Tuesday, January 31st, 2023
Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

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Cuffs & Collars: Field reports from Illinois Conservation Police CPOs

Northwest Zone – Captain Laura Petreikis

In DeKalb County, CPO Engledow was traveling down a road in a No Passing Zone when a vehicle passed his squad in the same direction. CPO Engledow conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle. While on the traffic stop, a K9 Unit arrived and conducted a sniff of the vehicle. The dog alerted to the presence of narcotics. CPO Engledow had all six occupants exit the vehicle and performed a search of the vehicle. There were small traces of cannabis spilled in the driver’s seat as well as open containers of alcohol in the passenger compartment. The individuals were questioned about the alcohol and any other narcotics. CPO Engledow then issued a passenger a citation for the opened alcohol. A written warning was issued to the driver for Disobeying No Passing Zone

In DeKalb County, CPO Engledow responded to DeKalb, along with ISP D15, when there was a report of multiple shots fired during the gathering of the unorganized “event.” It is speculated one subject shot toward the crowd and another subject from within the crowd fired gunshot rounds back toward the first suspect. Both subjects fled on foot and were not apprehended during the incident. CPO Engledow assisted with securing the scene, canvasing the area for the suspects, and assisting in making sure there were no residences or individuals struck by gunfire. An investigation is pending by DeKalb PD.

In LaSalle County, CPO Kaufman was notified by Starved Rock Park staff of a vehicle parked overnight at the boat ramp. CPO Kaufman found the vehicle, there was a cell phone sitting in the front seat. He contacted the local police agency in the individual’s hometown to conduct a welfare check. The individual had been missing for two days. The next day the individual was found dead in the Illinois River. The investigation into the cause of the death is on-going.

In LaSalle County, Sgt. Wire stopped a yacht on the Illinois River that had unreadable registration. The owner said that he owns five boats and the registration was at home. A check showed that the boat’s registration expired in 2021. The owner was issued a citation.

In LaSalle County, Sgt. Wire checked LaSalle Lake for individuals entering the area early. Four groups of individuals inside were fishing 15 minutes before opening time. Each group was issued a $195 citation.

In Winnebago County, CPO Swanson received a report of a South Beloit resident throwing food in his yard that was attracting wildlife. CPO Swanson met with the homeowner and educated him on the laws regarding feeding wildlife.

In Winnebago County, CPO Roesch receive information about two missing kayakers on the Sugar River near Colored Sands Forest Preserve. CPO Roesch responded with the boat. Both kayakers were located on the Sugar River in Wisconsin.

In Fulton County, CPO Thompson conducted hunting compliance checks on the Illinois River near Banner in rural Fulton County. While conducting surveillance near a boat ramp, CPO Thompson located a pair of teal hunters on the river. During a compliance check on the hunters, their boat and associated equipment, CPO Thompson determined the hunters were in violation of hunting with an unplugged shotgun, unlawful take of teal with an unlawful device and failure to maintain separate bag limits. CPO Thompson issued a citation and written warnings for the violations.

In Fulton County, CPO Thompson and CPOT Schmick conducted migratory waterfowl enforcement at Rice Lake SFWA. During the detail, CPOs conducted hunting compliance checks on several individuals engaged in teal hunting at the walk-in area. During a check, CPOs identified a group that had harvested teal but not maintained separate bag limits. In addition, two of the young men checked did not have hunting licenses and others did not possess a valid FOID card. As a result, several written warnings were issued for the aforementioned violations.

In McDonough County, CPO Elliott and CPOT Chandler completed an investigation into the unlawful fishing without permission and unlawful attempt to take turtles by use of an unlawful device. (hoop nets). Two subjects were identified as having placed nets on a landowner’s pond without permission to trap turtles. The subjects were subsequently contacted, interviewed, and issued citations for fishing without permission, and unlawful attempts to take turtles by use of an illegal device. Written warnings were issued for no fishing license, no commercial fishing license, criminal trespass to real property.

Northeast Zone – Capt. Eric Schreiber

In Grundy County, while conducting recreational boating enforcement on a river in eastern Grundy County, CPO Prasun stopped a vessel whose passenger was seated in an unauthorized position on the watercraft. After performing a safety check on the vessel, it was also determined the operator was not wearing a safety cut-off lanyard and there was not a good fire extinguisher on board. The operator was issued written warnings for the violations.

In Grundy County, while conducting recreational boat enforcement at a river in eastern Grundy County, CPO Prasun observed a child less than 13 years old who was not wearing a personal flotation device (PFD). It was also learned the operator was not wearing a safety cutoff lanyard, the vessel was overloaded and did not have valid registration. The operator was cited for the PFD violation and a written warning for the remaining offenses.

In Will County, while conducting recreational boat enforcement on a river in western Will County, CPO Prasun made boat stops on three separate vessels. One boat had a tow flag violation. A second boat had a passenger location violation and the operator was not wearing a safety cut-off lanyard. A third boat had no throwable personal flotation device. None of the vessels had a certificate of number on board. All three boat operators were issued written warnings for the violations.

In Will County, CPO Prasun conducted recreational boat enforcement at a river in southwestern Will County. During a boat safety inspection, it was learned the operator did not have a throwable personal flotation device on board, there was not a good fire extinguisher, and the battery terminals were not shielded. CPO Prasun issued the operator a written warning for the violations.

Central Zone – Capt. John Williamson

In Hancock County, CPO Wheatley assisted in providing detailed evidence to the Hamilton Police Department referencing a string of thefts occurring in the area. CPO Wheatley was a victim of one of these thefts and was able to provide footage of criminal acts taking place with solid identification of the perpetrators. CPO Wheatley provided backup as Hamilton Police took one of the subjects into custody. CPO Wheatley was not deprived of any of his belongings.

In Cass County, CPO Wahlbrink discovered a local Copi (silver carp) processing business had forgotten to purchase their aquatic life dealer wholesale license for the year. After speaking with the individual in charge of purchasing the license and reviewing the business’s license purchase history, a written warning was issued for the offense.

In Morgan County, Sgt. Gilmer and CPO Wahlbrink were called to assist in helping save a stranded duck hunter with an incapacitated boat on Federal Refuge land at Meredosia Bay.

In Sangamon County, CPO Wahlbrink investigated a complaint of a trap in a residential area in Springfield. An unset conibear (body-gripping) trap was later located by CPO Wahlbrink at the edge of a resident’s privacy fence. It was discovered that the resident had been dealing with an animal digging in his yard and took matters into his own hands. The individual was educated on how to trap the animal legally, without harming other animals in the area.

In Moultrie County, CPO Moody arrested a Mattoon man on the Lake Shelbyville property on two outstanding warrants out of Coles County. One warrant was for possession of meth and one was for driving on a revoked driver’s license. The man also received a written warning for fishing with no valid license.

In Shelby County, CPO Viverito was called to assist Shelby County Sheriff’s Office with his K9 Partner, Hank, involving a meth search warrant of the residence. CPO Viverito assisted with perimeter security until the house was secure. K9 Hank was utilized to screen the house after the initial search. Hank alerted to locations where meth was located and removed.

In McLean County, CPO Workman responded to a welfare check on a homeless family campsite. CPO Workman investigated the campsite and established the family had the essentials for their kids.

In McLean County, CPO Workman responded to a domestic complaint in Moraine View SRA. CPO Workman patrolled the area and located the suspect and made an arrest. CPO Workman transported the individual to the McLean County Jail.

In Vermilion County, CPO Sanford and CPOT Post observed a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed through state lands in Vermilion Co. CPO Sanford and CPOT Post followed the vehicle and observed numerous lane violations. A traffic stop was conducted on the vehicle and it was determined the driver was utilizing a mobile device while driving. The driver was issued a citation for the mobile device violation and a written warning for the lane violations.

South Zone – Capt. Mark Folden

In Clinton County, CPO Macias was contacted by a person who fished Carlyle Lake regularly. The person sent the CPO a video of another subject using an illegal “umbrella jig” on Carlyle Lake. An investigation is pending.

In St. Clair County, CPOT Struble, CPO Johnson, and CPO Goetten observed a vehicle parked at FHSP. As they approached the vehicle as uniformed officers, a male subject ran to the passenger seat, shut the door, and began making furtive movements. He was found to be in possession of cocaine. A search of the vehicle revealed more suspected cocaine in the driver’s purse. The evidence was seized and enforcement action is pending crime lab results and consultation with the St. Clair County States Attorney.

CPO Ray spoke 68 students at a hunter safety class in St. Clair County.

In St. Clair County, CPO Sievers and CPOT Matthews were en route to the Frank Holten State Park. While getting fuel, a male subject in the store stated that he was suicidal and that the manager was calling for an ambulance. CPO Sievers and CPOT Matthews stayed with the subject until the ambulance and Cahokia Heights Police arrived on scene. The male subject voluntarily went into the ambulance to be taken to a hospital.

In St. Clair County, CPO Wright and CPO Goetten attempted to stop a vehicle for a traffic offense. The driver fled the stop. He was later apprehended by the CPOs and assisting agencies. A loaded 9mm handgun was recovered. The subject was arrested for fleeing and eluding and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. It was later determined the subject fled from another CPO the day before.

In Perry County, CPO Williams and CPO Lewis were notified of a potential missing/suicidal male subject at Pyramid State Park in the area of the Denmark Unit. Attempts to locate the missing subject started on Sept. 5, 2022. The missing subject’s vehicle was located early morning of Sept. 6, 2022, with the help of Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, Perry County Sheriff’s Office and Illinois State Police. The missing subject was unable to be located. CPO Kyle Williams and CPO Lewis responded to the Denmark unit where the vehicle was located. Upon further search of the area, CPO’s were able to locate the missing person. The person tried to evade CPO’s while attempting to make contact. Using Crisis Intervention Tactics, CPO’s were able to talk the person from the area and seek medical treatment. The subject had suffered minor injuries and expressed signs of dehydration and fatigue. The male subject was transported to Pinckneyville Community Hospital for medical treatment.

In Jefferson County, CPO Tapley and CPOT Duzan checked a group of hunters at Ten Mile Creek Fish and Wildlife Area. One hunter was found to have an uncased shotgun in the vehicle. A citation was issued.

In Jasper County, CPO Hyatt received a complaint from a fisherman at Newton Lake of a boat with a big motor running. The boat was located and the operator was issued a citation for running a motor higher than the 25 hp allowed on the lake.

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