1/12/2020 - 1/25/2020

DISTRICT 1

Conservation Officer (CO) Zach Painter was on patrol in Gogebic County and observed three snowmobiles cross the highway in front of him without stopping prior to crossing. CO Painter had to slow down quickly in order to avoid hitting the third snowmobile. CO Painter stopped the three snowmobiles and noticed several signs of impairment with two of the snowmobilers. CO Painter conducted standard field sobriety tests (SFSTs) on the two operators. Both operators were placed under arrest for operating a snowmobile while intoxicated and were cited for careless operation as well. CO Painter was assisted by the Michigan State Police (MSP).

COs conducted a group snowmobile patrol in Gogebic County to address loud snowmobile complaints and careless operation issues. Nine officers participated in the patrol over the holiday weekend. Fifteen citations were issued along with 60 verbal warnings. Approximately 500 snowmobilers were contacted. One subject was lodged for operating while his driver’s license was suspended. Two operators were lodged for operating while intoxicated.

CO Anna Viau, along with several other officers from throughout the state, attended Off-Trail Snowmobile Training near Twin Lakes, taught by Officer Dave Tembreull of the U.S. Forest Service. Officer Tembreull taught the COs various techniques that could be used when responding to a search and rescue operation off snowmobile trails.

CO Shannon Kritz and Sergeant (Sgt). Brian Bacon were on snowmobile patrol when they observed a single snowmobile track leading into a remote lake in Dickinson County. The COs contacted two anglers and noticed several largemouth bass laying on the ice near their ice fishing holes. Initially, the anglers denied catching the bass and blamed it on a separate group of anglers that had been on the lake earlier in the morning. However, once confronted with the fact that they were the only snowmobile track leading into the lake, they eventually admitted to catching the bass. A total of 11 bass were found at various ice fishing holes. Both anglers were cited for possessing bass out of season.

CO Jeffrey Dell and Sgt. Brian Bacon conducted a snowmobile enforcement patrol in Dickinson County. Numerous violations were observed and addressed including three unregistered snowmobiles, four snowmobiles without snow trail permits, and one snowmobile with exhausts exceeding the sound decibel limit. Enforcement action was taken for failing to purchase trail permits.

CO Zach Painter was on patrol in Gogebic County working a snowmobile patrol dedicated to careless operation with U.S. Forest Service Officer Josh Lopac. The two officers observed several snowmobiles go through an intersection at a high rate of speed, failing to stop at a stop sign. The officers stopped the snowmobiles and noticed several signs of impairment with two of the operators. CO Painter conducted standard field sobriety tests (SFSTs) on the two operators. One of the operators was placed under arrest for operating a snowmobile while intoxicated and careless operation of a snowmobile. Officer Lopac issued a citation to another member of the group for careless operation.

CO Dave Miller worked a stop sign along a snowmobile trail due to complaints from property owners. Subjects living in a subdivision have narrowly been missing snowmobiles who disregard a stop sign leading into the area. CO Miller stopped numerous sleds for failing to stop, issued four citations, and gave numerous verbal warnings.

CO Dave Miller checked numerous fishermen on Keweenaw Bay. CO Miller observed a seven-year-old as he broke his fishing rod and was still able to land a 6-pound Coho.

CO John Kamps was first on scene to a snowmobile crash causing injury. The individual was coming around a corner on the trail when he lost control of the sled and struck a tree. CO Kamps provided medical attention until EMS and back-up units were able to arrive. The individual was transported to the hospital where he was determined to be in stable condition but suffered a serious head injury.

DISTRICT 2

COs Steve Butzin and Chris Lynch served several individuals arrest warrants for taking deer during firearm deer season without licenses.

COs Chris Lynch and Steve Butzin were the first unit on scene to a domestic violence call. It was reported the subject used a knife in the assault and had access to firearms in the residence. The victim was safely removed from the house and the suspect was nowhere to be found. The suspect was located just down the road from the house walking out of the woods. The COs assisted MSP in the arrest of the suspect down the road.

COs Chris Lynch and Steve Butzin conducted a meat processor inspection and a suspicious record was located. The hunter was interviewed who confessed to shooting the 8-point buck without a license. The illegal deer and crossbow used to kill the deer was seized by CO John Kamps in Marquette County, where it was held by a family member of the hunter. A report will be submitted by the Delta County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

CO Mark Zitnik received a call for a motorist on M-28 stuck in a ditch, blocking lanes of traffic. The CO responded and conducted traffic control in the snowstorm until the MSP and a tow truck arrived.

COs Andrea Dani, Mark Zitnik, and Alger County Sheriff’s deputies conducted a group snowmobile patrol in the Central Upper Peninsula. Over 100 contacts were made with snowmobile operators. There was a total of 17 citations issued for no possession of a trail permit, failure to attach a trail permit, unregistered snowmobile, failure to display snowmobile registration, and careless operation. Most snowmobilers were glad to see the officers keeping the snowmobile trails safe.

COs Stephen Butzin and Mark Zitnik were on snowmobile patrol during a busy holiday weekend when dispatch called for an officer to respond to a domestic incident in progress. The closest unit was 20 minutes away, so the two COs set off on snowmobiles to handle the dispute in progress. The COs were on scene within minutes. They secured the scene and assisted the MSP trooper with the investigation upon his arrival.

CO Robert Freeborn was on routine patrol when local dispatch advised of a snowmobile Personal Injury (PI) accident several miles south of his location. CO Freeborn arrived on scene just as EMS and the local fire department did. While CO Freeborn was grabbing his gear to head to the scene, a second call from local dispatch advised of another snowmobile PI just north of their location on the same trail. CO Freeborn advised dispatch that he would handle the second PI and headed to the scene. Once at the trail crossing, CO Freeborn rode to the scene with local EMS and the fire department. It was determined that the snowmobiler failed to negotiate a turn and struck a large red pine. The snowmobiler was transported out by EMS while CO Freeborn stayed on scene to document the scene and interview witnesses for the report and UD-10. Both snowmobilers suffered serious injuries, which called for one to be evacuated by a medical helicopter. Both snowmobilers ended up surviving and are currently recovering.

CO Robert Freeborn overheard local officers call out at a residence and ask for assistance. CO Freeborn arrived on scene shortly after and found the officers had just taken into custody a mentally ill subject who was out of control. CO Freeborn followed the officers to the emergency room (ER) and assisted them once at the ER since the subject was very agitated and resisted the officer’s prior. The subject received help at the hospital for his mental health needs.

COs Andrea Dani and Mark Zitnik attended the Sportsman Coalition Meeting at the Cusino Wildlife Research Facility in Shingleton. Attendance was higher than expected given the poor driving conditions. DNR Wildlife Technician Don Brown led the meeting with a presentation regarding the 2019 hunting seasons. Hunter feedback was a major focus of the meeting regarding the newly implemented regulations, as well as hunter successes and concerns. Much interest was shown regarding the decline in the ruffed grouse population in recent years. Many suggestions were brought forward from the public regarding fur-bearer possession limits to help alleviate the decrease in ruffed grouse, as well as the potential of altering Deer Management Unit boundaries.

CO Justin Vinson monitored a busy snowmobile intersection known for accidents and careless operation. Several riders were witnessed running the stop sign at the intersection of the trail and roadway. Citations were issued for careless operation.

CO Justin Vinson, along with the Luce County Sheriff’s Department, were patrolling for snowmobile activity near Newberry when central dispatch called out a snowmobile accident with an unconscious but breathing rider on Trail 431 in western Luce County. CO Vinson, Luce County Sheriff’s Department, and Luce County EMS responded to the scene. Upon arrival the victim was conscious, however, complaining of head, and shoulder pain. First aid was rendered to keep the subject warm, and the trail was closed to secure the scene. EMS arrived shortly after and the woman was taken to Newberry Helen Joy Hospital.

CO Mike Olesen and Sgt. Calvin Smith patrolled Munuscong Bay in Chippewa County during a local tournament. The COs contacted over 300 anglers during the patrol, with many enjoying success. Fishing regulation compliance was very high with only a couple of warnings given for snowmobile registration violations.

DISTRICT 3

COs Tim Rosochacki, Matt Theunick, Kyle Cherry, Tom Oberg, and Sgt. Mark DePew along with the Warden’s Show TV cameramen completed a snowmobile patrol in Otsego County looking for violations in and around the Otsego Lake area. Over 200 riders were contacted with 19 verbal warnings made, eight civil infraction tickets issued, seven misdemeanors, and one felony arrest made.

CO Tom Oberg was on patrol when Otsego County Central Dispatch advised of a domestic assault in progress. CO Oberg was only a couple minutes from the address and responded. CO Oberg was first on the scene when he located two subjects outside of the residence verbally arguing. CO Oberg noticed one of the subjects was lying on the ground and appeared to be intoxicated. Shortly after the COs arrival, the Otsego County Sheriff’s deputies and MSP troopers arrived. CO Oberg and an MSP trooper were standing near the intoxicated man who was told to remain on the ground and not to move. However, the subject became aggressive towards the officers who arrested him for obstructing. In addition, he was also charged with domestic violence. Charges are pending with the Otsego County Prosecutor’s Office.

COs Tom Oberg and Tim Rosochacki responded to a call from Otsego County Central Dispatch of a hiker who was hiking with a group of friends and began having medical issues in the Pigeon River Country. The COs were given a brief description of the hiker’s whereabouts, due to almost non-existing cell phone service in the area. The COs went as far as they could in their patrol truck in the deep snow. They walked up a hill and saw movement about a half-mile down the foot trail. They located the subject who was having issues with an elevated heart rate due to a recent surgery. The subject did not know exactly where he was, and his cell phone was dead. When asked about his friends, he stated he was hiking with a group of friends from an online group, and they had left him there. The COs slowly walked the subject back to their patrol vehicle where he was transported back to his vehicle where the group of hikers he was with were already back and loading up their gear. The group of hikers stated that the subject told them to leave him. The group was advised it was not the best idea to leave someone alone having medical issues and a dead cell phone in unfamiliar territory in freezing conditions.

CO Tim Rosochacki was patrolling near Mullet Lake when a report came in from a shore-based observer who believed they witnessed a snowmobile go through the ice. CO Rosochacki was first on scene and contacted the reporting party. CO Rosochacki then took his patrol snowmobile and contacted a group of anglers near the suspected location and quickly determined there was no one in the water and that the subject onshore had misinterpreted a homemade ice shanty for a snowmobile.

CO Dan Liestenfeltz was patrolling Montmorency County on his patrol snowmobile when he observed a snowmobiler operating on the wrong side of the road against traffic. The snowmobiler then turned down a side street still operating against traffic. CO Liestenfeltz was able to stop the snowmobiler and it was determined that the operator of the snowmobile had a suspended driver’s license, as well as a statewide warrant. While talking with the subject, CO Liestenfeltz could smell a strong odor of alcohol. CO Liestenfeltz placed the subject in custody for the warrant and driving while license suspended. An MSP trooper transported the subject to the jail. At the jail, CO Liestenfeltz conducted SFSTs, in which the subject did not pass. This was the subject’s sixth operating while intoxicated (OWI) charge. Charges are currently pending with the Montmorency County Prosecutor’s Office for driving while license suspended and felony OWI.

CO Dan Liestenfeltz responded to a single vehicle injury accident in Albert Township of Montmorency County. Upon arriving, it was determined that the subject had slid off the roadway due to icy road conditions into a ditch and struck a small tree. The subject suffered minor injuries from the impact and when the airbag deployed. The subject refused to be transported to the hospital and the scene was cleared with no further issues.

COs Dan Liestenfeltz, Sidney Collins, Jon Sheppard, and Jessie Curtis conducted a group snowmobile patrol focusing on sound enforcement. The COs issued numerous tickets for snowmobile exhausts exceeding legal limit of 88 decibels. Tickets and verbal warnings were given for failing to have the snowmobile trail permit, fail to register, and careless driving on a snowmobile.

CO Sidney Collins assisted a snowmobiler who had broken down on the trail with no cell service. CO Collins gave the fellow snowmobiler a ride to their house so they could pick up the disabled sled.

CO Jon Sklba assisted with a call of a subject that went through the ice on Grand Lake. The subject and his two friends who were not from the area were unaware of the poor ice conditions on Grand Lake this year. While moving to a different spot on the lake, one of the snowmobiles went through the ice. Two of the subjects were able to get away from the sinking snowmobile, but the third subject was unable to get out of the hole created by the snowmobile. Due to the quick response of emergency personnel, the subject was located and able to be recovered alive, along with his two friends. The subject was transported to a local hospital and discharged later that evening.

DISTRICT 4

CO Troy Ludwig patrolled the Wexford County snowmobile trail system. While patrolling, the CO observed two individuals fail to stop for a stop sign on a trail that enters onto a public roadway. The CO contacted the operators and they both admitted that they had seen the stop sign but decided not to stop. Citations were issued to both individuals for careless operation of a snowmobile.

COs Patrick McManus and Amanda McCurdy met at a gas station early in the day to discuss their patrol plans for the snowmobile trail that runs through Leelanau County. While they were meeting, a snowmobile drove into the gas station parking lot and the COs noticed it did not display a registration or valid trail permit. Upon contacting the subject, it was confirmed that they had not updated their registration after buying the machine and had not yet purchased a trail permit. The COs also learned that the subject had a misdemeanor warrant for their arrest out of Benzie County. The subject was taken into custody and transported to the Benzie County jail; they also received a citation for invalid snowmobile registration.

CO Tim Barboza heard a call from Central Dispatch of a suicidal male with a machete threatening to cut his son’s head off and kill himself. CO Barboza responded with Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies to the residence where the man was located. The CO and deputies cleared the house and found the man in a back room. The suspect was arrested on current warrants and was taken into custody without incident.

COs Tim Barboza and Jeff Ginn responded to a Report all Poaching (RAP) complaint of a deer processor in Newaygo County not returning the processed deer to the owners. When the COs arrived at the processor, they found that the business was in the process of closing permanently and that power had been lost in the building. The COs located the rotting carcasses of approximately 13 deer in the freezer, that were still being processed and packaged. The COs contacted the Department of Agriculture food inspector. The COs assisted with photographic evidence of the facility and the inspection. The inspector closed the processor down and placed the facility on quarantine and seized the deer and processed meat, which was unfit for human consumption.

CO Jeff Ginn of Newaygo County was investigating a set of vehicle tracks which parked along the side of a forest road. He located sled marks in the snow and followed the trail into the woods. After almost 100 yards he located a blood trail. CO Ginn followed the trail back to a nearby residence and located a large bait pile behind a pole barn. Upon contacting with the homeowner, CO Ginn was able to obtain a confession. She explained she had shot a doe at night feeding from the bait pile. Prosecution is being sought for the violations.

DISTRICT 5

During Tip-Up-Town patrol, CO Joshua Wright observed six tip-ups set on the ice with nobody around. One of the tip-ups had a flag up when the CO came across it. CO Wright contacted some nearby anglers who indicated the tip-ups belonged to a couple subjects that had left the ice. CO Wright waited for over 15 more minutes before the subjects returned to the ice. The men admitted to leaving their lines unattended, one of them further admitted that he “was a greedy angler” and he didn’t want to pull his lines while he was eating his lunch inside the cabin. Further investigation revealed that the men had two more lines in the water inside the shanty that were also unattended. The men also had an expired ORV license for the machine that they were using. CO Wright issued a citation for leaving their lines unattended and gave them a verbal warning for an expired ORV registration.

CO Mike Hearn attended a National Wild Turkey Federation banquet in Kalkaska County. There were approximately 125 attendees.

DISTRICT 6

CO Joe Myers received some information regarding a bobcat that was possibly taken illegally. The CO interviewed the hunter and based on the answers given to him, the CO knew it did not add up. After further interviewing, the man confessed to shooting the bobcat out of season and without a license. Warrants are being sought.

CO Joe Myers was patrolling the Au Sable State Forest in an area that has many protected wetlands when he noticed fresh damage. The CO was able to catch up with several of the snowmobiles, ORVs, and mud trucks that were operating in the area illegally. Tickets were issued for operating in these protected areas, registration issues, and safety equipment violations. This is the second group of operators that CO Myers has dealt with in the last few months.

CO Adam Beuthin received a Report All Poaching (RAP) complaint about a subject in Saginaw County who had shot a deer during archery season without a license. The CO was told the subject shot a 7-point buck during archery season and did not buy a license for the deer until December 31. It was confirmed that the subject’s only license purchase for 2019 was on December 31. During the interview, the subject confessed to shooting the deer without a license. A warrant was issued through Saginaw County Prosecutor’s Office for the violation.

DISTRICT 7

CO Travis Dragomer walked into a taxidermist and heard a saw operating. CO Dragomer observed a deer head that was being sawed in two, in attempt to skull cap the deer. CO Dragomer observed that the 13-point antlered deer head was fully intact and was tagged with an Iowa kill tag. The suspect who brought the deer in was still there and was interviewed on scene. The suspect admitted to shooting the 13-point antlered deer in Iowa and bringing the deer back to Michigan before processing it. The full unprocessed body of the deer was located and seized from a nearby residence. The deer head and body were seized and sent to the lab for disease testing. A citation was written for transporting/possessing an out-of-state deer into Michigan illegally.

CO Jackie Miskovich was tipped off about an individual in possession of one or more raccoons. After doing more research on the individual in question, there were multiple photos found of him in possession of raccoons. CO Miskovich responded to the residence and made contact at which time she found that the raccoon was free to roam in the resident’s bedroom and bathroom. Further investigation revealed that the subjects had taken in multiple animals in the past to rehabilitate them. These individuals did not have a permit to rehabilitate raccoons or other wild animals and did not have appropriate housing. Enforcement action is pending in the Oceana County court. The raccoon was confiscated and brought to a permitted rehabilitation facility.

CO Jackie Miskovich was patrolling Muskegon County when she noticed snowmobile tracks down a Consumers Energy powerline. She then noticed two snowmobiles that were stopped on a hill. CO Miskovich patrolled out of sight and waited for the snowmobilers to exit the powerline. As they approached the road, both snowmobiles did not have current trail permits. CO Miskovich asked the snowmobilers if they knew they were trespassing on Consumers property to which they stated, “Everyone snowmobiles through here.”  CO Miskovich explained how just because everyone does it, it doesn’t make it right. A citation was issued for no trail permit and a warning was given for riding in an area closed to snowmobiles.

CO Casey Varriale was patrolling the White Pine Trail in Cedar Springs in the County of Kent when he witnessed a snowmobile operating without a valid registration and trail permit. CO Varriale attempted to stop the operator, but the operator increased speed, drove through an intersection without stopping, and fled from the CO. As the subject pulled into his garage, CO Varriale finally made contact. Action was taken for failure to obtain a trail permit, fail to stop for a police officer, and for operating an unregistered snowmobile.

CO Richard Cardenas was checking ice anglers on Clear Lake when he encountered a subject who was unable to provide a fishing license. A subsequent check did not locate any current fishing license but did locate a valid warrant for his arrest. A citation was issued for the violation and he was lodged on his warrant.

CO Sam Schluckbier investigated suspicious information regarding a set of 11-point antlers located at a local taxidermy. The owner of the antlers was interviewed and admitted to shooting the deer on the opening day of firearm deer season without a license. He also failed to get permission from his neighbor before tracking and retrieving the deer on the neighbor’s property. He then gutted and dragged the deer back to his house before leaving to obtain a license. The subject claimed he was too busy to buy a license prior to going out hunting. The deer meat and antlers were confiscated, and a report and warrant request has been submitted to the Allegan County Prosecutor’s Office for review. The subject could be facing over $7,000 in fines and reimbursement for illegally killing the deer.

CO Carter Woodwyk conducted a taxidermy inspection in Allegan County where he discovered a whitetail deer head that was tagged with a Nebraska kill tag. The condition of the head violated Michigan’s Cervidae importation law. The head and antlers were immediately seized and submitted to a laboratory for disease testing. An interview with the suspect revealed he has extensive knowledge on chronic wasting disease and Michigan’s importation law regarding Cervidae. Charges are being sought through the Allegan County prosecutor for the illegal importation of an out-of-state harvested deer.

CO Carter Woodwyk was patrolling near the Allegan Dam when he observed a truck that had driven over a barricade and was attempting to do a hill climb near the parking lot. CO Woodwyk stopped the vehicle as the operator was attempting to drive up an illegal hill climb. The driver insisted since the area had no sign posted against entry that he should not receive a citation. Even after the CO pointed out the cement curb the driver went over to get to this area, he still insisted he needed a sign to be posted to inform him of the illegality of his actions. A citation was issued for operating in a closed area.

CO Chris Holmes assisted the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office on a traffic stop where two suspects fled from the vehicle. A stolen handgun was located in the vehicle. CO Holmes assisted K-9 deputies with the track and located the two suspects hiding about 100 yards from the initial traffic stop. Both subjects were arrested on multiple warrants and firearms charges.

CO Kyle McQueer was patrolling the snowmobile trail in Barry County when he observed two individuals on a snowmobile approaching him. Neither individual was wearing a helmet, the snowmobile did not have a trail permit and was not registered. Upon stopping the snowmobile, it was determined the operator was only 15 years of age, the passenger was only 16 years of age, and neither had snowmobile safety certificates. CO McQueer contacted the parents of the operator of the snowmobile and advised them of the situation. A citation was issued to the parents for the violation and several verbal warnings were given.

DISTRICT 8

CO John Byars noticed two snowmobiles operating on a roadway illegally. The CO conducted a stop on the snowmobiles. One operator did not have a helmet, both snowmobiles were missing registrations, and both operators were suspended. During the stop one operator walked away and the CO could not locate him. The CO called other units to the scene and set up a perimeter. A K-9 unit arrived on the scene and tracked the suspect shortly after arriving in the back yard of a neighbor’s house. The suspect was taken into custody and citations were issued for multiple offenses.

CO Nick Wellman finished an investigation that carried over from last week that started as a suspicious tag on a set of antlers at a taxidermist. In all, the investigation yielded eight deer taken unlawfully over the course of three seasons. Violations included taking several bucks without licenses, non-residents committing license fraud, and lending/borrowing tags. Over a dozen charges are being sought for several individuals in Michigan and Indiana.

COs Nick Wellman and Jim Nason assisted Michigan State Police (MSP) with an alleged sex offender taking pictures of kids on a playground in Branch County. The suspect had fled the area when confronted. CO Wellman arrived on scene and helped track down the suspect. After following up on other leads and talking to neighbors, COs Wellman and Nason contacted a suspect who they recognized as having several warrants. CO Wellman arrested the man on felony and misdemeanor warrants.

While patrolling Branch County, CO Jim Nason saw a vehicle parked in a secluded area. He observed the vehicle travel a short distance through a parking lot and then come to a stop. CO Nason approached the vehicle on foot to check on the occupant’s well-being. It was apparent the operator of the vehicle had been drinking and CO Nason conducted field sobriety tests. A preliminary breath test showed a blood alcohol content of .230. The subject was arrested for operating under the influence. While at the Branch County Jail awaiting a breath test, the subject stated that he was “getting angry” and complained of chest pain. CO Nason transported the man to the hospital in Coldwater where medical personnel conducted multiple tests. CO Nason obtained a blood draw on the man to be sent to the lab for testing. The suspect was released from the hospital and lodged.

CO Jim Nason arrived at a residence in Branch County to pick up a female subject on a DNR issued warrant. The female’s boyfriend stated that she was not home and directed CO Nason to another residence a short drive away. Once arriving at the second residence, the homeowner stated that the female in question was back at the house CO Nason had just came from. Branch County Sheriff’s deputies met CO Nason back at the first address. The female’s boyfriend stated again that she wasn’t home, and CO Nason informed the man that if he was harboring the individual, he could be lodged in jail as well. After a few minutes, the man went inside and sent out his girlfriend. The subject was arrested and lodged in the Branch County Jail for failing to appear on a misdemeanor citation.

COs Ed Rice and Christopher Reynolds attended a community engagement event in Hillsdale County hosted by Hillsdale County Commissioner Ruth Brown. The event was streamed live and allowed for COs Rice and Reynolds to reach out to those in the community who were unable to be in attendance. The COs provided insight into their day-to-day responsibilities, the scope of their duties as conservation officers, and addressed several law enforcement related concerns in Hillsdale County over the last few months. It was a positive and beneficial interaction for both the COs and the community.

CO Larn Strawn responded to a call of a deer trapped in a resident’s basement window egress well. Upon arrival, CO Strawn discovered an antlerless deer had fallen into the basement window well and could not get out. The homeowner had already placed a sheet of plywood behind the deer to prevent the deer from breaking the window. CO Strawn devised a plan for safely removing the deer, which was healthy, lively, and certainly motivated to get out. CO Strawn placed a large archery target into the window well and gently prodded the deer with a catch pole. As hoped, the deer was able to use the target as a step and bounded out of the hole. The deer was uninjured and ran off into the woods.

DISTRICT 9

COs Keven Luther and Ariel Young presented at a Hunter Education field day in Dearborn. The two COs answered questions and presented proper firearm handling techniques while utilizing the laser-shot trailer. CO Luther then worked the DNR booth at the Detroit Boat Show with Corporal Ivan Perez. The two contacted over 300 boat show visitors. The two COs answered questions and informed the public on the importance of personal floatation devices and other marine safety rules and regulations.

CO David Schaumburger swore to two warrants for two anglers who had taken an over limit of walleye. The anglers posted a limit on Facebook live, which the CO viewed, then the CO found the pair out fishing again in the evening with another limit of walleye.

CO Ariel Young was travelling back to her residence after her shift when a car on the highway lost control, striking two vehicles before ending up in the ditch. The accident happened just in front of an MSP trooper and CO Young. Both officers stopped to check on the people involved and maintain a safe scene until emergency medical services could arrive to check out the driver who was in the ditch. CO Young helped with traffic control after it was determined everyone was okay.

CO Bob Watson was on snowmobile patrol and contacted a group of snowmobilers riding along the Wadhams to Avoca Trail which is closed to snowmobiles and other motorized vehicles. Violations encountered were careless operation, no trail permit, and fail to display a valid registration. Two of the three adult riders were cited for careless operation.

CO Luke Robare was watching anglers at the Holloway Dam from his truck when he observed an angler catch a walleye. The subject netted the fish and when the fish was out of the net, CO Robare could clearly see that the fish had been snagged in the belly. CO Robare waited and observed the subject put the snagged walleye, which was now bleeding from the belly, onto his stringer and continue to fish. CO Robare eventually contacted the individual who retained the snagged fish. The angler initially denied that he had hooked the walleye in the belly, but eventually admitted that he knew the fish was not legally hooked. CO Robare issued the subject a citation for retaining a fish that was not hooked in the mouth.

CO Breanna Reed investigated an unvalidated tag found at a local taxidermist during an inspection. CO Reed attempted to contact the subject at his residence to clear up some questions she had. CO Reed left her card with an individual at the residence and requested he call her. During a phone conversation, the subject stated he shot the deer on November 19; however, the tag was not purchased until November 20. CO Reed later met with the subject who confessed to shooting the 8-point deer without having the proper license. A report will be submitted to the prosecutor’s office requesting charges for take deer no license.

CO Kris Kiel received a call from a retired hunter safety instructor that holds a rabbit round-up fundraiser every year for the Memphis High School baseball team. Through registration fees, the fundraiser is to help the team buy uniforms and equipment. An animal welfare group found out about the tournament and sent hundreds of threats, including death threats, to the gentleman’s family and Memphis High School. CO Kiel as well as an MSP trooper attended the weigh in. Over 100 participants harvested approximately 500 rabbits. The fundraiser was a complete success and no incidents occurred. Over $2,000 will be donated to the high school’s baseball team and some of the rabbits were donated to local churches in the area.

COs Mike Drexler and Brandon Hartleben were on patrol in Washtenaw County when they observed a snowmobile operating on the roadway. As the COs approached and activated the emergency lights for a traffic stop, the snowmobiler pulled over, shut off the engine, and started digging out his wallet. When the COs asked if he knew why they were stopping him, the subject stated, “Because I’m not supposed to be on the roadway.”  A civil infraction citation was issued for no trail sticker and several verbal warnings were issued.

CO Nicholas Ingersoll responded to a call of a woman running into houses asking for the homeowner to call 911 because her husband was trying to hurt her. CO Ingersoll arrived on scene and assisted a Monroe County Sheriff’s deputy who was talking to the woman in a neighbor’s house. While the deputy was speaking with her, she started to get agitated. During the contact, the deputy asked her to step outside, and at which point she refused and started to move farther into the neighbor’s residence. At this point, the deputy attempted to escort her out of the residence to talk to her outside away from the neighbor’s two young children. She pulled away and fell to the ground. She tucked her arms under her chest and refused to leave the residence.  She was handcuffed and taken to the Monroe County Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation.

COs Andrew Monnich and Eric Smither were out of the county getting service done on a snowmobile when they received a call from a local informant stating that a known poacher was just seen loading up two deer in the bed of his truck and heading for a state highway. The COs were hours away but were able to request assistance through Lenawee Central Dispatch. An MSP trooper soon located the vehicle and pulled over the suspect’s vehicle near the residence. The suspect had no deer in the truck and claimed it was just rabbits that they just dumped down the road. With the help of Cambridge Township and Clinton Police Departments and MSP, information was gained as to where two whitetail bucks were dumped in a field a little way from the residence. Cambridge Township Police Department was able to take their department ORV a mile back in a farm field and locate the animals and collect pictures and evidence for the COs. The bucks were rather fresh with the heads cut off and neither had been gutted or butchered. The known poacher was arrested by MSP on a DNR warrant from earlier that fall and lodged in the Lenawee County Jail. The COs arrived back in the county and met with the suspect in the jail where they interviewed him about the deer that had been dumped and where they came from. After a lengthy interview, the COs were able to gain a confession that in the last few days of antlerless season the suspect had shot the bucks and cut the heads off. He had two friends use their tags on the deer. The COs located the deer heads and followed up with the two friends who had tagged the deer. Charges are being submitted to the Lenawee County Prosecutor’s Office for review including taking antlered deer out of season, borrow/loan sell tags to another, illegal dumping on farmland, and recreational trespass.

 



Related Documents
CO Bi-weekly Reports 1/12/2020 - 1/25/2020 PDF icon