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Conservation Officer (CO) Byron Parks was checking anglers on opening day of trout season when a call came over dispatch regarding a suicidal subject with a firearm. While enroute to the call, it was reported that the subject had left his residence and walked back into the woods. CO Parks arrived on scene and met with an Ontonagon County deputy. Both officers searched the woods behind the home but could not locate the subject. After about an hour of searching they returned to the subject’s house and were able to locate him hiding behind a refrigerator. The subject was taken to the hospital for an evaluation.

CO Byron Parks was checking Courtney Lake in Ontonagon County when backup was requested by an Ontonagon County deputy. The deputy was responding to an assault complaint that had occurred earlier in the day. The subject was interviewed and eventually taken into custody for assault. CO Parks assisted the deputy in transporting the subject to the Ontonagon County Jail.

COs Brian Lasanen and Doug Hermanson assisted the Michigan Trails and Recreation Alliance of Land and the Environment (MI TRALE) off-road vehicle (ORV) group with teaching sixth grade Lake Linden students ORV safety. The class was held at the Lake Linden school with forty-five students involved in the class. The COs covered the law portion of the class, and all forty-five students received their ORV safety certificates.

CO Jared Ferguson and PCO Jacob Daniel went to Kingsford High School to speak with a group of juniors and seniors. During this discussion, the students learned what a conservation officer does and the process of becoming one.

Sergeant (Sgt.) Brian Bacon responded to a reported wildfire in Dickinson County. The investigation revealed that the fire was started by a homeowner who was burning a box of debris in an open meadow behind the residence. Luckily due to the quick response of Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fire personnel and volunteer fire departments, the fire was contained. The homeowner was issued for burning when not permitted.

Sgt. Brian Bacon responded to a report of a dam in southern Baraga County that had partially failed. The dam was responsible for regulating the water level of the Net River Flooding, which is a 400-acre wildlife flooding. The dam was quickly patched by DNR staff and private contractors before it fully failed. Incident command was established and contacts for high priority structures downstream were notified in case of a full dam failure. DNR staff is continuing to monitor the site and facilitate repairs.

CO Alex VanWagner responded to a report of a grass fire near a residence in Iron County. Upon arrival with the fire department, there was evidence of a fire in a subject’s front yard and the trees and brush adjacent to the residence were up in flames. The homeowner stated he was burning old wood laths in his firepit and went inside for 10 to 15 minutes. He came back outside to see his yard and trees on fire. The fire department was able to extinguish the fire before it escaped to the surrounding area and the homeowner was cited for failing to prevent the spread of fire.

COs John Kamps and Marc Mankowski responded to a search and rescue for a 21-year-old subject. The subject was reported to be intoxicated and left the house before midnight and was not seen the following morning. The house the subject left from was in a remote part of Marquette County and was surrounded by thick woods with many swampy areas. After searchers spent several hours, the subject was located walking down a two-track road several miles away. The subject refused medical treatment and appeared to be fine.


Acting Sgt. Chris Lynch assisted local ORV instructors with an ORV safety class in Escanaba. Approximately 20 students were in attendance.

COs Andrea Dani and Mark Zitnik responded to two open burning complaints on a busy Saturday when burning was prohibited due to high fire danger. The high winds pushed one fire into the adjacent woods and the fire department was called to put out the spreading fire. In both incidents the individuals were issued citations for burning without a permit and educated on what dry conditions with high winds can do to a fire.

CO Robert Freeborn and PCO Todd Bunce helped teach an ORV safety class to local kids. The COs educated the class on ORV laws in Michigan and answered questions. The kids enjoyed the class and were excited to be able to operate an ORV with their parents this summer.

COs Brandon Maki and Todd Sumbera were patrolling Drummond Island when they observed two individuals on the Potagannissing River, which was closed to fishing. As the COs moved closer to the subjects, it was found that they were catching walleye with their hands and a small net. Upon making contact, the individuals set down a bucket with six walleyes in it. One subject stated he was just looking to get a meal but knew it was a stupid choice. The subjects were fishing a closed stream, using illegal methods to take fish, fishing without a license, and taking walleye in a closed season. A report is being compiled and sent to the Chippewa County prosecutor for requested charges.

CO Todd Sumbera was checking anglers on the pier in Hessel when he came across an individual who was fishing without a license. The individual’s excuse was that he did not know when his prior license expired. CO Sumbera asked the man what the date was for needing a new license and he responded April 1st. The man was issued a citation for fishing without a license.

COs Mike Olesen, Todd Sumbera, Cole VanOosten, Justin Vincent, Mark Zitnik, Sgt. Calvin Smith, and acting 2nd/Lieutenant Kevin Postma attended a training exercise in the Straits of Mackinac that was focused on the response to an active shooter/ mass casualty incident on a ferry boat between Mackinac Island and St. Ignace.  Training was done on retrieving and transporting individuals to the proper area for medical care, tactical clearing of a transport vessel, and medical care of individuals wounded from gunshot wounds.

Corporals (Cpl.’s.) Brett Delong, Tom Peterson, and CO Cole VanOosten were on patrol in Mackinac County during smelt runs. The COs observed two individuals netting smelt. It was clear that one of the individuals was doing most of the fishing. The COs observed the one individual catch about four gallons of smelt and put them in a five-gallon bucket. The other individual caught approximately a gallon of smelt.  It was determined that the anglers had a large cooler hidden in the back of their vehicle with additional smelt. In total, the two anglers had 14 gallons of smelt, 10 gallons over the limit.  Additionally, one man did not have a fishing license. Citations were issued to the individuals for overlimit of smelt and fishing without a license.

Cpl.’s Brett Delong, Tom Peterson, and CO Cole VanOosten were on patrol in Mackinac County when they contacted two individuals returning from a night of smelt dipping. The individuals had two large buckets of smelt, approximately nine gallons. The anglers stated that they were just catching two limits because the first limit was caught before midnight. The COs informed the two anglers that is not how it works. To catch a limit the following day, the previous day’s limit must be processed by canning, curing by smoking, or drying, or freezing. A citation was issued to one of the men for possession of an over-limit of smelt

CO Cole VanOosten was on patrol when he received a complaint of an individual burning a brush pile during a period of time in which open burning was prohibited.  When CO VanOosten arrived on scene, the individual was not attending the fire, had used a tire to start the fire, and had two other tires on the brush pile that had not yet burned. A citation was issued for burning when prohibited and warnings were issued for unlawful disposal of tires and for not attending a fire.


CO Nathan Beelman was on ORV enforcement patrol when he heard what sounded like an ORV revving its engine, but not appearing to move. CO Beelman went to the area in which he believed the sound was coming from and located an ORV that was stuck in a wet area along a powerline. The operator, a juvenile, had driven through a fence to enter the area and became stuck on private property. The parents of one of the juveniles was called and arrived to help get the ORV unstuck. Contact was later made with the landowner and a plan is being made for the juvenile to fix the damage.

CO Andrea Albert and PCO Sydney Griffor responded to a complaint of a large field on fire. The COs investigation revealed that the property owner was burning trash and the fire escaped into a large field. A report has been submitted to the prosecutor’s office for the violations.

COs Tom Oberg and Kyle Cherry responded to a dirt bike injury accident involving a juvenile on private property. The COs arrived on scene with emergency medical services (EMS) and the juvenile was transported by ambulance to Otsego Memorial Hospital for injuries. The COs investigated the accident, and a crash report was compiled for the incident.

COs Kyle Cherry and Tom Oberg responded to a report of a brush fire in Otsego County. The COs arrived on scene, along with Otsego County deputies and multiple fire and emergency crews. The fire which burned approximately two acres, was quickly extinguished by responding firefighters. COs Cherry and Oberg contacted the homeowner who stated she was trying to build a bonfire when the fire quickly got away from her. A ticket was issued.

CO Tim Rosochacki was patrolling the sturgeon spawning area around the Black River in Cheboygan County when he observed three subjects fishing in a closed section of the Black River. Upon making contact, the subjects were also in possession of three walleye. The subjects also were close to a sign stating the river is closed. Tickets were written for fishing within a spawning closure and for retaining walleye in a closed season.

COs Tim Rosochacki and Matt Theunick participated alongside District 2 COs in the Straits Shield Training Exercise. This exercise simulated a mass casualty event onboard a passenger ferry in the Straits of Mackinac. This exercise was organized by the United States Coast Guard and brought together multiple agencies and resources to coordinate a large-scale rescue operation.

COs Sidney Collins and Dan Liestenfeltz spent several hours posting powerlines, wetlands, and non-ORV areas “closed” in Montmorency County. Numerous tickets have been issued in those areas since the new signs placed.

CO Jon Sheppard heard a complaint from Alpena Central Dispatch of a possible unlawful driving away of an automobile. The suspect had taken a vehicle for a test drive before buying it and had not returned for approximately four hours. The complainant was unable to reach the suspect by phone. MSP troopers responded to the scene and relayed the name and address of the suspect. CO Sheppard was near the address in Lachine and drove in that direction. While on Long Rapids Road, CO Sheppard observed the vehicle driving the opposite direction. CO Sheppard turned around and followed the vehicle, relaying the location to other law enforcement personnel. The MSP troopers advised CO Sheppard that the complainant just wanted the vehicle back and did not want to report it as stolen. CO Sheppard initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle for speeding and contacted the driver. CO Sheppard was assisted by an MSP trooper. The suspect told officers that she was on her way to return the vehicle now and was having the vehicle looked at by a mechanic. The officers advised her of two personal protection orders against her that had not been served and told her to return the vehicle or it would be reported as stolen.

CO Dan Liestenfeltz was patrolling in Montmorency County just before dark when he observed two dirt bikes traveling his direction at a high rate of speed. One of the dirt bikes rode past CO Liestenfeltz doing a wheelie and the other did not have any running headlights or taillights. CO Liestenfeltz initiated a stop on the dirt bikes and then discovered that the operators did not have ORV permits. The operators were a father and younger son. CO Liestenfeltz issued the father a ticket for failing to display an ORV permit and after educating on the laws and dangers of careless riding, gave warnings for the rest of the violations.

CO Daniel Liestenfeltz conducted a focused enforcement patrol on a closed area for ORVs in Montmorency Township, Montmorency County. In an hour and a half, CO Liestenfeltz wrote four tickets to drivers for operating an ORV where prohibited.  One of the operators was also educated on child safety measures on ORVs and received written warnings for those violations.

CO Dan Liestenfeltz was patrolling a closed section of the Devil’s River in Alpena County when he observed a subject fishing the closed area. As CO Liestenfeltz drove by, he observed the subject look up at the roadway then pull up his line and began to walk towards their vehicle. CO Liestenfeltz contacted the subject on the riverbank and asked the subject for their fishing license after reminding the angler the river was closed to fishing. The subject stated their fishing license was in the car. After checking the license at the vehicle, CO Liestenfeltz issued the angler a ticket for fishing a closed trout stream.

CO Dan Liestenfeltz was patrolling Montmorency County when he observed an ORV operating down the middle of a roadway. CO Liestenfeltz pulled out behind the ORV and then the ORV cut across a parking lot to access the back side of an ORV trail. CO Liestenfeltz knew which way the ORV was going to be coming out and waited on that side. The ORV cut across the trail then entered a side street traveling down the opposite side of the street against the flow of traffic. CO Liestenfeltz initiated a stop on the ORV and after speaking with the operator, CO Liestenfeltz immediately noticed signs of intoxication. CO Liestenfeltz ran the subject through standard field sobriety tests (SFST’s), which were not passed. The subject consented to a preliminary breath test and blew above the legal limit. The subject was lodged in the Alpena County Jail for operating while intoxicated (OWI) and operating an ORV on the roadway. A written warning was issued for operating against the flow of traffic.


COs William Kinney and Charlie Jones responded to a wildfire complaint in Grand Traverse County. Upon arrival, the COs were met by the fire departments who already had the fire contained. After speaking to the homeowner, it was discovered they had attempted to burn a small wooden pallet behind the residence. With the extreme fire conditions present, the fire had escaped from the homeowner and proceeded to burn the wood lot behind the residence. After the fire was extinguished, the homeowner was cited for failing to control the spread of the fire.

CO Amanda Weaver received a complaint through the RAP dispatch center of an individual who hit a flock of turkeys with his vehicle. After conducting a preliminary investigation, it was apparent that the act was intentional, and several turkeys were killed as a result of the collision.  CO Weaver interviewed the suspect, who admitted to hitting the birds and killing three or four of them. After the interview, COs Weaver and Patrick McManus patrolled the area and located numerous turkey parts at a location that matched the suspect’s description. The parts were collected in case DNA analysis became necessary. Charges are being sought through the court for numerous violations.

COs Patrick McManus and Will Kinney attended the annual Special Olympics of Michigan, Law Enforcement Torch Run conference held in Traverse City. The COs represented the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Law Enforcement Division (LED) and met with numerous law enforcement officials from around the state. The LED has always been a proud supporter of the Special Olympics in Michigan and is seeking ways to increase its footprint with the organization and take a larger role with events like the Law Enforcement Torch Run.

While patrolling Logan Township in Mason County, CO Kyle Publiski stopped an ORV that had an expired ORV license. After getting the ORV owner’s driver’s license, CO Publiski recognized the driver from a contact last year. CO Publiski returned to his patrol truck and determined he had cited the same subject for the same violation last year. The subject was cited for failing to register his ORV for the second year in a row.

COs Josiah Killingbeck and Ryan Andrews were contacted by CO Angela Greenway regarding a suspicious fire that CO Greenway had located in a remote area of United States Forest Service (USFS) land in southern Lake County. CO Greenway advised that a subject had shown up on scene shortly after CO Greenway had arrived. The subject had said that he was on a local fire department and had water with him to put out the fire. CO Greenway advised that the subject’s actions were suspicious to her. Later in the day, CO Killingbeck heard a call for another wildfire in the same area. CO Killingbeck responded to the scene and observed the subject that CO Greenway had described at the earlier fire. CO Killingbeck contacted the subject and spoke with him about what he had seen at the fire. The subject initially denied starting the fire but after a few questions he stated that he may have thrown a cigarette out at the exact location. A short time after that the subject said that he had lit the fire to check the wind direction.  A detective with the Lake County Sheriff’s Office arrived on scene and further interviews were conducted. The subject admitted to setting the fire so that he could respond as a firefighter and put the fire out. The subject also admitted to setting the fire that CO Greenway had located. CO Killingbeck discovered the subject had a warrant for his arrest out of Newaygo County. The subject was also in possession of illegal narcotics. The subject was arrested and lodged in the Lake County Jail for charges of arson and possession of illegal drugs.

CO Josiah Killingbeck and Sgt. Robert Meyers, of the Lake County Sheriff’s Office were doing a joint ORV patrol. Lake County Sheriff Martin contacted Sgt. Meyers asking for help on an ORV stop. CO Killingbeck and Sgt. Meyers responded to where Sheriff Martin had several ORVs stopped for careless operation. CO Killingbeck and Sgt. Meyers learned that one ORV had fled from Sheriff Martin. CO Killingbeck contacted one of the operators and learned an identity of the subject who had fled, along with where he may be headed. CO Ryan Andrews was directed to a staging area where the subject may be headed. CO Andrews advised that a subject matching the description ran off into the woods. Sgt. Meyers was able to locate the subject in the woods and learned that the subject had hid his dirt bike in the woods north of his current location. CO Killingbeck located the dirt bike and stayed with it until a tow truck arrived to impound it. While waiting for the tow truck, CO Killingbeck observed three subjects on ORVs operating illegally on M 37. CO Killingbeck made contact and the subjects said they did not know what the rules were on ORVs regarding where they could operate. CO Killingbeck discovered one subject was operating outside of his driver’s license restrictions, two ORVs had not been registered, and one subject had been reported missing. Citations were issued for Operating ORVs on M 37.

CO Josiah Killingbeck responded to a wildfire in a rural area. CO Killingbeck was able to locate access to the fire and units were directed to the area. The 63-acre fire was contained, and CO Killingbeck learned a subject had burned the day prior and the day of the fire had taken all the ash and coals into the woods in an effort to clean up the grounds of a camp.  CO Killingbeck issued a citation for fail to prevent the spread of fire.

CO Ben Shively and PCO Mark Reffitt were on patrol when they observed an individual fishing a closed portion of the White River. PCO Reffitt approached the individual who stated he was 16 years old. The individual did not have identification on him and when asked for his name and date of birth, he provided a date that would have put him at 15 years old. When questioned on this, the subject admitted that he was 18 and knew that he needed a fishing license, which he did not have. He was cited for fishing without a license and warned for fishing on a closed trout stream.

CO Josh Reed assisted the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office with a warrant attempt in Big Rapids Township. Detective/Sgt. Mohr had requested assistance in searching an address for a wanted subject. CO Reed and three deputies searched the address for the wanted subject and located three other subjects with multiple warrants hiding throughout the property. The initial subject was also located, arrested, and lodged in the Mecosta County Jail.

CO Josh Reed assisted a deputy from the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office with the execution of an arrest warrant. The wanted subject had two warrants related to an illegal deer from the 2021 rifle deer season and several other warrants from Mecosta County and surrounding counties. Permission was granted from the homeowner to search the residence. The wanted subject would not listen to commands to come out of the residence and was subsequently located hiding under household items and trash in a back bedroom. The suspect was arrested and lodged in Mecosta County Jail without incident.

CO Tim Barboza assisted the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) special agents with serving a subpoena to an individual who has charges pending from the Alaska office. CO Barboza and the USFW federal agent were able to serve the paperwork without incident.

CO Tim Barboza was patrolling the Muskegon State Game Area, which is closed to ORV use, and witnessed a Jeep drive through a trout stream. CO Barboza conducted a stop on the vehicle. The driver had been provided a verbal warning from CO Barboza the previous year for the same violation. CO Barboza cited the driver for operating through a stream.

CO Tim Barboza assisted with the Norton Shores hunter’s safety course, along with several other COs, Norton Shores Police officers, and volunteers. The class comprised of over two hundred students from all over the state.

CO Micah Hintze received a call from a concerned citizen stating that one of his neighbors was fishing on a closed trout stream. The caller had the angler next to him while on the phone and stated that he had misread the fishing digest and thought this stretch of trout stream was open. The angler was educated over the phone of the closure and the opening date for trout season. Later in the week, CO Hintze received another call from a different neighbor stating an angler was currently fishing closed waters who matched the description of the angler who previously plead ignorance to knowing the regulations. CO Hintze located the angler who was trespassing on multiple private properties. CO Hintze confirmed it was the same angler from earlier in the week who stated he did not think fishing closed waters was a big deal. A citation was issued for recreational trespass and fishing a closed trout stream.

CO Micah Hintze attended the Oceana County Earth Day event educating conservation enthusiasts by utilizing the district fur kit of Michigan mammals through identification of species. CO Hintze discussed legal methods of harvest, described the importance of preserving and protecting the natural resources, and the responsibilities of a conservation officer.


CO Josh Russell received a complaint from the RAP hotline of a business owner burning items that should not be burned. COs Russell and Dan Robinson located the fire and confirmed there were several items that should not be burned. The COs spoke to the owner of the business who admitted he was burning a cabin he had recently torn down. There were processed woods, plastics, metal, and other items in the fire. A citation was issued for the illegal disposal of solid waste.
COs Josh Russell and Mike Haas were patrolling the Gladwin/Bay County line for sucker spearing activity. The COs located two subjects spearing in a small drainage ditch, no violations were present. However, as the COs were speaking to the first two anglers, two more anglers arrived and began to spear in the same drainage ditch. COs Haas and Russell contacted the new anglers. Neither angler had a fishing license and one of the anglers had three outstanding arrest warrants out of Midland County. Tickets were issued for fishing without a license.

CO Josh Russell was called by the Clare County Sheriff’s Department to assist in a search warrant. The suspect residence had several deer carcasses on the roof of the house. CO Russell arrived on scene and spoke to the suspect. During the interview, it was determined the deer were road-killed and they were being kept on the roof so his dogs would not get them. As CO Russell continued to speak to the suspect, he observed a freshly killed rabbit. The suspect admitted to shooting the rabbit with a .22 rifle and he did not have a base license. A citation was issued for the small game violation.

While patrolling Gladwin County, CO Jeff Goss noticed a new ground blind on private property bordering state land. CO Goss also knew there was a ladder-stand on the state land near the newly erected ground blind. CO Goss climbed the ladder stand and could clearly see oats scattered in front of the ground blind. Since the field was a corn stubble field, CO Goss knew the oats were not naturally occurring. CO Goss contacted the suspect on the property and located a total of three blinds on the property that were all baited with oats for turkey hunting. The suspect was issued a ticket for making use of bait to aid in the taking of wild turkey.

CO Josh Russell was patrolling state land in Clare County when he encountered two subjects cutting and loading firewood into their truck. CO Russell contacted the subjects and asked to see their woodcutting permit. The subjects stated they did not have a permit because they did not want to spend the $20 dollars it would cost to acquire one. The subjects admitted to taking firewood from state land for many years. A citation was issued for the violation.

CO Kyle Bader received a complaint regarding a hunter who witnessed a man shoot a turkey from his vehicle in Ogemaw County. The caller met the suspect on a trail and was waiting with him for the CO. With the assistance of COs Matt Zultak and Ben McAteer, interviews were conducted. The suspect said his wife had seen the tom turkey on the side of the road multiple times on her way to work and he decided to hunt it. He said he saw the tom, reached in the back seat to retrieve his shotgun, slowed down to put his shotgun out the window, and shot the turkey from his truck. The turkey was less than 10 yards away. Charges for taking a turkey from a motor vehicle and possess a firearm in a motor vehicle are being sought through the Ogemaw County Prosecutor’s Office.

PCO Michael Eovaldi and CO Johnathan Warner were foot patrolling a spawning closure on the East Branch of the AuGres River in Iosco County when they spotted an angler actively fishing within a closed portion of the stream. After watching the angler for several minutes, they made contact. The COs seized two steelhead taken in the spawning closure and a citation was written for fishing the closed stream.

PCO Michael Eovaldi and CO Johnathan Warner were patrolling into an area of a closed trout stream when they encountered another truck on the narrow forest road. PCO Eovaldi looked into the truck and saw what appeared to be and open beer.  PCO Eovaldi contacted the driver who acknowledged that he was “sipping on a beer.”  PCO Eovaldi investigated further and determined the driver of the truck had a suspended driver’s license. The driver was written a citation for transporting open intoxicants and operating on a suspended driver’s license.

CO Kyle Bader assisted 4-H program coordinator Enya DeFeijter with an Earth Day state land clean up event on April 23rd in Ogemaw County. Ms. DeFeijter and a group of volunteers from her 4-H reptile club cleaned up multiple piles of trash on state land in Ogemaw County totaling over three hundred pounds. CO Bader scouted cleanup sites and disposed of the trash collected.

COs Brad Bellville and Kyle Bader responded to a fire that escaped from a brush pile and had burned most of a 15-acre field in Ogemaw County. On scene the landowner was frantically trying to control the fire with his Bobcat tractor. He became irate when law enforcement and the fire department arrived on scene. Initially, he refused to exit his machine or cooperate with the fire department. Personnel on scene had to use caution because it was apparent the man had the potential to run someone over if they were in his way. Once the field fire was contained, he was required to put the brush pile out because he refused to allow the fire department access to the field. Charges will be pursued for open burning during a burn ban day.

CO Jeff Panich assisted Forest Resource Division (FRD) on a grass fire in Alcona County. FRD had a team of responders, along with two local volunteer fire departments, battle a nine-acre grass fire with strong winds. CO Panich investigated the incident and determined the homeowner was burning household waste on the ground behind the house and left it unattended, which allowed the fire to escape. Citations were written for open burning and fail to prevent the spread of fire. Costs for suppression will likely be assessed as well.

CO Tyler Sabuda located a group of anglers fishing during the midnight hours in a spot well-known for walleye in Iosco County. After some surveillance, CO Sabuda contacted the anglers. The anglers were in possession of five walleye during the closed season. The anglers were charged with taking walleye out of season and fishing without a license.

COs Charlie Jones, Ben McAteer, Breanna Reed, and James Garrett teamed up with the Northwest Michigan Fishing Club in Kalkaska for the 2022 Trout Festival. The COs assisted kids fishing in a small man-made pond for rainbow trout.  

CO Charlie Jones was on patrol when he was dispatched to a grass fire in Kalkaska County. On arrival it was discovered that, the homeowner had decided to ignore the high fire danger and burn brush and debris. The fire became out of control and burnt many trees and was close to a barn. Fire units on scene extinguished the fire without incident. The homeowner was issued a citation for fail to prevent spread of fire and issued a warning for burning when no permits are issued.

CO Charlie Jones was on patrol in Kalkaska County when he was dispatched for a grass fire in Boardman Township. CO Jones arrived on scene and observed multiple acres burnt. Upon further investigation, the homeowner was shooting firearms in his back yard. The shotgun used was loaded with a highly flammable round called “Dragons Breath.”  The round was discharged from the firearm resulting in a large ball of flames and sparks. A fire quickly began spreading through the homeowner’s and neighbors’ property. A citation was issued for failing to prevent the spread of fire.


While patrolling Huron County the afternoon after working the walleye opener on the Saginaw River, CO Matthew Neterer observed shore fishing activity in a canal near Mud Creek. Upon exiting his patrol truck, CO Neterer observed a man and a woman quickly grab their dogs and go inside a nearby mobile home. CO Neterer observed a folding chair, tackle box, a minnow bucket left in the yard, and a fishing line left unattended in the water. CO Neterer knocked on the door and asked to speak to the angler who left the unattended fishing line. While waiting, CO Neterer observed a cooler against the side of the mobile home. A man came outside and admitted to having fish in the cooler but claimed that a neighbor had given them to him and stated that he had not purchased his fishing license. CO Neterer explained that regardless of who caught the fish, he was in possession of them without a fishing license. The man was found to have 19 crappie and two bluegill in the cooler.  CO Neterer issued a citation for possessing the fish without a license and gave a verbal warning for leaving the fishing line unattended.

CO Mike Haas and PCO Paul Lyden encountered two anglers at the Greenville Dam who failed to purchase their fishing licenses. While checking the anglers through the DNR dispatch, it was discovered that one angler had two warrants for his arrest. The angler with warrants was placed under arrest and the second angler was cited for fishing without a license. The Greenville Police Department arrived on scene and assisted the COs by transporting the angler with warrants to jail.

While checking anglers in southern Clare County, CO Mike Haas and PCO Paul Lyden checked an angler who was fishing and had a large bucket full of crayfish. The angler had never purchased a fishing license in his life and had an arrest warrant for an assault charge out of Indiana. The man was advised and released for his warrant but received a citation for fishing and possessing crayfish without a fishing license. The crayfish were released back into the water.

During a late evening patrol on the Gladwin and Bay County line, COs Mike Haas and Josh Russell observed multiple anglers spearing fish on a small creek. The anglers had many suckers, but two of the anglers had failed to purchase a fishing license. It was also discovered that one of the unlicensed anglers had three warrants for his arrest in Midland County. The man was advised and released for his warrants, but he and the other unlicensed angler were cited for lacking fishing licenses.

CO Mike Haas and PCO Paul Lyden were contacted by Isabella Central Dispatch and asked for assistance at an illegal fire. The man responsible for the fire had repeatedly been warned by the fire department for burning large amounts of items that created nuisance smoke in their neighborhood.  The fire department put out the large fire that the man had started to burn furniture and camper trailer parts. The COs issued a citation to the gentleman for disposing of waste improperly and for violating burn permit restrictions.

While patrolling the Flat River SGA on Easter Sunday, CO Mike Haas encountered a motor vehicle that drove through the woods and around a locked gate. The driver admitted he knew he shouldn’t be back at the location but assumed there wouldn’t be any COs in the area since it was Easter.  The man was cited and escorted out of the closed area.

COs Dan Robinson and Josh Russell were working trout streams in Isabella County when a call came out for a roll-over accident around the corner. The COs were there within a few minutes and found the car on its top with several bystanders in the area. The occupants had minor injuries considering the extent of the car damage. EMS arrived and evaluated the passengers. The vehicle was found to not have insurance and an improper plate. A report was completed, and citations issued for the violations along with several warnings.

While on patrol, CO Adam Schiller observed two individuals fishing from the banks of the Pine River. When the subjects spotted the CO approaching, both subjects dropped their poles and started to walk towards their chairs on the bank. The CO asked for their fishing licenses to which they both handed expired fishing licenses to the CO. When asked if they had current fishing licenses, the subjects stated that the store clerk at Wal-Mart told them they did not need new licenses. The CO issued citations for fishing without a license to both subjects. When the subjects received their licenses, they admitted that they did not in fact go to Wal-Mart and told the CO that they thought that would get them out of a ticket.


CO Christopher Holmes was in the City of Kalamazoo checking anglers when he observed three individuals actively fishing. When CO Holmes contacted the anglers, one of the subjects pulled out his smart phone and began actively typing. CO Holmes asked the subject who he was texting, and the subject stated he was buying his fishing license. CO Holmes advised the subject that he watched him fishing twenty minutes ago and he should have had his license before then. CO Holmes issued all three subjects citations for fishing without licenses.

While checking turkey hunters on opening day of the season in Allegan County, CO Sam Schluckbier and PCO Jacob Hamilton noticed a vehicle suspiciously parked in an Allegan SGA parking lot. The vehicle was backed into the parking area and partially hidden behind some tree stumps. While approaching the parked vehicle, CO Schluckbier noticed a pipe running from the exhaust up to a side window. PCO Hamilton looked in the window and saw an unresponsive subject laying on the floor. The vehicle was opened to render aid to the subject inside, but it was not successful. The MSP arrived on scene of the apparent suicide and took over the scene. CO Schluckbier and PCO Hamilton assisted with the investigation.

A complaint was received of someone camping in the Allegan SGA in Allegan County and the complainant was concerned that the subject was destroying trees in the area and littering. CO Sam Schluckbier and PCO Jacob Hamilton contacted the subject and stated their concern for his living situation and addressed the violations that were present. Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the subject had active warrants for his arrest. The subject was taken into custody and lodged in the Allegan County Jail.

CO James Nason received information from park rangers at Fort Custer in Kalamazoo County that freshly graded parking lots within the park had been turfed. This is a reoccurring problem every year. CO Nason along with multiple rangers set trail cameras in various locations to catch drivers turfing the property. After just a few days, CO Nason returned and, along with the rangers, pulled all the cards from the cameras. One card revealed video footage of a four-by-four sport utility vehicle turfing one of the parking lots. With a lot of help from the DNR Dispatch Station 20, a positive identification and registration plate was able to be obtained. CO Nason attempted to contact the owner at their residence but was unsuccessful. The operator of the vehicle is facing multiple civil infraction violations and when contacted, will also be banned from the recreation area for one year, per park staff requests. Cameras are still out and investigations are on-going.

While patrolling the Village of Vicksburg in Kalamazoo County, CO James Nason came upon two subjects fishing from a very active railroad bridge.  The individuals stated that they did not notice the 18 inch by 12 inch sign that read, “DANGER NO TRESPASSING” even though the subjects had to walk around the sign to get to where they were fishing.  When asked for their fishing licenses, they both stated that they did have up-to-date licenses but did not have them on them. Upon searching the DNR Retail Sales System, CO Nason found that neither had a valid license on file. Additionally, CO Nason discovered that both subjects had active warrants out of Kalamazoo County but were not wanted by the jail. CO Nason issued citations for railroad trespass and fishing without licenses. The subjects were also advised of their warrants and released.

While on patrol in Ionia County, CO Jeremy Beavers and PCO Michael Lator checked for turkey hunters in the Flat River SGA. While checking for hunters near the Montcalm County line, the COs spotted two vehicles parked near Consumers Energy property. PCO Lator observed the area and spotted a hunting blind near a wood line and two decoys in the middle of the Consumers property almost directly under the powerlines.  PCO Lator determined they were illegally hunting on Consumers property and walked to the hunters’ location. After making contact, PCO Lator learned that the hunters have used the site multiple times in the past and have killed turkeys at the location. He explained to the hunters that Consumers does not allow hunting on the property and it is posted and fenced against entry.  He went on to tell them that any birds killed at that location are considered illegal and they could lose their hunting privileges as a result. The hunters were instructed to pack up their equipment and leave the property. PCO Lator issued the hunters citations for trespassing.

COs BJ Goulette and Justin Ulberg followed up on a complaint of a subject who shot a turkey without a 2022 turkey license. A picture of the subject posing with a dead turkey was located on a social media site. A check of the DNR licensing system revealed the subject had not purchased a turkey license. The subject was interviewed, and a confession was received that the turkey was taken without a license. A report will be submitted to the county prosecutor for pending charges.

While working in Ottawa County, COs BJ Goulette and Justin Ulberg heard a complaint from county dispatch regarding a suspicious subject outside an area bank with a “baseball bat” and a “shovel.”  The caller believed the subject was attempting to rob the bank. COs Goulette and Ulberg were first on scene and discovered the subject was obtaining an estimate to repair the parking lot. The “baseball bat” was a paint marking wand and the “shovel” was a measuring wheel.

COs Casey Varriale, Justin Ulberg, and Anna Cullen were on a marine patrol in the Bass River Recreation Area in Ottawa County where they witnessed a man on an ORV in an area closed to motor vehicles. CO Varriale got on shore and spoke with the individual. During the conversation it was discovered that the individual knew the area was closed to motor vehicle traffic. He also did not have a helmet, ORV registration, and did not have a valid driver’s license. The individual was cited for the violations.


CO John Byars received a RAP complaint about trespassing on private property. CO Byars went to the location and observed the video surveillance and photos and determined that this had also happened eight months earlier. CO Byars investigated and concluded that the suspect was a different person but from the same family. CO Byars checked that the area was clearly posted. CO Byars contacted the suspect’s parent and educated them on the legalities of trespassing on private property. A verbal warning was issued.

CO Cullen Knoblauch and Sgt. Jason Smith attended a hunter safety class at the Eaton Rapids Conservation Club consisting of 50 students and parents.  Sgt. Smith and CO Knoblauch answered many questions from the class attendees.

CO Cullen Knoblauch conducted a deer processor inspection at a local business after the 2021 deer hunting season concluded. CO Knoblauch located a record of a buck being dropped off on November 18th and the license had been purchased on November 17th.  CO Knoblauch contacted the female suspect who confessed to shooting a 6-point buck on November 15th and purchasing the tag two days later. The report will be forwarded to the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

CO Cullen Knoblauch responded to a trespassing complaint on the opening day of spring turkey season. The suspect was a 14 year old who trespassed on private property, hunted without a license, possessed the wrong size of shot, and had not completed hunter safety. CO Knoblauch spoke with the juvenile, his father, and the landowner. It was decided to educate the juvenile rather than petitioning him to the youth court.

CO Chris Reynolds assisted Ohio Fish and Game on an illegal otter case. CO Reynolds reached out to several taxidermists locating the otter which was seized and turned over to the Ohio officer.

CO Ed Rice received a report of a domestic situation involving multiple juveniles. CO Rice arrived at the residence and spoke with the grandmother who stated her teenage grandson became upset causing damage throughout the residence. CO Rice contacted the teenager who got into a verbal dispute with his sister and admitted to the damage. The damage was documented, and the teen’s probation officer was notified. The teen was transported to a nearby youth home for the weekend by a Hillsdale County Sheriff’s deputy.


While on marine patrol at approximately midnight, COs David Schaumburger and Ariel Young came upon a vessel with no navigation lights.  The COs contacted the operator who was a charter boat captain and who also was operating a charter. The operator stated that he did not realize the lights did not work. A check of his safety equipment also revealed that he was missing a fire extinguisher. The operator was notified that he is to cease all charter operations until the vessel is inspected again. Citations were issued for improper navigation lights and for operating a charter boat in violation of the terms of inspection.

CO David Schaumburger received information that a group of anglers from Kansas had possibly taken two limits of walleye as they were seen coming and going from a marina in Detroit, twice.  The next day, CO Schaumburger conducted surveillance for 10 grueling hours and watched the anglers come and go twice from the marina.  When they arrived back in the marina in the evening, COs Joseph Deppen and Ariel Young contacted the anglers. The anglers were in possession of 17 walleye among the four of them and they stated they cleaned seven of them and took them to lunch at Sinbad’s to eat.  During the contact, the COs were able to establish that the anglers had taken an over-limit the previous day as they had eaten an unknown amount of walleye for lunch, but also continued to catch and brought 24 back to the dock at night to clean.  The anglers were advised of the issue from the previous day and given a warning as the COs could not prove how many they were over the limit and the anglers not being cooperative.

CO David Schaumburger contacted an angler at the Ecorse boat ramp who he recognized from a previous contact. A few years ago, the angler was in possession of an over-limit of walleye and had hidden them in various compartments in his boat. During his contact with the CO at the dock, he said he have “five or six” in the live well. The CO asked to look around on his boat and found six walleyes in his live well, another six in a white garbage bag in a life jacket compartment, and another nine in a white garbage bag in a different life jacket compartment. Of the 21 walleye the angler was in possession of, five of them were undersized.  Not only did the angler have prior citations from CO Schaumburger, but he had also received a total of five citations from years past. The angler was given one citation for possessing an over-limit of walleye and five citations for possessing undersized walleye. CO Schaumburger intends to ask the judge to revoke his fishing license during the court proceedings as this angler has not learned his lesson.

COs Dan Walzak and David Schaumburger conducted a marine patrol on a very windy day on the Detroit River. The constant 26 to 28 mph wind from the southwest caused some significant upstream rollers for drifting walleye anglers. While on this patrol, the COs contacted a 16 foot flat-bottomed vessel with five adults on board.  While the vessel was pulled up to the patrol vessel and the safety equipment was being inspected, CO Walzak observed the vessel take water over the transom, twice. The safety inspection revealed that the vessel owner had only four life preservers on board the vessel and, with all the persons on board, the life preservers were stashed away so as to not be readily accessible.  A citation was issued for the missing life preserver.

While out on patrol, CO Ariel Young encountered a pedestrian on the freeway. After stopping out with and questioning the pedestrian on how they came to be on the very busy freeway, CO Young felt it was best to have the individual evaluated at a local hospital.  The pedestrian was then turned over to the MSP for petitioning since COs currently have no authority to petition.

Sgt. Becker was contacted by the MSP requesting assistance searching for a missing person. The subject was missing from the Holly area and was possibly suicidal. COs Justin Muehlhauser and Luke Robare and the park supervisor assisted with the search of Holly Recreation Area. After searching most of the recreation area, the COs heard a call from Genesee County Dispatch that a vehicle matching the missing subject’s was located not far from where the COs were searching.  Unfortunately, the responding deputy found the missing subject deceased at the scene.

PCO Marissa Hassevoort and CO Justin Muehlhauser received information that a subject purchased a turkey license online, shot a turkey, and then turned it in to a taxidermist without a tag. The COs looked at the subject’s license history and noticed that he had done the same thing last deer season and last turkey season. The COs looked up the subject’s address to interview him and noticed that his residence backs up to Genesee County Park property in an area that has seen trespass issues in the past. When the COs went to investigate the area, they observed large amounts of shelled corn, decoys, and portable blinds on park property behind the subject’s residence.  The COs interviewed the subject and his wife, and both confirmed that the subject shot a turkey on the date in question and accurately described the hunting location. The wife stated that the subject put out corn the day before to attract wildlife. Charges are being sought through the Genesee County Prosecutor’s Office for taking turkey over bait and trespass.

CO Bob Watson was patrolling the St. Clair River and contacted two anglers in Clay Township fishing for panfish from shore. One angler stated they had caught a few and that both their fish were in his bucket. The angler showed CO Watson their combined catch and it appeared to be over the limit.  A final count of bluegill and sunfish produced 78 panfish, 28 over the legal limit for two combined panfish limit.  Both anglers were cited for an over-limit of panfish.

CO Bob Watson was patrolling on a very windy day on the St. Clair River when he observed a small boat fishing. The man fishing appeared to have six total lines trolling for Coho salmon. CO Watson contacted the man who stated he did not know there was a limit on the number of lines able to be used. A check for prior DNR violations revealed the man had been issued three violations within the last five years for fishing violations. CO Watson issued the man a citation for fishing with too many lines and advised him to review the Michigan fishing guide.

CO Bob Watson received a complaint of ORV activity within the Port Huron SGA. CO Watson was able to respond three hours after the complaint was received. CO Watson followed a very torn up trail made by a side-by-side ORV and eventually contacted a man and woman over a mile into the game area.  The man stated he knew he wasn’t supposed to be back there but it was such a cool trail he wanted to show his date.  CO Watson issued the man a citation for failing to display an ORV registration sticker and for operating an ORV within state lands. The ORV was also towed.

COs Jaime Salisbury, Raymond Gardner, and PCO Marissa Hassevoort were on an ORV patrol when they stopped at Lake Minnawanna to check for fishing activity. The COs observed an angler without boat registration stickers. The COs called the angler over to the dock; the angler stated he did not know he needed to register his boat. The COs issued a citation for operating an unregistered watercraft.

CO Jaime Salisbury was following a vehicle when the driver failed to signal a turn and rolled a stop sign. CO Salisbury conducted a traffic stop for the violations. When CO Salisbury contacted the driver, he could smell alcohol coming from the vehicle. It was discovered that both the driver and passenger had open beers in their cup holders. The driver was checked for signs of intoxication, and he was not intoxicated. CO Salisbury issued both subjects citations for having open alcohol containers in a motor vehicle.

CO Kris Kiel and PCO Cameron Wright patrolled St. Clair and Macomb Counties for illegal ORV activity. The COs made a total of 12 stops and contacted nearly 40 ORV operators and riders.  Nineteen warnings were given for minor violations and the riders were educated on the ORV laws. A total of seven citations were written for violations including operating ORVs on a closed highway, operating unlicensed ORVs, operating ORVs at speeds greater than reasonable, and one citation for fishing without a license was issued.

CO Kris Kiel responded to a complaint from Macomb County dispatch of a subject shooting at a family of foxes in an unsafe direction. CO Kiel arrived at the subject’s residence and met him in the driveway. When asked about the foxes, the subject stated that he had only shot at the “big one,” but missed. CO Kiel told him that he needs to start telling the truth and to take him to the dead fox. CO Kiel followed the subject into the flooded woodlot behind the residence to where the two dead fox pups had been discarded. The subject also admitted to having killed another pup a couple days prior.  CO Kiel seized the firearm and the dead fox pups and will be submitting a report to the prosecutor for a multitude of charges from taking fox during the closed season to hunt within the safety zone of another.

CO Joseph Deppen was checking anglers along Lake Erie. CO Deppen asked an angler what he caught for the day and the angler opened his live well and said a walleye and the biggest Smallmouth bass he had ever seen. CO Deppen told the angler the possession season was almost a month away.  The angler said he did not know there was a season. The angler was cited for possession of a Smallmouth bass during the closed season.

CO Brandon Hartleben handled a complaint in Wayne County of a vehicle/group of vehicles that were reportedly off-roading at Pointe Mouillee SGA and had become stuck.  CO Hartleben arrived at the location and observed a truck stuck in a watery field directly past a “No Motor Vehicles Allowed” sign. There was a group of people already on scene who had tried to recover the vehicle along with the vehicle’s owner. After finally sorting through the whole situation with the parties on scene, it was revealed that the vehicle had been stuck since approximately 3:00 am that morning. The operator was issued multiple citations for the violations and a wrecker was able to, after several hours, successfully remove the vehicle from the area.

CO Nicholas Ingersoll was patrolling Pointe Mouillee SGA when he observed a vehicle parking along the grass who blatantly drove over the parking barricades to fish along the river. CO Ingersoll spoke with the driver who had no excuse for how he had parked. CO Ingersoll advised the driver that all other 20-plus vehicles were able to park correctly and asked the driver to move his vehicle off the grass and to a parking spot. CO Ingersoll issued the driver a citation for parking in an improper spot.

CO Brandon Vacek was on patrol at Crystal Waters SGA in Monroe County. The CO was waiting for two anglers to return to their vehicles at the parking area when he heard the exhaust note from a dirt bike heading his direction. The CO was very surprised when a subject riding a dirt bike exited the game area and parked near one of the vehicles directly in front of the COs patrol vehicle.  CO Vacek contacted the subject and addressed several of the observed violations. The subject was issued a citation for operating an ORV in an SGA and given a warning for not having a current ORV sticker. The subject was given a ride home by one of the anglers at the parking area as an alternative to having his vehicle towed.

Sgt. Shane Webster was working in Monroe County on Stonegarden patrol when he observed an ORV being operated on the public roadway. Due to the distance the ORV was ahead and its rate of speed, it took approximately two miles to catch up to the ORV as it pulled into a driveway. The operator had an expired driver license, no helmet, and an unlicensed ORV. A ticket was issued for the lack of safety equipment and warnings for the other violations.


CO Brandon Hartleben encountered a small red sedan stuck in the mud in the grassy median between Riverbank and Central directly across from the beach while patrolling Belle Isle State Park. With assistance from CO Ariel Young, the female subject operating the vehicle was eventually identified and was cited for operating a motor vehicle in a non-designated area at a state park. A tow company was called to remove the hopelessly stuck vehicle and the operator was able to pay the removal fee in lieu of the vehicle being impounded.

While on patrol at Belle Isle, COs Ariel Young and Brandon Vacek responded to a medical call at the Detroit Yacht Club. The call came out that someone had fallen and was possibly having seizures.  Upon their arrival, the COs located the unresponsive person and provided first aid until EMS could get on scene. The individual was then transported to a local hospital for care.

Sgt. Shane Webster made a traffic stop for a vehicle being operated at 45 mph on Belle Isle where the speed limit is 25 mph.  The operator was found to have a suspended license and six outstanding warrants, including one for failing to appear on the charge of assaulting a police officer. The warrants were confirmed via Law Enforcement Information Network and Station 20, and a meet was arranged with the Ypsilanti police. The subject was arrested and turned over to them for lodging in the Washtenaw County Jail.