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Conservation Officer (CO) Brian Lasanen received a call of an injured bald eagle down the road from his residence. CO Lasanen responded and was able to capture the bald eagle and transport it to a local rehabilitation facility.
CO Alex VanWagner assisted Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission wardens teach a hunter safety course at the Ontonagon School. The students were very interactive as they learned about laws, ethics, and safe hunting practices.
CO Shannon Wicklund taught boater’s safety to students in Menominee County. Members of the Marinette Menominee US Power Squadron assisted CO Wicklund with teaching the course by providing decades of boating knowledge and experience to the students. Students passed the class with knowledge of operating boats safely on both state and federal waters.
CO Alex VanWagner received a complaint of shots heard well after shooting hours on the opening weekend of spring turkey season. The CO responded to the area and contacted three juvenile hunters who were leaving from a piece of state land in Iron County. They also had a dead tom turkey in their possession that was not tagged. One of the hunters admitted he shot it shortly before the CO contacted them and the exact time was determined by the hunter’s statements and photographs. The bird was shot a half hour after legal shooting hours and the young hunters explained they did not know shooting hours for spring turkey season ended one half hour before sunset. This was the hunter’s second turkey ever harvested and he explained he did not know the laws as well as he should have. CO VanWagner explained to the hunter that he was not going to petition him to court due to the honesty and full cooperation from the group, although the turkey would be seized as it was shot illegally. CO VanWagner addressed the violations, educated the group on various hunting laws, and answered questions that they had. The turkey was donated to a local family in need.
COs Phil Helminen and Jared Ferguson taught at a hunter safety field day at the Sagola Sportsman’s Club in Dickinson County. The COs instructed on the duties of conservation officers and hunting laws.
CO John Kamps and Probationary Conservation Officer (PCO) Steve Sajtar received a complaint about a beaver that was shot with a firearm. The COs went to the suspects’ residence where they located the beaver and conducted multiple interviews. After numerous denials, a confession was finally obtained by the primary suspect. It was determined that the person who shot the beaver was a felon and not allowed to possess a firearm. Charges will be filled with the Marquette County Prosecutor’s Office.
On the opening day of spring turkey season, COs John Kamps, Jackson Kelly, and PCO Steve Sajtar watched an individual take an uncased firearm out of a motor vehicle and begin stalking through the woods towards a turkey. The individual, who stated he was turkey hunting, failed to have a turkey license in his possession. A citation was issued.
CO John Kamps, Cpl. (Corporal) Mike Hammill, and PCO Steve Sajtar responded to a complaint of a cub bear that was stuck in a trap. The sow and an additional cub were close by the cub that was crying for help. The COs located the crying bear and determined the bear not to be stuck in a trap, but to have his paw stuck in the tree. The front paw was wedged tightly between two branches nearly 25 feet above the ground. Cpl. Hammill climbed up the tree and was able to cut the branch below the foot and free the cub. The cub bear was reunited with its family.
CO Robert Freeborn volunteered at one of the local schools for their annual school carnival. The carnival is open to the public and consists of several activity stations for the kids to play throughout the school and gym. CO Freeborn, along with local law enforcement, took shifts running the “jail” where kids could place a person of their choosing in “jail” for three minutes. This is one of the most popular games offered at the carnival and was a great chance for law enforcement to interact with their community in a positive manner.
While enroute to training, CO Robert Freeborn overheard local dispatch report of a home invasion in progress. CO Freeborn was just passing the street where the incident was taking place. CO Freeborn was first on the scene and apprehended the suspect in the backyard as they tried to flee. The suspect was then detained until local and state units arrived. As the local units were talking with the home invasion suspect, CO Freeborn ran files on other subjects currently at the residence. One of the subjects had two outstanding felony warrants. CO Freeborn placed the suspect in custody and transported the suspect to the local jail, while the local unit transported the home invasion suspect to jail.
CO Chris Lynch responded to a complaint of angler recreational trespassing. CO Lynch was approaching an angler actively fishing and when the angler saw the CO, he stopped fishing and proceeded to dump his fish out of his bucket and threw them back into the water. CO Lynch informed the angler it was a little too late and after re-counting all the fish together the angler was issued a citation for taking over the limit of yellow perch.
About a week prior to the trout opener, CO Todd Sumbera conducted a fisheries patrol on local trout streams that were closed to fishing. CO Sumbera followed fresh tracks down an ORV trail to find an individual fishing a closed stream. The individual stated, “It’s loaded with steelhead, and it was too tempting.” A citation was issued for fishing a closed stream.
COs Mike Olesen and Todd Sumbera put on a traditional hunter education course for individuals of the eastern Upper Peninsula. The class had a total of 25 students that attended the course and after completing the field day portion at the Chippewa County Shooting Association, all 25 students left with their hunter education certificate.
CO Justin Vinson patrolled several rivers and creeks along Whitefish Bay for fishing activity. CO Vinson had stopped at the Tahquamenon River mouth and observed a vehicle belonging to two other anglers he had checked earlier that night. CO Vinson waited for the two anglers to return to their car, where he witnessed them carry more than seven gallons of smelt from the river to their vehicle. Contact was made, and it was discovered that the two anglers had more than 12 gallons of smelt they had caught at multiple locations. Citations were issued for taking an over-limit of smelt.
COs Justin Vinson and Cole VanOosten participated in the Tahquamenon Area Sportsman’s Club kids tackle party. Over 200 local kids and numerous adults attended and played a fishing game administered by the COs. Every child was able to leave with a prize consisting of fishing gear for the upcoming fishing season.
CO Cole VanOosten was on fisheries patrol when he observed a vehicle driving towards a closed stream in Mackinac County. CO VanOosten followed the vehicle in a discreet manner and was able to observe the three occupants at the river with headlamps. CO VanOosten observed one individual with a large spear as he walked the closed trout stream. Contact was made and the individuals admitted to attempting to illegally take steelhead with the spear. The man observed with the spear told CO VanOosten that he had speared hundreds of steelhead from that section of stream over the years. Additionally, it was determined that the man did not possess a fishing license. Citations were issued for fishing without a license, fishing a closed stream, and possessing a spear on a trout stream. The spear was seized as evidence.
CO Cole VanOosten was on patrol early in the morning of opening day of trout season when a call was received of a road-killed moose. CO VanOosten was able to salvage several hundred pounds of the animal that was brought to a local processor to be processed and donated to local families.
CO Cole VanOosten was on patrol in Luce County when he encountered several individuals camping at a local campground. Two out of the three campsites, who were camping together, had already paid and posted the campsites. The third occupant stated that he was about to pay (despite being there since the previous day). A citation was issued to the man for failure to post campsite and a warning was issued for failure to pay before occupying campsite.
CO Cole VanOosten assisted DNR fisheries staff in sampling walleye in Big Manistique Lake. This knowledge will be beneficial in educating anglers about the population and management practices being implemented on the lake.
CO Ryan Cox was informed from the Otsego County Court that one of his cases had a warrant issued for his suspects regarding an illegal deer case from November of last year. COs Jack Gorno and Cox went to the suspect’s house and served the warrant to the individual and told her that she needed to go to the Otsego District Court to let them know she was served on the warrant so court proceedings can continue.
CO Andrea Albert received a complaint regarding a homemade hunting blind mounted on a trailer that was stolen off state land last deer season. The complainant advised he had seen his blind and trailer at a neighbor’s house, he contacted the person about it, but they were not willing to return it. The person who took the blind told him that it was abandoned, the DNR said he could have it, and he had it weighed and registered with a license plate. CO Albert contacted the suspect at his residence and observed the distinct homemade blind and trailer that matched the description given by the complainant. The subject stated he saw the trailer on state land last deer season and had contacted the Michigan State Police (MSP) Post in Gaylord inquiring if he could take it. He also claimed he put a note on it. CO Albert explained that a hunting blind is not considered abandoned unless it is on public land after the last day of the deer season to September 1st and he had no right to take it. The subject was upset because he had paid to get it weighed and registered. CO Albert advised him that he could be charged with stealing the blind, but the owner just wanted it back. The subject agreed to give the blind back to the owner, who immediately came and picked it up.
COs Andrea Albert and Ryan Cox contacted a subject fishing on the opening day of trout season. When asked for his fishing license, the angler stated it was in his truck. He went to a truck and took a license out of a wallet and presented it to the CO. CO Albert noticed the date of birth was that of a person his father’s age. When confronted with this information, he stated his dad bought him a license and he thought that one was it. Further investigation found the subject took the license out of his father’s wallet and presented it as his own as he had not purchased a license. A ticket was issued for the violation.
CO Chad Baldwin responded to a complaint of a youth hunter harvesting two turkeys. His father was accompanying him during the hunt and self-reported the illegal turkey. Upon listening to both versions of the events that occurred that day, CO Baldwin determined the youth made a mistake and did not realize there was another turkey standing behind the one he had his sights on. The youth was wearing hearing protection and did not hear his father tell him to wait for the second turkey to pass by. CO Baldwin explained to the youth the importance of always knowing what is behind your intended target and to learn from his mistake going forward in his hunting career. CO Baldwin seized the turkey and donated it to a church with an upcoming wildlife dinner.
CO Chad Baldwin located an abandoned campsite on state land that appeared to have been there for some time. CO Baldwin located a name in all the trash left behind and was able to track down the owner of most of the contents. The owner stated she did not know all her belongings were out there and blamed an ex-boyfriend for leaving them on state land. CO Baldwin gave the owner 48 hours to have the site cleaned up or face a fine. Upon inspection of the site several day later, CO Baldwin verified the cleanup was complete and no trash was left in the area.
CO Adam LeClerc responded with multiple public service agencies to a threat at Alanson Schools. The schools were placed in lock down and the building cleared. Once cleared, the students and staff were evacuated from the building and a thorough search of the school was conducted.
CO Tom Oberg received a Report All Poaching (RAP) complaint regarding witnesses who saw two individuals park their vehicle at the entrance of a state forest campground in Otsego County and proceed to throw a large bag of garbage on the ground and then leave the area. CO Oberg responded and located the trash. CO Oberg located court documentation and a police report in the trash which showed a suspect/address and suspect vehicle matching the description the complainants gave. CO Oberg proceeded to the address in Crawford County and located the suspect vehicle in the driveway. CO Oberg witnessed two subjects exit the residence and CO Oberg asked to speak to the person who was listed on the paperwork. They identified themselves but began to lie when CO Oberg questioned them about the trash. CO Oberg then advised them he found court paperwork and a police report pertaining to them in the trash, and multiple witnesses saw their vehicle. The suspect then admitted to the trash dumping and became very apologetic. CO Oberg issued a ticket to the subject for littering and advised them to pick up the trash. CO Oberg verified the next day that the trash was picked up.
COs Tim Rosochacki and Matt Theunick responded to a wildfire in the Pigeon River Country State Forest near a state forest campground. The fire appeared to have started from a small campfire along the High-Country Pathway. CO Theunick is continuing the investigation.
COs Jon Sheppard and Alex Bourgeois responded to a residence in Alpena County where a woman was shooting a gun out the window while the husband was attempting to get the gun out of her possession. The COs responded to the scene, with Alpena County Sheriff’s deputies and MSP troopers. The officers cleared the residence and secured the firearm. The female was transported to the hospital for evaluation.
CO Alex Bourgeois assisted CO Jesse Grzechowski in looking for anglers who were potentially fishing in a closed area of the Black River in Alcona County. CO Grzechowski saw a parked vehicle on Malarski Road which runs parallel to the closed section of the Black River. The property that runs along that section of the river is also posted against trespassing. CO Bourgeois arrived on scene and sat on Malarski Road in case the anglers tried to leave. CO Grzechowski found the anglers fishing along the riverbank. The anglers were brought back to the COs’ patrol trucks where a ticket was issued for fishing on a closed trout stream. Verbal warnings were given to the anglers for recreational trespass.
CO Alex Bourgeois checked for fishing activity along Wolf Creek which is a closed trout stream. CO Bourgeois found a large group of anglers fishing from Wolf Creek Park. CO Bourgeois contacted the anglers and advised them that the section of Wolf Creek was closed. CO Bourgeois brought the anglers back to his patrol truck where he checked their licenses and gear. It was discovered that one of the anglers was using a prohibited size hook along trout streams and did not have a fishing license. A ticket was issued to the angler for fishing a closed trout stream, fishing without a fishing license, and using a single hook > ½ inch. The other anglers were issued a ticket for fishing a closed trout stream.
CO Alex Bourgeois checked Fletcher Dam on Fletcher Pond for fishing activity. CO Bourgeois conducted an enforcement check on anglers along the bank. While checking the anglers, CO Bourgeois observed a stringer tied to a log down the river hidden next to some weeds. CO Bourgeois pulled the stringer in and found a northern pike and largemouth bass on the stringer. CO Bourgeois asked who caught the fish and two of the anglers admitted to catching them. CO Bourgeois took photographs of the fish for evidence and released them since they were still alive. It was also discovered that one of the anglers did not have a fishing license. A ticket was issued to the two anglers for possessing a northern pike and bass out of season. The angler without a fishing license was also issued a ticket for fishing without a license.
CO Paul Fox was on patrol during the opener of turkey season when he contacted two hunters driving through the woods in their vehicle. The subjects were scouting for turkeys after an unsuccessful morning hunt. Upon checking the subjects hunting licenses and firearms, it was discovered that both subjects failed to fully unload their shotguns and were in possession of loaded firearms in the vehicle. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Dan Liestenfeltz was checking anglers in a canal on West Twin Lake. When speaking with one of the anglers, it was determined that he had caught 20 bluegills that morning that were cleaned and not on scene. The angler had 16 bluegills currently in his possession and did not have a fishing license. CO Liestenfeltz reminded the subject of the daily possession limits for bluegill and issued a ticket for fishing without a valid license. CO Liestenfeltz allowed the subject to keep five bluegill and the rest were given to a nearby angler per the request of the subject.
CO Dan Liestenfeltz signed a three-count felony arrest warrant for a subject out of Montmorency County. The subject was charged with three counts of felonious assault from an incident CO Liestenfeltz investigated earlier in the year. CO Liestenfeltz arrested the subject without issue and lodged in jail.
CO Sidney LaLonde responded to a fire in Montmorency County. As the fire officers were cleaning up the following morning, they could hear guns shooting nearby and thought some rounds were hitting trees in their direction. CO LaLonde told the fire officers to evacuate the area and responded quickly to the scene. CO LaLonde contacted subjects on private land who were target practicing. CO LaLonde explained the purpose of legal backstops for firearms and why it is important to always know what is behind your target. A report was submitted to the prosecutor’s office for review.
CO Logan Turner was dispatched to a wildfire in Grand Traverse County. Upon arrival, the fire had spread to approximately 16 acres and on multiple different landowner properties. An MSP helicopter was on scene dumping water to help put out the fire. The individual who started the fire stated that she had put a plastic Christmas tree in the burn barrel and did not put the lid back on. The plastic melted out of the barrel and ignited the surrounding area. After inspecting the burn barrel, it was found that there were many household products in the barrel, including dozens of diapers. The individual was cited for failing to prevent the spread of a wildfire.
CO Zack Walters attended the annual Northport Sportsman’s Club kids fishing derby at the Mill Pond.
CO Josiah Killingbeck received a complaint that a landlord had evicted a tenant and a deer was hanging in the back yard. CO Killingbeck responded to the scene and discovered an 8-point buck was hanging behind the house that had been there for some time, along with a spike horn. CO Killingbeck was able to determine that the tenant has not had a deer license since 2017 and was not issued any salvage permits for deer struck by vehicles. Further investigation showed that the tenant was a convicted felon. Ammunition and a firearm were also recovered from the residence. The investigation is ongoing.
CO Josiah Killingbeck received a report of traps that had been left out. CO Killingbeck responded to the area where a camp was located for the opening day of trout season. The anglers had found the traps and a dead raccoon. CO Killingbeck was able to determine who the traps belonged to, and an interview was conducted. The trapper told CO Killingbeck that he had misplaced a few traps. CO Killingbeck explained to the trapper that he was responsible for checking his traps and making sure he knows where they are. A report is being sent to the Lake County prosecutor.
CO Kevin Bunce attended the Leroy Elementary School’s Mother/Son event. CO Bunce brought along a fur kit, complete with a variety of Michigan’s game species. The well attended event saw more than 50 mothers and sons.
CO Ben Shively was patrolling federal land on the spring turkey opener when he encountered a motorhome coming towards him on the single lane road. CO Shively moved off the roadway to allow the motorhome to pass and recognized it from a campsite down the road. CO Shively continued his patrol and when passing the campsite, the motorhome had come from, he smelled a strong septic smell. CO Shively checked the campsite and found a large area where the motorhome had been parked, which was now standing sewage water. CO Shively turned around and made his way out to the main road where he followed small spots of liquid on the dirt roads and was able to stop the operator, conduct an interview, and cite the operator for litter.
PCO Brandon Benedict and CO Jeffery Ginn responded to a call of a bicyclist lying down on the side of the road. When the COs arrived, the male subject was walking down the road with the bike. After a brief investigation, it was determined that he was lying down to rest on the side of the road. It was also determined the individual had warrants and was subsequently taken into custody by the COs.
PCO Brandon Benedict and CO Jeffery Ginn, while patrolling federal land for turkey hunters, observed a juvenile walking into the woods. As the COs approached the area, the juvenile attempted to hide behind some downed logs. PCO Benedict contacted the individual, and it was determined he/she was a runaway and turned over to a legal guardian.
Sgt. Mike Bomay was patrolling the Muskegon River on the walleye opener and assisted a vessel operator that had broken down. The vessel was disabled and drifting downstream past the boating access site. The passengers of the vessel were attempting to reach the dock and tossed a dog leash as a line to Sgt. Bomay to pull the vessel to the dock. No fish were taken, and the novice anglers were happy to be back on shore.
CO John Huspen was contacted by an MSP trooper out of Alpena and asked to handle an ORV accident reported by Munson Hospital of Grayling. Upon arrival at the emergency room, CO Huspen was greeted by staff and given not one but two ORV accidents. CO Huspen talked with both subjects who had minor injuries. CO Huspen explained the need to report any ORV accident if there was more than $100 damage or personal injury. No citations were issued.
While patrolling the Manistee River in Kalkaska County, CO Jacob Hamilton checked three anglers fishing a Type 4 section of the river prior to April 29th. CO Hamilton asked one of the anglers how the fishing had been. The angler hesitated and then said they did not do very well but had caught a couple fish. CO Hamilton asked if they had kept any of the fish and the angler appeared to get nervous and said that he had one in the back of the truck. The angler showed CO Hamilton the fish and stated that it was a brown trout. A citation was issued for possessing trout out of season.
CO Charlie Jones followed up on a complaint in Roscommon County where a turkey hunter had located a bobcat stuck in a foothold trap. CO Jones contacted CO Matt Zultak for assistance. The COs released the bobcat without incident. Identification tags were located on the traps and a suspect was contacted. The suspect stated he had forgotten about the traps he set during season, which resulted in trapping a bobcat out of season. Multiple warnings were given, and a citation was issued for trapping bobcat out of season. Bobcat season in Unit D closed December 29th.
CO Matt Zultak observed a Chevrolet Tahoe operating in the roadway on a state highway closed to ORVs, travelling well over 25 miles per hour (mph). The vehicle did not have a visible license plate but had an ORV license adhered to the rear of it. CO Zultak conducted a traffic stop, and asked the operator if the vehicle was registered through Secretary of State (SOS) and had insurance. The operator advised CO Zultak, that it was not required because the vehicle was an ORV. CO Zultak informed the operator he was operating his ORV, in the roadway, on a closed highway, above the allowed 25 mph. The subject was issued a citation for operation of an ORV in the roadway and received warnings for operation at a speed greater than reasonable and operation on a closed road.
CO Cheyanna Rizor received a complaint in Clare County about an angler fishing on a closed trout stream prior to the trout opener. CO Rizor arrived at the middle branch of the Tobacco River where the complainant had given a description of the vehicle that was parked at the river. CO Rizor went on foot and contacted the angler walking along the stream with fishing gear. During the interview, the angler admitted to fishing in the stream. The angler claimed he was not aware the stream was closed. A citation was issued to the angler for possession of fishing gear on a closed trout stream. A verbal warning was given for recreational trespassing.
While on patrol on the Tittabawassee River, COs Paul Lyden and Jacob Daniel came across a boat with an expired registration. The COs approached the boat and advised them they had an expired registration. CO Daniel asked how the fishing had been and if they had any on board and the anglers advised they had two walleyes. One of the walleyes measured to be only 14 inches. The anglers stated they were confused about the regulations and thought the cut off for the 13-inch requirement was the Center Road bridge on the Tittabawassee River. The COs educated them on where the correct location is for the regulation on the Saginaw River and cited one angler for taking/possessing a walleye under the 15-inch requirement.
CO Jason King responded to a recreational trespass complaint in Saginaw County. The complainant reported that a subject shot two turkeys on private property where they did not have permission to hunt. Information given also stated that one of the turkeys did not have a beard. CO King contacted the complainant and began an investigation of the area. Upon locating the exact location of where the turkeys were harvested, CO King found feathers, blood, shotgun wads, bird shot impact, and footprints in the field. CO King was able to follow footprints and an occasional turkey feather to a location from where the suspects departed from. CO King spoke to the landowner at that location and was able obtain the names and a photo of two hunters that shot the turkeys. CO King contacted the possible suspects by phone and discovered their current location in Bay County. CO King drove to that location and interviewed the possible suspects. CO King located the two bearded turkeys both with kill-tags attached at the suspects’ residences. After interviewing both suspects, it was determined that there were no other violations committed other than the recreational trespass. The victim landowner decided to cut the violators a break and not press charges, but warnings were given for the trespass.
While on an ORV patrol in Midland County, CO Jacob Daniel was at an intersection when he noticed an ORV driving near the center of the road and over 25 mph. CO Daniel conducted a traffic stop and found the driver to be operating under the influence of alcohol. Open intoxicants were also found in the ORV. The driver was lodged at Midland County Jail for operating an ORV under the influence along with being charged with open intoxicants in an ORV.
While checking a popular fishing location in Greenville, PCO Jacob Robinson and CO Mike Haas contacted a group of anglers fishing and smoking marijuana. The COs warned the anglers for the public use of marijuana and discovered one of the men had not purchased a fishing license since 2018. The angler without a fishing license also had a warrant for his arrest issued out of Ionia County. A citation was issued to address the fishing violation, he was arrested for his warrant and lodged at the Montcalm County Jail until Ionia deputies were available to pick him up.
COs Justin Ulberg, Jackie Miskovich, and PCO Wes Butler went to a career fair at Kenowa Hills High School. During their time there, they spoke to many high school students regarding the DNR, and the role conservation officers have in enforcing the fish and game laws of Michigan. The students were educated on the different divisions within the DNR and the critical role that each of them play in protecting and preserving the natural resources in Michigan.
While patrolling Hillsdale County, CO Chris Reynolds responded to a call of an individual who assaulted two runners and was actively fighting another individual on a roadway. CO Reynolds assisted local deputies with arresting the uncooperative individual, who was under the influence of an unknown substance. CO Reynolds also assisted the deputies at the jail where the individual became agitated and aggressive, assaulting one of the officers. CO Reynolds helped maintain control of the individual and assisted with placing him into a jail cell.
COs Chris Reynolds and Nick Thornton worked an area on the Hillsdale and Branch County line investigating individuals who were taking deer and turkey without proper licenses. The individuals were observed operating an ORV on the roadway with multiple ORV violations, including two loaded, uncased shotguns. CO Reynolds spoke with the individuals about past hunting and what they had harvested. The individuals stated they have not had much success in recent years. CO Reynolds presented date stamped photos of deer and turkey that had been shot in previous years by these individuals. The individuals confessed to taking a deer and turkey in previous years without having licenses to do so. Citations were issued for having loaded, uncased firearms on the ORV and a report will be submitted for taking a deer and turkey in previous years without a license.
Following up on an anonymous DNR RAP complaint that an individual had live-trapped a squirrel and let it die in the trap, CO Marc Mankowski conducted an interview of the suspect who claimed he had planned on transporting the squirrel away from his house to prevent more squirrels from entering through holes in their roof. CO Mankowski requested DNR dispatch to run a file check on the suspect and he ended up having five warrants for his arrest for various violations. The suspect was taken into custody and booked at the county jail without incident.
COs Dan Walzak and Ariel Young stopped for a crash that occurred only seconds before. A pickup truck hauling a trailer loaded with ORVs hit a bump in the road causing the trailer to bounce up and become disconnected from the vehicle. The safety chains failed, and the trailer struck another vehicle. Nobody was injured in the crash. Tying everything up, CO Walzak observed as the trailer was re-attached to the pickup and secured. The driver of the vehicle lifted on the tongue of the trailer and CO Walzak noticed a lot of play in the connection. CO Walzak had observed earlier that the hitch on the truck had three sizes on it and the 1 7/8-inch ball was being used. CO Walzak asked the driver if he was certain that the right ball was used for the coupler and the driver responded, “Well, let’s check.” The driver turned the hitch to the two-inch ball and set the trailer coupler down over it. The coupler locked onto it securely.
While checking a local boat launch, CO Ariel Young was checking some anglers who found decent luck while out fishing. While checking the fish of the anglers, CO Young found that one of the walleyes was too short to possess. When questioning the anglers about knowing the size and possession limits, it was determined that the anglers believed the size limit was 12 inches for the Detroit River. CO Young educated the individuals and issued a citation for possession of a walleye undersize. The individuals were also given a copy of the 2023 Fishing Guide.
CO Cody Bourgeois worked the opening day of trout season at Proud Lake Recreation Area. CO Bourgeois checked many people who were enjoying the day fishing along the Huron River. On his way out, the CO noticed a group of individuals eating lunch in one of the parking lots far from the normal fishing parking lots. CO Bourgeois noticed a pair of wet waders sitting alongside the truck. CO Bourgeois pulled into the lot to see how the anglers did fishing. During the check, the four individuals dumped out a cooler of twenty fish, a mixed bag of rainbow trout and brown trout. Looking at the pile of fish that lay in front of him the CO knew right away the anglers were over their limit. The CO did measure the smallest fish in the cooler, which were several inches over the limit. When asked what the anglers used to measure, they shrugged and said they looked small enough. Each angler was over their three fish greater than 15 inches limit by two. Each angler was cited for two fish over their limit. The fish were seized and donated to several local families in need.
CO Cody Bourgeois worked two Stonegarden shifts. These patrols yielded several citations, which included: fish no license tickets, no vessel registrations, a slow no wake ticket, over the limit of fishing lines, and several hundred fishing checks.
CO Cody Bourgeois was on his way home from working in Macomb when a vehicle drove past him way above the speed limit. The CO paced the vehicle at 73 mph in a 55-mph zone. The CO conducted a traffic stop and had suspicion that the subject may be impaired. After putting the suspect through a series of observations, the CO determined that the subject was not under the influence and issued the suspect a speeding ticket for 65 mph in a 55-mph zone.
CO Joshua Salas was on patrol in Oakland County for the trout opener when he observed an individual on a kayak coming in from a morning of fishing. The CO contacted the individual and conducted a check on the individual. The individual showed the CO five trout that he had caught that morning. The CO advised the individual that only three trout 15 inches or greater are allowed. The CO issued the individual a citation for the violation and seized the over-limit of trout.
CO Luke Robare worked Stonegarden and at the end of his shift he received a RAP complaint of two individuals taking an over limit of trout on the Clinton River. CO Robare contacted the first subject who stated he just got to the fishing site. CO Robare gained consent to search the subject’s vehicle and found a plastic grocery bag full of 13 rainbow trout. CO Robare issued the subject a citation. The other subject in the complaint saw CO Robare before he contacted him and dumped his fish into the river.
While Sgt. Jason Becker was checking anglers along the Huron River in Proud Lake Recreation Area, he spoke with some lucky anglers who stated they had a limit of trout. Sgt. Becker observed that one angler had a stringer of five trout. Through the conversation, the angler stated he measured all the fish and was aware that only three of the five could be larger than 15 inches. Sgt. Becker measured the fish and all five were larger than 15 inches. The angler stated he measured them with a keychain lanyard. He and Sgt. Becker measured the lanyard at 17 inches. The angler was issued a citation for possessing more than three trout larger than 15 inches.
CO Joshua Salas was on patrol when he observed a vehicle with no headlights operating at night. The CO conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle. The CO obtained identification from the passenger of the vehicle and discovered that the individual had an outstanding warrant for the destruction of property. The warrant was confirmed through Station 20 Dispatch, the individual was arrested, and lodged on the warrant.
PCO Les Bleil and CO Brandon Hartleben were checking boating access sites for activity in Washtenaw County when they observed a vessel with two anglers heading towards the Portage Lake Boating Access Site. PCO Bleil contacted the subjects as they approached the launch. The vessel was being operated with an electric trolling motor and was displaying a 2008 registration. PCO Bleil completed his fishing and marine safety checks and discovered that there was not a single PFD aboard the vessel. The subjects were educated on marine safety laws and the need to register a vessel being operated by a gas or electric motor. The owner of the vessel was cited for operating an unregistered vessel and both subjects were warned for not having a PFD.
PCO Les Bleil and CO Brandon Hartleben received a complaint the day before the spring turkey opener of a subject that was believed to be baiting turkey on private property. Due to the short turnaround, PCO Bleil and CO Hartleben attempted to confirm the presence of bait at the location. While checking the area, PCO Bleil observed a subject near the suspect blind with a white bucket, who was throwing bait out of the bucket. PCO Bleil made contact the next morning with a subject who was hunting out of the same blind observed the previous day. The subject was in fact hunting over a substantial amount of bird seed that he had scattered in front of the blind. PCO Bleil issued the subject a citation for hunting turkey over bait and instructed him to remove the remaining bait from the area.
PCO Les Bleil, CO Brandon Hartleben, and CO Mike Drexler hosted a traditional two-day hunter safety course for a private group in Washtenaw County. The first day of classroom instruction took place at Maybury State Park, and the firearms instruction and live fire was conducted at Sharonville Shooting Range on day two. Nine students, eight youth and one adult, successfully completed the course and received their hunter safety certificate.
CO Brandon Vacek was checking several groups of anglers fishing at the DTE Hot Ponds in downtown Monroe when he observed an angler with three rods in front of him, while reeling in a fourth. The subject initially stated he was watching a pole for a friend that went to the store, but his story was determined to be a lie after further questioning by the CO. Upon an inspection of the angler’s cooler, it was determined he was in possession of one channel catfish under the legal-size limit. The angler was issued a citation for possession of channel catfish under the legal-size limit and fishing with more than three lines.
CO Nicholas Ingersoll was checking anglers at the DTE Hot Ponds, when he encountered a group of six anglers with several white bass. After CO Ingersoll counted the fish, it was determined that the anglers were 31 fish over the limit. CO Ingersoll seized the white bass and issued citations for possessing an over-limit of white bass.
CO Nicholas Ingersoll was checking anglers at the DTE Hot Ponds when he contacted two anglers who were in possession of channel catfish without a fishing license. CO Ingersoll cited both individuals for possessing fish without a fishing license and the fish were seized.
While conducting a stationary patrol at Belle Isle, CO Ariel Young observed a vehicle enter the park with a juvenile standing up through the sunroof, obviously not properly secured with a safety belt. CO Young conducted a traffic stop and upon interviewing the occupants, it was discovered that they thought it was okay since they were driving slowly. CO Young educated the driver and passengers on the importance of safety belts and issued the driver a citation for failing to have the minor properly secured in a safety belt.
Conducting a radar patrol at Belle Isle, CO Ariel Young observed a vehicle travelling 53 mph in a 25-mph posted zone. CO Young conducted a traffic stop and the driver admitted to driving too fast and not seeing the speed limit sign until it was too late. The driver was issued a citation for speeding.
CO Danielle Zubek worked a Belle Isle shift and multiple warnings were given for parking violations and cars standing in the fire lane. CO Zubek issued two citations for cars speeding over 50 mph in a 25-mph zone and issued a citation for a car parked in the fire lane.