Michigan Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – December 3, 2021

DISTRICT 1

CO Ethen Mapes responded to a search and rescue in the Porcupine Mountains after a hiker signaled for help. The Porcupine Mountains State Park rescue boat was used to transport first responders, park rangers, and CO Mapes to a location on the shoreline of Lake Superior. Rescuers hiked into the subject, who had suffered a heart attack, and were able to extract the hiker from his campsite and bring him to an awaiting ambulance. The search lasted for several hours in the night with heavy rain.

CO Byron Parks assisted Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC) conservation wardens with instructing at a Michigan Hunter Safety Course in Baraga County. The officers conducted a two-day course, with the first day being material review and the second day being the field day and test. All participants received their hunter safety certificate.

CO Shannon Kritz was on patrol when she observed an ORV with two riders not wearing helmets. CO Kritz stopped the ORV and noticed the operator had an open container of beer. The operator explained that they had been bird hunting and they stopped to have a beer. The operator did not finish the beer before continuing the ride, but knew it was illegal to have an open container on an ORV. CO Kritz asked him if his gun was unloaded, and he replied that it was. CO Kritz then checked the gun which was loaded. Enforcement action was taken.

Sergeant (Sgt.) Brian Bacon was checking duck hunters when a three-wheeled ORV drove by without an ORV trail permit and no brake light. Sgt Bacon stopped the ORV and soon discovered that the operator was on parole, had a revoked driver’s license, and had two misdemeanor warrants for operating while intoxicated (OWI) and operating while revoked. The operator was lodged in the county jail.

DISTRICT 2

COs Colton Gelinas, Justin Vinson, and Cole VanOosten held a Hunter Safety Field Day at the Hiawatha Sportsman’s Club Trap Range. There were close to 50 participants in the field day. Various donations from local restaurants and sporting goods stores allowed every participant to win a prize at the end of the day. One lucky youth was able to win a donated .22 rifle. Attitudes at the field day remained high, even in unfavorable weather. Special thanks go out the Hiawatha Sportsman Club and their volunteer members, great job by all!

CO Cole VanOosten was on patrol in Luce County when he received a complaint from the Report All Poaching (RAP) hotline of a group of hunters shooting geese after legal hunting hours. CO VanOosten drove to the area and contacted the hunters. It was determined that the hunters had shot seven geese after legal waterfowl hunting hours. The hunters initially stated that they had shot at waterfowl after legal hunting hours but that they were just finishing off crippled geese. An interview with witnesses determined that the group had shot at three groups of geese after legal hunting hours. With the assistance of astute witnesses, it was determined that the group had shot geese as late as 33 minutes after the close of waterfowl hunting hours for that day The geese were seized, and a report was generated for review from the Luce County Prosecutor’s Office.

CO Colton Gelinas assisted Mackinac County Sheriff’s Department processing stolen property that was stored on state land.

CO Cole VanOosten was first on scene following the report of a missing angler in Schoolcraft County. The angler had not been in contact with anyone for approximately 30 hours. A family member located the angler’s truck at a boat launch in Schoolcraft County. CO VanOosten used his patrol boat to search the lake and located the man’s empty boat. A multi-agency search occurred for the missing individual, who had known medical issues. The following day, with assistance from DNR Aviation, DNR Forest Resource Division (FRD), MSP dive team, MSP, Sault Tribe Law Enforcement, and the Schoolcraft County Sheriff’s Department, the man’s body was located in the lake. CO VanOosten assisted the MSP dive team in extracting the body from the lake.

CO Justin Vinson was patrolling a two-track road in Luce County and checking for hunting activity when he noticed a pickup truck stopped in the middle of the roadway.  CO Vinson pulled alongside the truck and noticed two uncased shotguns wedged in the front seat. The two men admitted the shotguns were loaded and that they were looking for grouse.  The two suspects received citations for transporting loaded firearms in a motor vehicle.

DISTRICT 3

While off duty, CO Nathan Beelman received a complaint from a Charlevoix County sheriff’s deputy, regarding a subject shooting from a motor vehicle at a deer. CO Beelman arrived in the area a few minutes later and assisted the on-scene deputy. A witness observed a subject shoot from a truck on the county road and kill a deer in an apple orchard. The suspect then ran into the orchard and started dragging the deer away. CO Adam Leclerc and PCO Brandon Maki arrived to assist and found the suspect walking down the road in the dark. When they stopped to talk to him, he fled into a cedar swamp. The COs were able to quickly find and apprehend him. The second suspect that was in the vehicle also left the scene and hid the vehicle and the firearm used to shoot the deer. The driver initially denied shooting at a deer from the vehicle, but eventually stated that the passenger of the truck was the one that shot from the vehicle. All evidence pointed to the fact that the driver was in fact the shooter. The deer was found hidden in an empty apple crate inside of the orchard and the firearm was hidden in a deer blind. Both suspects are facing multiple charges for resisting and obstructing, taking game from a motor vehicle, failing to tag the deer, and not wearing hunter orange, among other charges. The suspect was hunting on a deer damage permit given to him by the landowner.

CO Tim Rosochacki was monitoring the Cheboygan Dam for salmon fishing activity when he observed three different subjects keep fish that were not hooked in the mouth. CO Rosochacki contacted the subjects who admitted to keeping the foul-hooked fish and showed where they had been hooked  Tickets were issued and the fish were seized.

CO Tim Rosochacki was checking baited hunting locations in Cheboygan County when he encountered a 14- and a 7-year-old hunting on state land without adult supervision. Their mother was contacted and arrived on the scene. She explained that she had dropped the two boys off earlier and knew they needed an adult to be present. The mother was ticketed for allowing the youth to hunt unsupervised and warnings were given for the other violations.

DISTRICT 4

CO Tim Barboza responded to a RAP complaint of duck hunters hunting during the closed season on Croton Pond. CO Barboza was able to locate the two waterfowl hunters and articulated to them that they were hunting in the closed Southern Zone management area. He escorted the hunters back to the boat launch and cited them for hunting waterfowl closed season and seized the two mergansers they had.

CO Angela Greenway was patrolling the Haymarsh State Game Area campground for hunting activity and was flagged down by a camper who had heard someone yelling for help to the south towards the dam.  CO Greenway headed to the parking lot at the dam and met up with two hunters that had heard the call for help as well. CO Greenway and the hunters split up to cover more area and were able to locate two lost bowhunters a short time later. The two hunters had gone back to look for a lost water bottle and got turned around.

COs William Kinney and Bill Haskin were patrolling the Betsie River in Benzie County for salmon fishing activity. The COs responded to a complaint of five individuals illegally fishing within 300 feet of the Homestead Dam. Upon arrival, all five individuals were located still illegally fishing in the closed water. Citations were issued to the anglers for the violation.

CO Amanda Weaver participated in a joint operation with the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Traverse City Air Station. For this patrol, CO Weaver conducted a three-hour aerial patrol in a USCG helicopter over Benzie, Leelanau, and Grand Traverse Counties. The patrol focused on providing overhead coverage of the Platte and Bestie River systems, with special attention paid toward the Homestead Dam to address frequent violations. Ground units were available to respond in case CO Weaver witnessed any violations while flying overhead. The patrol provided a unique opportunity to view areas from a different vantage point and increase collaboration between state and federal organizations.

DISTRICT 5

CO Jeff Goss responded to an ORV personal injury accident on the ORV trail near the Gladwin Trailhead. Two dirt bikes were coming toward each other on a curve and collided. Complicating matters, the accident occurred approximately two miles from the nearest road. One rider had a compound leg fracture and the other suffered possible neck and shoulder injuries.  Gladwin County Sheriff’s Deputy Johnson as well as Secord and Billings township fire departments assisted with treating the patients and transporting them to the road where they were taken to a local hospital.

DISTRICT 6

No new reports.

DISTRICT 7

CO Carter Woodwyk received a complaint of a subject who was observed trespassing during the early antlerless deer season in Allegan County. While checking the location of the reported trespass, he located a treestand with a bait pile of minerals, apples, and salt lick nearby. CO Woodwyk followed up at the location in the archery season and located a hunter who admitted to throwing out more fresh bait, corn, and apples the day prior. The hunter admitted to knowing baiting was illegal in the Lower Peninsula. A citation was issued for the baiting violation.

CO James Nason was sitting stationary in his patrol truck checking a large block of fields for hunting activity in Kalamazoo County when a pickup truck passed him at a high rate of speed. The CO began to follow the vehicle and witnessed the operator fail to stop at a stop sign. CO Nason initiated his emergency lights to conduct a traffic stop, the pickup truck quickly turned into a farmhouse’s driveway. The male operator shut his truck off and quickly exited the vehicle and lit a cigarette. Upon making contact, the man was extremely hostile and irate for being stopped. He stated that the truck was his mom’s and that he was fixing it for her. The man also stated that he lived at this residence with his mother. Right after the man made these claims, the homeowner exited her home and informed CO Nason that the man in her driveway did not live there and that she had no idea who he was. CO Nason continued to ask for the man’s driver license, but he continuously refused to identify himself. CO Nason told the man that if he wouldn’t identify himself, that he would be arrested for obstruction. The man said, “Let’s go then.” While CO Nason was applying the handcuffs to the arrestee, he noticed the odor of intoxicants on the man’s breath. The man initially denied drinking anything that day and would not submit to SFSTs or a chemical test. It was also discovered that the subject’s license was suspended/revoked, and the man had multiple warrants out of Ottawa and Allegan counties. CO Nason transported the man to Borgess Hospital in Kalamazoo and reached an on-call judge who signed an affidavit search warrant for the man’s blood to be drawn for analysis. The man was then lodged in the Kalamazoo County Jail and is facing OWI and resist/obstruct charges.

CO Jackie Miskovich was patrolling Ravenna in Muskegon County when she heard on the radio of a tree that was possibly on fire in the Muskegon SGA that was just north of her. She patrolled to the area and met Moorland Fire there. Upon getting to the gate to get into the area, a truck was blocking the gate. Emergency personnel were able to run over some corn to gain access to the property and get back to the tree that was smoldering. After dealing with the tree and coming back out, CO Miskovich issued a citation to the individual for parking in front of an access gate that was posed with “no parking.”

DISTRICT 8

CO Chris Reynolds attended a Hunter Safety Class and Field Day at the Branch County Sportsman’s Club Heineman Range in Coldwater. CO Reynolds assisted with the classroom presentations and testing. CO Reynolds explained laws pertaining to hunting, fishing, and trapping.  After the class, CO Reynolds answered questions about hunting, fishing, marine, and ORV laws from the 26 students and parents in attendance.

CO John Byars was dispatched by Ingham County Central Dispatch to assist the sheriff’s office in a fight due to being the closest unit. CO Byars and a deputy arrived on scene at the same time. The aggressor had a rope around his neck which was removed. The suspect was arrested, and medical assistance was summoned. The Ingham County Sheriff’s Office investigated the complaint and will seek a warrant for the suspect’s arrest.

DISTRICT 9

COs Keven Luther, David Schaumburger, and Brandon Hartleben conducted a Hunter Education Field Day at the Outdoor Adventure Center in Detroit.

COs Danielle Zubek, Tom Peterson, and Sgt. Jason Becker assisted the White Lake Police Department in searching for a missing suicidal person. CO Zubek and Sgt. Becker searched the Cedar Island Lake at night without success and CO Peterson assisted the next day without success. It was later revealed that a family member found the deceased subject not far from his house.

While traveling on I-75, Sgt. Jason Becker witnessed two cars crash in front of him and were blocking the left lane in a construction zone. Sgt. Becker stopped and checked for injuries. Because all the MSP troopers were busy in the area, Sgt. Becker took the crash report and requested a tow truck to have the disabled vehicle removed from the freeway.

CO Brad Silorey was on patrol when he observed three hunters on state land in Macomb County. CO Silorey observed one hunter in hunter orange and two in camouflage. The hunter in orange was observed near a pond taking a shot at a goose. When CO Silorey approached and contacted the hunters, they stated that they had missed the goose. CO Silorey asked the hunters what exactly they were targeting, as none of the hunter’s garments were typical of small game hunters or waterfowl. One hunter stated that he only had a base license and was hunting small game, another hunter stated that he was hunting only waterfowl, and the third hunter stated that he was hunting both small game and waterfowl. During the check, multiple violations were found including failing to wear hunter orange, possession of toxic lead shot for waterfowl, and hunting waterfowl with an unplugged shotgun. The subject that took the shot at the goose was found to be in possession of lead shot and was cited for the violation. The subject who was only small game hunting was not wearing hunter orange and was cited for the violation. The third subject was in possession of a shotgun capable of holding more than three shells but was given a verbal warning due to only having three shells in his firearm at the time.

CO Brandon Hartleben came across what appeared to be a road-runoff in the early morning hours of a weekday patrol in Washtenaw County. The subject produced a badge during the initial contact indicating he was a police officer with Waterford Township. Upon initial inspection, the “Crime Prevention Officer” badge it did not appear to be authentic. Further questioning of the subject and observation of an untold amount of loose currency in a cooler in the back seat further raised the COs suspicions. CO Hartleben gained consent for a PBT of the subject, which resulted in a reading of 0.00. Once the wrecker arrived, the vehicle was pulled from the ditch and back onto the roadway. CO Hartleben observed what appeared to be a pistol holster on a belt sticking out from the side of the driver’s seat near the center console. Upon closer inspection, CO Hartleben observed that there was in fact a firearm in the holster. CO Hartleben placed the subject under arrest for felony carrying a concealed weapon, felon in possession of a firearm, and falsely representing as a peace officer. Seized from the vehicle were a loaded Smith & Wesson M&P 40, a loaded Smith & Wesson M&P Bodyguard 380, a TriStar 12GA pump-action shotgun and almost $17,000 in cash. Also seized was assorted police/military tactical gear, a wooden billy club, and a pair of handcuffs.  An in-custody report was completed, and the subject was arraigned on four felony counts and one misdemeanor.

CO Nicholas Ingersoll was patrolling the DTE Hot Ponds when he checked an angler who was having some success catching panfish. After checking the angler’s fish, it was determined that the angler had an extremely small largemouth bass mixed in the bunch. CO Ingersoll measured the bass, and it was determined it was five inches long. CO Ingersoll advised the angler of the size limit on largemouth bass and stated he was nine inches short and was issued a citation for possessing an undersized largemouth bass.

COs Andrew Monnich and Eric Smither were patrolling the Onsted SGA when they noticed a truck parked that they have had baiting issues with before. The COs came back that morning to check the hunter, but the truck was gone, so the COs decided to walk into the stand where they believed the subject was hunting and located bait at the treestand. The next morning the truck was parked in the same spot, so the COs walked in and contacted the hunter who claimed the bait was not his. This individual was also hunting with resident Michigan hunting licenses while being a Florida resident and buying resident licenses in Florida. Enforcement action was taken.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

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