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Conservation Officer (CO) Brian Lasanen and Sergeant (Sgt.) Marc Pomroy conducted an off-road vehicle (ORV) safety course for students at Dollar Bay, Lake Linden, and Chassell Schools. Approximately 80 students attended the course and received their ORV safety certificates.

COs Shannon Wicklund and Jared Ferguson attended the Mid-County Sportsman’s Club Hunter’s Safety course in Menominee County. The COs taught students various hunting laws and regulations.

CO Jared Ferguson was patrolling inland lakes and ORV trails when he came upon a side-by-side stopped on the trail that had run out of gas. The operator advised he had a full 5 gallon gas can back at his vehicle so CO Ferguson advised him to stay put with his family and he would go grab it for him. CO Ferguson located the man’s vehicle and returned with his five gallons which was enough to get him to the gas station to fill up completely. The operator was very happy with the CO’s actions.

COs Jeremy Sergey and Anna Viau attended a career fair at Northern Michigan University. Several hundred high school students from around the area attended and engaged with the COs about the role of a Michigan conservation officer.

CO Cody Smith worked the smelt runs in L’Anse on multiple occasions. For one evening, CO Smith observed two subjects fill their buckets and put them in their vehicle. They then returned and continued to catch well beyond their limit. CO Smith made contact and caught the two anglers with over ten gallons of smelt, well beyond the legal two gallons per person allowed. Each angler received a citation for take over-limit of smelt.


CO Steve Butzin assisted the Delta County Sheriff’s Department and the Michigan State Police (MSP) in the search for a missing kayaker in Little Bay de Noc. After several days of searching, the missing kayaker was located deceased in the bay. Agencies utilized side scanning sonar, under water cameras, and dive units in the recovery of the individual. It was later determined that this individual was not wearing a personal flotation device (PFD) while operating the kayak.

While returning to his residence, CO Robert Freeborn received a call from local dispatchers regarding a breaking and entering in progress at a local camp. CO Freeborn was advised he currently was the only officer available to respond. Upon arrival, it appeared that the suspect had already left the scene. After checking the camp, no forced entry was observed. CO Freeborn contacted the landowner and confirmed that he had a notification on his camera someone was around his gate and walked towards his camp and figured they were going to break in. CO Freeborn reviewed the pictures provided by the landowner and determined that it was a forester from a local timber company who was only there to check on the adjacent land owned by their company.

CO Michael Evink arrested an individual on an outstanding warrant from the firearm deer season. The individual was lodged at the Schoolcraft County Jail.

CO Justin Vinson instructed a four-day Hunter Safety education course that was held in Engadine.

CO Mike Olesen was on patrol in Chippewa County when he received a call regarding a fire on a day no burn permits were being issued due to weather conditions. CO Olesen arrived on the scene and observed an active burn pile consisting of wooden planks. The property owner was cited for burning without a permit.

CO Cole VanOosten was on patrol in Mackinac County when he observed an ORV approach a state highway. CO VanOosten watched as the operator waited near the highway until CO VanOosten was out of sight. CO VanOosten stopped and watched at a distance, as the man turned onto the state highway and began operating at a high rate of speed towards the next county road. A traffic stop was conducted, and the man was issued a citation for operating on the state highway. This was the man’s third citation for an ORV related offense.

COs Justin Vinson and Cole VanOosten put on a Hunter Education field day at the Hiawatha Sportsman’s Club. Stations included rifle, shotgun and archery shooting, and a trapping demonstration.

CO Cole VanOosten assisted Wildlife Division staff in completing a kids trappers’ workshop in Mackinac County. This five-hour course covered different types of trapping, including what is legal and ethical trapping, as well as fur handling. Divisions involved in assisting included Finance and Operations, Parks and Recreation, Wildlife, Fisheries, and Law Enforcement Division (LED). Approximately 26 kids attended along with numerous parents who also participated with their children.

COs Scott Pankow and Sgt. Calvin Smith were patrolling the St. Mary’s River when they observed a boat being operated with an expired registration. The COs contacted the operator and asked if they had a valid registration. The operator stated that he had purchased the boat last summer and thought that he had one. A quick check with Station 20 revealed that the boat was never transferred to the new owner as required. A citation was issued for operating a boat with an expired registration and a verbal warning was given for failing to transfer title.


CO Chad Baldwin attended a youth day at the Charlevoix Rod and Gun Club. He spoke with over 200 kids and presented an assortment of animal furs. CO Baldwin was able to give the kids an up-close look at some animals that most of them had never had an opportunity to see and touch before. The kids, along with their families, participated in a variety of activities including, fishing for trout in the pond, clay pigeon shooting, archery shooting, marksmanship shooting with .22 caliber rifles, and fly tying.

CO Chad Baldwin was searching for an ORV that was involved in a private property trespass complaint when he came across two all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) operating down the road without helmets. CO Baldwin conducted a traffic stop and the operators said they were picking mushrooms and not driving fast. They also stated they did not know they needed helmets because, “motorcycle riders don’t need helmets.” CO Baldwin ticketed both operators for operating ORVs without helmets and escorted them back home.

CO Nathan Beelman was first on scene for a four-car accident. CO Beelman checked the occupants of the involved vehicles for injuries and provided information for responding officers. Luckily, the occupants only had minor injuries despite the damage to the vehicles at the scene. CO Beelman assisted with traffic control and gathered information from the involved parties for the sheriff’s department.

CO Kyle Cherry was on patrol in Otsego County when he responded to a report of a head-on motor vehicle crash with injury. CO Cherry responded, along with MSP troopers and Otsego County emergency medical services (EMS) and assisted in rendering first aid. CO Cherry applied a tourniquet to the female driver who was involved in the collision. The driver was airlifted to Munson Traverse City Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries. Alcohol was believed to be a factor in the crash.

CO Alex Bourgeois received a complaint of someone baiting for deer in Alpena. The suspect had been warned once before and received two prior tickets for the baiting within the past year. CO Bourgeois arrived at the home and observed a pile of corn in the front lawn. CO Bourgeois contacted the suspect and issued a third ticket for baiting deer.

CO Sidney LaLonde, along with Corporal Mike Hearn, taught at an ORV safety course that was put on by the Lake County Sheriff's Department. The course was designed for new deputies enforcing ORV laws across Michigan.

CO Sidney LaLonde reported the disposition of a trespass and loaded firearm in a vehicle case out of Presque Isle County. The adult subject pled guilty to two loaded firearms in a motor vehicle and allowing a minor to hunt unaided. The subject was ordered to pay $575 in fines and costs, forfeit the firearms, and lost his hunting privileges for the next two years.

COs Sidney LaLonde and Jack Gorno were present at the Sturgeon for Tomorrow Tour and gathering at the sturgeon spawning grounds. The COs, along with board members of Sturgeon for Tomorrow, two state legislators, Michigan State University fish research biologists and Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fisheries division were present. The COs answered questions about protecting the sturgeon, their patrols, and other law related questions. 

CO Dan Liestenfeltz was patrolling in Montmorency County when he observed a motorcycle passing multiple vehicles in a reckless manner. The motorcycle also appeared to be operating at a high rate of speed. CO Liestenfeltz used his RADAR speed measurement device and observed the motorcycle traveling approximately 107 mph in a 55-mph zone. CO Liestenfeltz initiated a traffic stop on the motorcycle. After speaking with the driver, it was determined that they had six warrants for their arrest, they were operating on a suspended driver’s license, there was no insurance on the motorcycle, and it was not registered. CO Liestenfeltz issued the driver citations for the speed violation, operating on a suspended license, and no insurance. The warrants were all out of pick-up range and the subject was advised and released on the warrants. The motorcycle was towed from the scene.

COs Dan Liestenfeltz and Sidney LaLonde were patrolling a piece of state land north of Atlanta in Montmorency County. This specific area has ongoing problems with littering, homelessness, and higher crime rates. Upon checking a camp, the COs contacted a subject who appeared to be under the influence of narcotics. After gaining a consent search of the tent, the COs located drug paraphernalia such as needles, spoons, and other drug residue.  They also located a large amount of a methamphetamine, fentanyl, and heroin combination in a baggy. This substance was tested and confirmed. The COs placed the subject into custody and lodged them without issue. Felony charges for the possession of drugs will be pending with the Montmorency County Prosecutor’s Office.


COs Josiah Killingbeck and Ryan Andrews assisted the Lake County Sheriff’s Office with the first in the state ORV training academy to certify candidates to become ORV enforcement officers. The academy was a success and there was a lot of positive feedback from the candidates who completed the training.

CO Kevin Bunce was on patrol in Mecosta County when he encountered an individual fishing at Rogers Dam. The individual stated he had been having a successful day catching crappie, walleye, and smallmouth bass. When asked if he had any fish in his possession, the individual showed CO Bunce a stringer containing five smallmouth bass and one walleye. CO Bunce asked if he knew the season/possession dates for bass, to which the angler stated, “Isn’t it the same as trout opener?”  The possession season for bass was over two weeks away (which starts the Saturday before Memorial Day). The angler was encouraged to download the fishing digest for continued education on fishing dates and limits. The subject was cited for taking bass during the closed season.

While on patrol in Newaygo County, CO Tim Barboza received a complaint from RAP of three vehicles tearing up farm fields at the south end of the Muskegon State Game Area. CO Barboza patrolled to the area and located a Jeep and two trucks causing erosive conditions in the game area. CO Barboza conducted a traffic stop on the vehicles and contacted the drivers. Two of the three vehicles had no insurance, none had valid registration, and one had no windshield. CO Barboza cited all three drivers for the illegal operation in the farm fields and gave several warnings for the motor vehicle violations. CO Barboza had the drivers bring a trailer to remove the vehicles without insurance.

While on patrol around midnight in Newaygo County, CO Tim Barboza observed a van parked in the exit lane of a parking lot and a subject walking back to the van who looked to be in distress. CO Barboza pulled in and contacted the subject walking and encountered a female who was crying. CO Barboza observed the van did not have a license plate. A male was in the driver’s seat with the van running and was yelling to CO Barboza. The male hopped out of the van and CO Barboza obtained his identification and asked what was going on. While speaking with the male, CO Barboza smelled intoxicants coming from the subject and observed blood shot and watery eyes. CO Barboza asked the male when he drank last, which he responded he had not been drinking. A Fremont Police Department officer arrived on scene and began standardized field sobriety testing (SFST) on the driver while CO Barboza ran the information and spoke with the female passenger. The male was arrested for operating while intoxicated (OWI) and lodged in the Newaygo County Jail by the Fremont Police Department.

Acting Sgt. Ben Shively received a complaint in Oceana County of two subjects turkey hunting who were actively calling in a bird when a pickup truck stopped on the road and a subject exited the passenger side and shot at the bird. The hunters were able to get photos of the truck as it drove away. Sgt. Shively responded to the scene and met with the hunters and checked the field where the bird had been. There was no sign that the road hunters had hit the bird. Sgt. Shively reviewed the photos of the truck, but the license plate was unreadable. Sgt. Shively was able to zoom in on distinct stickers on the back of the topper and get a make and model of the truck. Sgt. Shively began driving around the area and located a truck backed in at a residence that matched the photo. Sgt. Shively pulled into the residence, confirmed the stickers on the topper, and contacted the owner who was in the yard. Sgt. Shively had previously dealt with the owner of the truck numerous times. He explained he was there about the turkey he had shot at. Sgt. Shively received a full confession from the subject who stated he was taking his 12-year-old son turkey hunting and saw the bird and he had his son hop out of the truck and take a shot at the bird. He stated his son missed the bird and they heard the other hunters yelling and drove off. He admitted he had not purchased a turkey license for his son. A warrant will be sought for the father for attempting to take turkey without a license.


COs Charlie Jones and Jacob Hamilton were patrolling Clearwater Township in Kalkaska County when they observed a subject on a dirt bike who was not wearing a helmet and was operating carelessly. Contact was made with the operator. The operator had a revoked driving status. A citation was issued for operating an ORV with a revoked driver's license. Warnings were issued for careless operation, no helmet on ORV, and failing to license an ORV.

CO Jacob Hamilton assisted the Kalkaska County Sheriff's Department with a search for a missing boy. The boy was outside at his residence in South Boardman Township when he disappeared. Shortly after beginning the search, the missing child was found sleeping in a boat near the house.

CO Jeff Panich was patrolling in Negwegon State Park when he observed a dirt bike driving behind him. CO Panich pulled to the side to let the ORV pass when he observed the operator was not wearing a helmet and did not show a current license on the vehicle. CO Panich activated his emergency lights, stopping the vehicle, and advised the man of the reason for the stop. Upon running a check on the operator’s name, CO Panich was notified that the operator had three outstanding warrants in the neighboring county. CO Panich issued a citation for operating without a helmet and subsequently arrested the suspect on the outstanding warrants. The suspect was transported and lodged in the Alpena County Jail. While enroute to the jail, the suspect stated to CO Panich that he knew he needed a helmet and registration and that was the reason he travelled on the back road to cross the county without being caught.

CO Ryan Weakman was patrolling area trout streams in Clare County when he encountered two anglers fishing from a bridge. CO Weakman checked the anglers’ creel and then checked for proper fishing licenses. CO Weakman discovered that one angler didn’t have a fishing license. The angler without the fishing license had told his partner, who happened to be his father-in-law, that he had a license when they started fishing. He later admitted to both of us that he hadn’t purchased a fishing license since last year. CO Weakman cited the angler for fishing without a license. 

CO Cheyanna Rizor attended a Conservation Connection Day in Clare County. CO Rizor educated the attending families on the duties of a Michigan Conservation Officer. CO Rizor provided a presentation on furbearing animals that included a fur kit for the kids to see and handle. The kids had numerous questions about the animals presented.

COs Ryan Weakman and Cheyanna Rizor attended a Hunter Safety class at Jay’s Sporting Goods in Clare County. The COs educated the class about being an ethical hunter and the basic rules and regulations for hunting.

CO Josh Russell was on patrol in Gladwin County when he observed three ORVs operate off the trail in a closed area. CO Russell contacted the ORV operators as they were exiting the closed area. Upon contacting the lead ORV, CO Russell recognized the operator from previous enforcement encounters. CO Russell addressed several issues with the group, which included operating their ORVs past the ‘NO ORV’ signs, creating erosive conditions, no ORV licenses, and operating an ORV with a suspended license. Citations were issued for the violations.

COs Josh Russell and Mike Haas were on patrol along the Chippewa River when they observed several anglers fishing from shore. The COs contacted the anglers and checked fishing licenses. One subject stated he did not have a fishing license. After a license check, it was determined that the subject had not bought a fishing license in four years. A citation was written for the violation.


CO Adam Beuthin was on marine patrol on the Saginaw Bay when he observed a vessel, with two individuals on it, with fishing lines in the water. From a distance, the CO counted three lines more than the legal limit of six lines allowed for the two anglers. The CO contacted the anglers and asked why they had three more than the legal limit of lines. The owner of the vessel advised the CO their buddy didn’t show up that morning, so they were just fishing for him. Despite the sentiment of fishing for their friend, enforcement action was taken, and the men were issued a citation for fishing with more than the legal limit of lines.


CO Ryan Jager and Detective James Zellinger responded to the City of Portage in Kalamazoo County to assist with first responder efforts after a tornado caused severe damage to the area. In addition, CO Cameron Wright assisted in St. Joseph County and utilized a department ATV to get around roads blocked by various debris to start checking the well-being of citizens impacted by the tornado.


CO John Byars represented the Department of Natural Resources, LED (Honor Guard) by attending the Ingham County Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony at the Ingham County Justice Complex in Mason. The ceremony was to honor and support Ingham County’s fallen officers and families. Names of fallen officers were called out and flowers placed by their names on the memorial. CO Byars escorted the family members of a fallen MSP trooper, who placed a flower on his memorial.

CO John Byars represented the DNR LED (Honor Guard) by attending the 30th Annual Candlelight Memorial Service for the Michigan Concerns of Police Survivors. This ceremony was to honor the fallen law enforcement officers and families of Michigan. CO Byars was a wreath guard during the event.

CO Ed Rice gave an ORV presentation for 117 riders at Planet Powersports for the Branch County ORV ride. CO Rice answered questions and concerns surrounding an ORV roadway ordinance recently passed in Branch County. CO Rice focused on ORV safety.


CO Dave Schaumburger was driving on the highway when the vehicle in front of him was unable to maintain their lane for approximately one mile and doing 60 mph in the left lane. Through the rear window, the CO could see the driver operating a phone on the dashboard. The CO stopped the vehicle, and the driver told the officer, “I could not maintain my lane because I was lighting a cigarette, not because I was using my phone.” CO Schaumburger let him know that he had been following for a mile watching him use the phone. A citation was issued for distracted driving.

COs David Schaumburger, Joseph Deppen, Brad Silorey, and Kris Kiel participated in a surveillance-based patrol targeting walleye over-limits and “double trippers,” in the Detroit River. Slightly after the patrol started, the COs observed one subject leave his boat with eight walleye. After being contacted and asked how many fish he had, the subject said, “Six.” As the COs were counting the fish, the subject stated, “Well, there are eight in there, but two are another guy’s and he is still at the marina.” The COs told the subject that they knew he was lying because they had been watching him all day and that there was no other guy. A citation was written for possessing an over-limit of walleye.

COs David Schaumburger, Joseph Deppen, Brad Silorey, and Kris Kiel observed two subjects pulling their walleye from the live well of their boat. As they were counting their gill-slit fish into a bucket, one of the subjects threw their 13th walleye into the water next to their boat, which floated there after they left the area. When contacted, the subjects admitted to having an extra fish, so they tossed it to eliminate getting caught with it. The walleye was retrieved from the water and a citation was written for possessing an over-limit of walleye. Warnings were given for littering and possessing a short walleye that was just under the 15-inch minimum.

COs David Schaumburger, Kris Kiel, Joseph Deppen and Brad Silorey observed three subjects with 18 walleye. They cleaned their fish and left the area. After a few hours, the same three subjects came back and went back out fishing. Upon their return later in the evening, the three subjects came in with 18 more walleye. The subjects from Muskegon were contacted and asked about their luck. After a brief explanation of how the COs had observed them take a “double trip,” limiting out both times, the subjects quickly confessed and gave up the 36 filleted walleye located in a cooler in the bed of their pick-up truck. The subjects stated that they took the over-limit because they had driven from so far away. Citations for possessing an over-limit were written to all three subjects and the walleye fillets were seized.

CO Jaime Salisbury received a RAP complaint regarding a local farmer who had shot several Canada geese with a .22 and left them in the field. CO Salisbury was able to locate three adult and seven juvenile geese, all dead with gunshot wounds. COs Salisbury and Zackary Cardinal interviewed the suspected farmer about the geese. A confession was obtained from the farmer stating that he had shot the geese because they could eat his crops. The firearm used was seized as evidence. Charges for taking geese out of season, using a rifle to take geese, use of toxic ammunition, and wanton waste are being sought, along with reimbursement for the geese.


While running radar on Belle Isle, CO Dave Schaumburger made stops on vehicles traveling 42, 43, 44, and 47 mph. Citations for speeding were issued for the first three speeders. The driver traveling 47 mph also had quite a few traffic warrants, a suspended driving license, and had no insurance on the vehicle. Unfortunately for him, his car was towed for those reasons and a citation was issued for driving while license suspended and for excessive speed.

CO Dan Walzak observed a vehicle run a stop sign on Belle Isle. The vehicle barely slowed down before proceeding through the stop sign and continued down the road. Activating emergency lights, CO Walzak brought the vehicle to a stop and watched as the passenger opened his door, dump the entire contents of a large plastic cup of cereal with milk on the pavement, and then drop the plastic cup in the middle of the cereal. CO Walzak also noted that the vehicle was displaying expired tabs. Contacting the driver, CO Walzak asked the driver if he knew why he was being stopped and the driver stated that he did not. When told that he ran the stop sign, the driver stated that he must not have been paying attention. When asked about the expired tabs, the driver stated that he thought the tabs expired at the end of December. Addressing the cereal and cup dropped onto the roadway, the passenger stated that he had the cereal for his pet guinea pig, but the pet was not eating it, so he decided to throw it out. CO Walzak issued citations to the driver for disregarding the stop sign and driving with expired registration. The passenger received a citation for littering.

COs Bob Watson and Sgt. Jason Becker worked a shift on Belle Isle. As soon as the COs began their shift, they received a call of a shooting near the golf course. CO Watson was the first CO on scene and located the injured subject. He was able to provide first aid until EMS arrived and took the subject to the hospital. Sgt. Becker was assisting to make a clear route for EMS. Upon further investigation, it was determined that the Wayne County Sheriff’s Department was attempting to arrest an absconder when the subject pulled a firearm. The deputies then shot the subject. The investigation is being handled by the MSP.

CO Kris Kiel wrote a subject a careless driving ticket on Belle Isle. The subject was clocked at 55 mph in a 25-mph zone and was speeding up from there. It took CO Kiel over a mile to catch up to the subject who couldn’t stay in his lane. The subject was also written a ticket for failing to have a recreation passport in a state park.

COs Sydney Griffor and Griffin Korican worked a Belle Isle shift. While on the island, the COs attended the “Reel Wellness Youth Fishing Day” organized by the D-Rob Cares Foundation. The purpose of the event was to educate the participants of the importance of mental wellness while incorporating basic fishing skills. The COs spoke to the youth about the job of conservation officers, answered questions, and hung out with the youth. Many of the participants have never fished prior to the event and were able to learn basic fishing skills and fish the pier.

CO Nicholas Ingersoll was patrolling Belle Isle when he stopped two vehicles for speeding. Both vehicles were traveling at over double the speed limit. The speed limit on Belle Isle is 25 mph and the vehicles were going 65 mph and 59 mph respectively. Both drivers were enjoying their senior skip day and were issued citations for speeding.

CO Nicholas Ingersoll was patrolling Belle Isle when he observed a vehicle traveling the wrong way on a one-way street. CO Ingersoll stopped the driver who advised she was just heading to the park and did not know it was a one way. It was also determined that the driver had a felony warrant out of the Troy Police Department and a misdemeanor warrant out of the Warren Police Department. The driver was cited for going the wrong way on a one-way street and arrested for her felony warrant, which was confirmed and valid, and she was turned over to the Troy Police Department.

While working a Belle Isle shift, CO Eric Smither observed a vehicle driving at a high rate of speed. CO Smither paced the vehicle at 41 mph in a 25-mph zone. CO Smither conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle and issued a citation for not having insurance.