Michigan Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – Oct. 12, 2018

DISTRICT 1

CO Josh Boudreaux encountered a man operating a motorboat on Lake Angeline without MC numbers or proper registration. Upon contacting the fisherman, it was discovered that the man had multiple warrants for his arrest from multiple counties. The man was arrested and subsequently transported to the Marquette County Jail.

CO Josh Boudreaux was patrolling Lake Michigamme following heavy rains in the area. Boudreaux spent the morning checking fishermen and pulled floating logs and other hazards from the main body of the lake. As Boudreaux was preparing to pull his boat from the water, he received a phone call about a pontoon seen adrift on the lake. Boudreaux located the pontoon and secured it to a nearby dock. The owner of the pontoon, who was unaware it was missing, was contacted and immediately came to retrieve it. The owner was incredibly thankful for the assistance.

COs Josh Boudreaux and Brett DeLonge conducted a joint ORV patrol on a section of the Iron Ore Heritage Trail that runs through private property. The patrol was in response to complaints that ORVs were not stopping at stop signs. The COs checked several ORVs during the patrol and they all were compliant with trail regulations.

CO Brett DeLonge was on marine patrol en route to another lake when he observed an ORV operating in the middle of a paved roadway. DeLonge followed the ORV and observed that it was being operated at a high rate of speed. DeLonge conducted a traffic stop on the ORV and discussed the violations observed. After noticing the ORV was properly licensed and that the operator was wearing his seatbelt, DeLonge explained safe ORV operation on the roadway and enforcement action was taken.

CO Jared Ferguson was patrolling Iron County when he received a complaint of a large dog chasing deer in the Amasa area. Ferguson traveled to the area and located a Great Dane running down the road. Ferguson was able to corral the dog and wait for its owners to arrive. The owners stated the animal was let out by a toddler at the residence and has been gone all morning. A quick education about dogs running at large and chasing deer was given and the happy dog owners were on their way.

DISTRICT 2

CO Bobby Watson discovered multiple illegal bear baits in preparation of the 2018 bear opener. The illegal sites will continue to be monitored for further activity.

While patrolling Masonville Township, CO Stephen Butzin and a Delta County Sheriff’s deputy responded to a two-car accident. Butzin was first on scene, he checked the status of the occupants, and requested that EMS respond as well. Once EMS responded, care was turned over to medical professionals. Thankfully both parties involved suffered only minor injuries.

CO Stephen Butzin responded to a report of a suicidal subject who was attempting to harm himself and other residents of the household. Butzin along with the Michigan State Police entered the residence and were able to secure the subject. Thankfully the situation was defused before any harm was done. The subject was transported by the Michigan State Police to the hospital where he will receive treatment.

COs Colton Gelinas and acting Sgt. Michael Evink were on waterfowl patrol in Schoolcraft County. The night before Gelinas received information from CO Mark Zitnik of possible illegal waterfowl activity. Gelinas and Evink patrolled the area in question. The COs were observing waterfowl hunting activity on a small field. During the morning, the COs observed two sandhill cranes fly over their location followed by gun shots coming from the field. The COs contacted the group of hunters. During the interview with the hunters it was determined that one individual in the group shot both sandhill cranes, which were subsequently recovered. Law enforcement action was taken, and a report is being filed with Schoolcraft County Prosecutor’s Office.

DISTRICT 3

CO Andrea Erratt checked several fishermen on the pier fishing in the Pine River channel. While checking fishermen on the south pier, Erratt observed a group of five fishermen look in her direction, talk to each other, reel in, and set down their fishing rods. Erratt checked the group and only one angler had a license. Erratt ticketed the other four individuals for fishing without a license. CO Sidney Collins was working the elk season when a hunter shot a cow elk on state land that ran onto private property and died. Collins was able to resolve the situation and recover the animal for the successful hunter.

CO Sidney Collins was called to an area where a hunter missed a bull elk the night before. Collins and others searched the area for any sign of blood. After hours of searching, the hunter was cleared and able to continue the hunt.

CO Sidney Collins went to a complaint of a dog hunter/property owner conflict. A dog hunter heard gun shots at the same time his dogs were running on a bear. When the dog hunter saw that one of his dogs stopped on the GPS he confronted the property owner asking if dogs had been running nearby. The property owner said he hadn’t seen them but insisted he was target shooting. After some investigating, the dog was OK and there was a misunderstanding about the shots being fired at the same time the dogs were passing through.

CO Sidney Collins assisted the Montmorency County Sheriff’s Deputies, and the Michigan State Police with a B&E suspect. The suspect broke into a cabin where a local homeowner found him. The suspect then ran off. MSP brought a canine unit to the scene. Collins and the canine unit tracked the suspect through the thick woods. The canine found a backpack full of items, including a laptop. The backpack had a name in it which led deputies to an address nearby. Collins and the canine unit continued to track the suspect through the woods. The canine was able to find the suspect’s clothes which was stripped off to lose the scent. The investigation is ongoing.

DISTRICT 4

COs William Haskin and Steve Converse were patrolling in Manistee County at the Tippy Dam when they noticed an angler fishing with illegal fishing gear. The angler was using a lure made of mostly lead with treble hooks. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Justin Vanderlinde and Rebecca Hubers responded to two separate calls of persons using seine nets in the Betsie River to take salmon. The subjects were identified and turned over to responding GTB Tribal conservation officers.

COs Patrick McManus and Rebecca Hubers responded to an injured bear call at a residence in Grand Traverse County. The female cub bear was located on a porch of a residence. It appeared the bear had been there for at least a day. The bear was euthanized because of its inability to move its rear legs and sent to the Wildlife Lab for further assessment.

COs Rebecca Hubers, Justin Vanderlinde, William Kinney, Patrick McManus and Amanda McCurdy concentrated their patrol efforts on the Betsie River. As soon as the fish arrived, hundreds of people quickly followed suit. Numerous citations were issued primarily for possession of illegal fishing gear, snagging, retaining fowl hooked fish, and disorderly conduct on state land.

While on patrol on the Betsie River, CO Amanda McCurdy observed an angler who was attempting to snag fish. After watching his technique for several minutes, McCurdy contacted the subject. A check of the individual returned with a felony warrant out of Wayne County for his arrest. The warrant was confirmed, but McCurdy was instructed to advise and release the subject because there was not a unit available for transport. A citation was issued for possession of illegal fishing gear and a verbal warning was issued for attempting to snag.

CO William Kinney has been patrolling the Betsie River in Benzie County for fishing activity. With a busy salmon run, Kinney has issued several citations including fishing without a license and fishing with illegal gear.

DISTRICT 5

CO Hudson observed a group of hunters in the field and decided to make contact. By the time Hudson hid his vehicle and made it cross country through woods and field, it was nearly 20 minutes past legal shooting hours. The hunters were still actively calling and shooting geese as Hudson contacted them. Hudson asked why they were hunting waterfowl so late and one of them replied, “I wasn’t hunting waterfowl, I was hunting geese!” The group turned out to be 15 to 17 years of age. The youth had read the wrong hunting guide and thought they could hunt for 30 minutes after sunset. All licenses, firearms and ammunition were legal. Hudson decided a good explanation and education about the importance of conservation laws would serve greater purpose than citations. Verbal warnings were given to the group.

CO James Garrett conducted surveillance on an early bear bait. After two hours of sitting in the dark, Garrett heard the faint sound of bear hounds in the distance. A few minutes later, a blue pickup truck stopped on the side of the road and a houndsman entered the woods to check the bait. When the houndsman got to the bait location, Garrett turned on his flashlight and identified himself as a conservation officer. The houndsman was cited for tending a bear bait prior to baiting season.

COs Ben McAteer and Charlie Jones were on patrol in Crawford County when they observed a minivan traveling at a high rate of speed. McAteer’s patrol truck was equipped with a radar unit and showed the vehicle to be traveling at 106 mph in a 55 mph zone. The COs conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle and immediately noticed the smell of intoxicants coming from the driver. McAteer conducted field sobrieties on the driver and determined he had a blood alcohol content of nearly twice the legal limit. The operator was arrested for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and reckless operation.

DISTRICT 6

CO Will Brickel was on patrol in Saginaw County watching several groups of goose hunters. After observing the hunters and seeing no birds being shot, Brickel made contact with one of the groups. During the check, it was found that one of the individuals was using a shotgun capable of holding more than three shells. Enforcement action was taken.

During the early goose and teal opener, COs Bob Hobkirk and Seth Rhodea worked Saginaw Bay. The first group the COs observed shot at teal 15 minutes prior to the opening time to hunt teal. A citation was issued for the violation. Later in the morning, another group was checked and found to have loaded firearms while underway in their motor boat. They also did not have any PFDs on board. They were cited for the firearm violation and the life jacket violation.

While on patrol in Isabella County, COs Dan Robinson and Mike Haas contacted a group of field geese hunters. After checking for licenses, proper ammunition and plugged shotguns it was discovered that one of the subjects was hunting from out-of- state and did not purchase the federal waterfowl stamp. Enforcement action was taken.

While working Six Lakes in Montcalm County, COs Dan Robinson and Josh Russell contacted several fishermen and recreational boaters. Several citations were issued for unregistered boats, fishing without a license and failing to provide proper personal floatation devices.

DISTRICT 7

CO Travis Dragomer observed two anglers fishing upon the St. Joseph River in Berrien Springs. The CO conducted a fish check on the anglers and it was determined one of them did not have a current fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Matt Page and Tyler Cole checked a local stream for fishing activity when someone advised them that they had witnessed a subject snag two fish. The suspect then removed the eggs from both fish and proceeded to pack up his gear, minus the fish, once the COs arrived on scene. The COs talked with several witnesses who corroborated the story and with some searching the COs were able to locate two king salmon, which had been gutted and the eggs removed, still on a stringer in the river. Witnesses stated the suspect removed a treble hook from the salmon’s tail after catching it. The COs located a snag wound near the tail further proving the witnesses’ statements. The COs interviewed the suspect who denied having done any fishing due to not having a license. Page recognized the man as someone who he arrested last year for fishing in a closed stream at the same location. A report will be submitted to the prosecutor’s office for review.

CO Kyle McQueer received a phone call from CO Jeremy Cantrell about a RAP complaint he received. After obtaining the location and information about the complaint, McQueer went to Decker Road bridge in Colon Township where he observed two individuals fishing. After contacting the individuals and measuring their fish, it was found that they had four undersized bass. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Cary Foster, Ivan Perez, Justin Ulberg and Greg Patten conducted a boat patrol on the Labor Day holiday. While on Muskegon Lake the COs observed several subjects fishing from shore. When the COs approached the subjects, one of them walked away and threw something into some bushes nearby. The subject denied throwing anything away. The subject did not have a fishing license and denied fishing despite still having a bluegill on the hook of one of his fishing lines. Enforcement action was taken.

DISTRICT 8

CO Andrew Monnich and CO Mike Drexler were checking goose hunters when they came across a group of hunters just off a public boat ramp. The COs contacted the group, and while checking licenses and firearms, they located lead shot shells in one of the hunter’s gear bag. The young hunters were educated on toxic shot and enforcement action was taken.

CO Shane Webster transported a subject from the Calhoun County Jail to the Jackson County Jail on a DNR warrant. The warrant was issued due to the subject having failed to pay his fines and costs associated with a case Webster worked in 2012. The suspect had taken a deer during the youth-only season and utilized his young son’s tag on the deer.

CO Larn R. Strawn conducted a foot patrol of the Muskrat Lake. Strawn watched a group of three duck hunters arrive and get set-up for the morning hunt. Strawn observed all three hunters take a shot at pair of passing ducks well before the legal shooting hours. One of the ducks fell and the hunters retrieved it. Strawn contacted the hunters and discussed the hunting hours violation. During the contact, Strawn also discovered lead shot as well as multiple license violations. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Katie Stawara and Todd Thorn were patrolling along the Grand River when they came across an angler fishing at the dock off Moore’s Drive. When asked for his fishing license, the subject produced an expired one. The subject admitted to previously having received a fish-without-a-license ticket, which he did jail time for after it went to a bench warrant status. He stated this was his second time out this year and he just hadn’t gotten his license yet. A citation was issued for the subject’s second offense.

DISTRICT 9

CO Jessie Curtis was patrolling in the Lapeer State Game Area near the Lapeer shooting pit, when she noticed three male subjects shooting at a five-foot stuffed horse and about two dozen water bottles. In the Lapeer shooting pit, shooters can’t shoot at a target other than a paper, cardboard or commercially-produced portable target designed for the specific purpose of target shooting. Enforcement action taken.

While checking anglers in Macomb County, CO Joseph Deppen noticed two men fishing along a pier. As Deppen starting checking anglers, the two men walked away from their fishing gear and sat at a nearby table. Deppen spoke to the men about the fishing gear and they claimed they were watching it for a friend. Deppen spoke to the men about watching them fish and obtained a confession that neither had a fishing license. The anglers packed up their gear and enforcement action was taken.

COs Kris Kiel and Brad Silorey were watching waterfowl hunters at the end of hunting hours. A group of three hunters were observed past the ending of legal shooting hours where one subject was still loaded and hunting while the other two picked up the decoys. That individual, after being contacted, also failed to purchase a federal stamp. He said that he was only hunting geese and the federal stamp is only for ducks. He also failed to disclose that he was carrying a pistol with a concealed pistol license. Enforcement action was taken.

COs Brad Silorey, Joe Deppen and Sgt. Todd Szyska were working marine patrol checking waterfowl hunters on Lake St. Clair when they spotted a hunter packing up his decoys. The hunter stated that he had shot two green-winged teal. Deppen observed the hunter had two shotguns in his boat. Silorey, Deppen and Szyska questioned the hunter on why he had two shotguns. The subject stated that he had the other gun in case one stopped working. As Deppen was looking through the rest of the subject’s boat, Szyska and Silorey looked at the subject’s hunting bag that had his shells in it. Szyska and Silorey also found marijuana and liquid THC in a vaporizer. Silorey held up the drugs to the subject, and the subject stated, “I’m going to jail.” As the COs continued their check, they found additional marine safety equipment violations. The subject stated, “everything is illegal about me today, including my dog (the dog didn’t even have a license).

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