexes, and varieties were released from a stock trailer near a wilderness area in the National Forest. Traps have captured several hogs, and the effort to capture the rest is ongoing.