Department of Natural Resources
Sergeant (Sgt.) Brian Bacon, Corporal (Cpl.) Dave Painter, and Conservation Officer (CO) Anna Viau assisted local law enforcement with responding to a call about a possible active shooter at a church in Dickinson County. When the COs arrived at the church, the subject had already been taken into custody without incident. The subject had been acting suspiciously but had no firearms or other weapons in his possession.
COs John Kamps and Josh Boudreaux were working in south Marquette County. A be on the lookout (BOL) came out regarding a subject driving a white Toyota pickup truck that had made suicidal comments to their father. COs Boudreaux and Kamps were following each other down a narrow dirt road when they were confronted with the suspect vehicle travelling at a high rate of speed. CO Boudreaux had to pull off the road to avoid a collision and CO Kamps activated emergency lights, but the subject did not stop. A chase ensued for approximately 11 miles and reached speeds of 100 mph. During the pursuit, several vehicles were forced off the road by the fleeing Toyota. The suspect finally ended up on a dead-end road and surrendered. Emergency Medical Services (EMS) was called to the scene for a quick evaluation. The subject was then transported to the hospital in Marquette for a psychological evaluation before being lodged in the Marquette County jail for fleeing and eluding and reckless driving.
CO Josh Boudreaux was following up on a trespass complaint in Richmond Township when he discovered fresh ORV tracks leading through a gate that had been previously cut open. CO Boudreaux followed the tracks, which led to Cleveland Cliffs Mine property, where he located two individuals riding double on an unregistered ORV without helmets. After talking with the two, CO Boudreaux learned that the last run in the pair had with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) a few years ago landed them a spot on the TV show “Wardens.” A citation was issued for riding double on an ORV.
CO Jeremy Sergey responded to a complaint in which four deer were dead in a farm field in Menominee County. A short investigation revealed the four deer had been struck by lightning during a storm the night before. The path of the lightning strike could be seen traveling through the fur of the deer
CO Jeremy Sergey and Michigan State Police (MSP) Trooper John Edwards responded to a vessel in distress call late at night in dense fog. The calling source said they heard several short rapid sounds from a foghorn on Lake Michigan over the course of 30 minutes. The officers conducted a search of the area but were unable to locate anything. A search was also conducted in the morning; however, that search also revealed nothing.
Along with several other law enforcement agencies, CO Anna Viau assisted the Upper Peninsula Substance Enforcement Team (UPSET) with the execution of a search warrant at a residence in Iron County. UPSET discovered several illegal substances and evidence of drug distribution. As a result of the search warrant, four individuals were immediately arrested. Further charges will be sought for additional individuals.
COs Steven Butzin, Robert Freeborn and Christopher Lynch were conducting a group grouse decoy patrol in an area known for grouse hunting. The COs encountered one hunter attempt to shoot the decoy from the passenger seat of the vehicle. When advised that it was illegal to shoot from a motor vehicle, one of the hunters stated that they had driven 40 miles and that was the first bird they saw. The individual was issued a citation for possessing a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle.
CO Steven Butzin was off duty and traveling through Rapid River when he noticed a vehicle parked at an intersection with an individual outside the vehicle laying over the curb. CO Butzin called Delta County Central Dispatch as he was turning his vehicle around to check on the individual. They informed CO Butzin that the subject was in anaphylactic shock from a bee sting and was unresponsive. CO Butzin performed what is known as a jaw thrust on the individual to keep his airway open as the subject’s face and lips were purple and he was barely able to breathe. The subject had already been given two doses of an EpiPen. After several minutes, Masonville EMS and the Delta County Sheriff’s Department arrived on scene until Rampart EMS was able to arrive for a transport to the hospital. The individual was discharged from the hospital later that night.
COs Andrea Dani and Mark Zitnik had just finished teaching hunter safety in Eben when Station 20 called them to assist CO Mikael Evink and the MSP on a search and rescue. Two elderly men had gone for a hike in the Thunder Lake area that Wednesday afternoon and did not return home at 6 p.m. According to the spouse of one of the lost men, both men were diabetic and had several other health issues, which worried her. The COs got their equipment they needed to assist in the search and met MSP along with CO Michel Evink and CO Stephen Butzin. After they were briefed on the situation, the team set out to find the lost hikers. CO Dani and Zitnik located the hikers’ vehicle within the hour and then set off on foot with the MSP K9. The officers located the hikers shortly after. The hikers were found in good condition and were happy to have been found before the heavy rainstorm blew in.
Acting Sgt. Robert Freeborn along with COs Mark Zitnik and Michael Evink received a call in the evening from dispatch regarding an overdue hiker/fisherman. Dispatch advised that a subject had been camping in the Big Island Wilderness area and had not returned. Dispatch advised that MSP had located the subject’s vehicle at the wilderness trail head but were unable to navigate the lakes to check and see if he was at his campsite. The COs responded with their canoes and gear and proceeded to locate the fisherman. The COs had to paddle and portage their canoes through four lakes and eventually made it to the lake where the subject was said to be camping. By this time, it was well after midnight and the rain had started to set in. The COs located the subject’s canoe at the campsite and located the subject who was deceased from what appeared to be an accidental injury to his leg. The COs advised dispatch of the situation and documented the scene. While trying to get a game plan of the recovery of the subject, the COs started a fire to keep warm. After several hours of trying for air support, it was determined that the only way out was to back track to the next lake where MSP and local units had made it to the shore with an ORV. The COs loaded the subject in his canoe which was tied off to one of their canoes and paddled back across the lake. Once the COs made it to the trail that connected to the next lake, they unhooked the subject’s canoe and proceeded to portage. The portage was .2 miles long and consisted of steep hills, uneven terrain/fallen trees and exposed roots. After a grueling half hour, the COs were able to get the subject to the next lake. The COs then had to back track to get their gear and then walk back to continue the recovery. The COs located MSP and the other local units on shore where they received help bringing the canoe and subject to a county road where EMS was staged.
CO Adam Leclerc received a call from a tribal conservation officer stating that he found a live bear trap on state land in Emmett County. After reviewing pictures from the tribal COs, CO Leclerc met them on site. CO Leclerc confirmed the trap was not the DNR’s and that someone had placed it there illegally. With assistance from the tribal COs, they started monitoring the area for activity. After a couple days the trap disappeared but they had already gathered enough information on a possible suspect. The COs went to the suspect’s residence and located the live trap and with a search warrant they secured the trap and are now seeking charges with the prosecutor’s office.
While patrolling on Belle Isle, CO Andrea Erratt of Antrim County checked two fishermen on the Detroit River. The first fisherman said he did not have a fishing license, but his brother did, and he thought he could fish under his license. CO Erratt explained he needed his own fishing license and had to ask the man three times for some form of identification (ID). CO Erratt ran a file check that revealed the unlicensed fisherman had four misdemeanor warrants for his arrest, thus explaining his reluctance to turn over his ID. CO Erratt warned the man for fishing without a license but arrested him and transported him to the Detroit Detention Center where he was lodged on his outstanding warrants.
CO Andrea Erratt of Antrim County patrolled Belle Isle on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday checking over 40 fishermen. Before going to Belle Isle, the owners of Stinger Lures in Boyne Falls donated lures to CO Erratt to give to fishermen on Belle Isle. CO Erratt donated Stinger Lures to all the legal fishermen who had purchased their fishing licenses. CO Erratt also donated lures to two teenage boys who had been involved in a property damage car accident. The young driver said he was so excited about going fishing that he had forgotten to look in his blind spot before pulling from the left lane into a parking spot on his right. CO Erratt gave the young fishermen Stinger Lures to hopefully cheer them up a little.
While working Belle Isle on Saturday morning, CO Andrea Erratt of Antrim County and CO Eric Smither of Lenawee County responded to a medical call at a Recovery Walk event involving a woman who had been stung by a bee, was allergic, and did not have an EpiPen. The woman had been stung in the forearm, so CO Erratt had her elevate her arm on CO Smither’s first aid kit and asked a volunteer if they had any ice to put on her arm while they waited for an ambulance. While tending to the woman, two other women came up and said there was another woman having a major medical emergency behind the DJ stage. CO Erratt went to check on the other 63-year-old woman who was sitting in a chair, bent over, moaning, and experiencing extreme chest pains. CO Erratt called for another ambulance and tried to encourage the woman to breath evenly to calm her down. CO Erratt was holding the woman’s hands and encouraging her to stay awake when she started slurring her words and exhibiting other obvious signs of a stroke like paralysis on one side of her face. CO Joseph Myers of Midland County arrived on scene, they moved her to the ground, and he went to direct the ambulance to their location in the crowd. As the ambulance crew arrived, the woman passed out and quit squeezing CO Erratt’s hands. CO Erratt assisted as the ambulance crew revived her, loaded her on a stretcher, and was immediately transported to the hospital.
CO Jon Sklba was patrolling Presque Isle County when he came upon an ORV rollover accident. The driver suffered minor cuts to his head, and the passenger hurt his arm, neck, and head. Both occupants were wearing their seatbelts. The passenger was taken to the hospital, while the driver was checked out on scene and released. The brand-new Polaris Turbo side by side will likely be totaled as it rolled multiple times.
CO William Kinney and Sgt. Dan Bigger were patrolling the Betsie River in Benzie County. The COs were patrolling the river in a boat when they came upon a planer board obstructing the river. The planer board was floating in the middle of the river with a fishing line and lure attached. Adjacent to the river at the local campground, the COs found the fishing pole associated with the planer board. The COs attempted to locate the occupant of the campsite; however, no one was around. After approximately 45 minutes, the occupant returned to his campsite. The angler knew it was illegal to leave his fishing line unattended, and stated he left for lunch. The angler was issued a ticket for the unattended fishing line and the illegally used gear was seized.
COs Andrea Albert and Troy Ludwig were patrolling the Betsie River when they observed an individual they had seen fishing with a rod and reel attempt to take salmon with a net. When the COs contacted the subject, he stated that he was not fishing or trying to net the fish but trying to nudge the fish upstream for his girlfriend to catch. A check with dispatch showed the subject did not have a valid fishing license. A citation was issued for attempting to take fish with a net and a warning was given for fishing without a license.
Lt. Joe Molnar and CO Troy Ludwig were patrolling the Betsie River when they observed two subjects fishing. The first subject hooked a salmon and was able to get the fish to shore. The COs were able to witness exactly where the fish was hooked, which happened to be under the mouth. The subject then looked around and put the fish on a stringer believing no one had seen him retain the foul hooked fish. While the first subject had been attempting to land his fish, the second subject had kept fishing and was sight casting towards salmon and setting the hook with a jerking motion to hook fish outside the mouth. Lt. Molnar contacted the first subject, and as he did, the second subject turned from him and cut his line letting the “lure” and weight fall into the river. Luckily, CO Ludwig happened to be just behind the subject and ordered him to pick up his “lure” and come to shore. The second subject was found to be fishing with two treble hooks, with a bit of yarn attached and a large weight, which was not recovered from the river. The COs issued citations for retaining a foul hooked fish, use of illegal fishing device, and littering.
COs Casey Varriale and Troy Ludwig were patrolling the Betsie River when they observed a subject attempting to hook salmon not in the mouth using a jerking motion at the end of every cast. The COs watched the subject foul hook a fish, which he was unable to land. CO Ludwig made his way behind the subject and watched as he threw his cigarette butt into the river. The CO contacted the subject and issued a citation for attempting to take fish not in mouth and littering.
COs Casey Varriale and Troy Ludwig were patrolling the Betsie River when they received a complaint of subjects fishing within 100 feet of the Homestead Dam. Fishing is not legal in this area because fish congregate at the location while trying to make it over the dam making them easy targets for foul hooking and netting. The COs witnessed six subjects fishing past the 100-foot markers when they arrived on scene. The COs contacted the subjects and issued them all citations.
COs Patrick McManus and Kyle Publiski were patrolling the Betsie River downstream from the Homestead Dam when CO McManus noticed a subject land a fish hooked in the tail and keep it. CO Publiski was busy issuing a citation for recreational trespass at the same time. Once the COs contacted the angler who retained the foul hooked fish and addressed the violation with a citation, it was learned that the subject also had four warrants for his arrest. At that time, the COs took the subject into custody and lodged him at the Benzie County Jail.
COs Patrick McManus and Jason McCullough were partnered up on several patrols of the Betsie River near the Homestead Dam. During one patrol, the COs noticed a group of four subjects fishing together, while one was consistently snagging fish with a fly-fishing rod and reel. The COs watched individual foul hook two fish and keep them, all while bragging to the others about his success. When the four subjects were wrapping up their evening, the COs then observed the subject in question fillet the two fish they kept and throw the carcasses and offal in the river. After following the group to their vehicles, the COs made contact and not only issued two citations to the subject who retained the foul hooked fish and littering in the river but seized the rod and reel for condemnation.
COs Richard Stowe and Casey Varriale worked a day shift on the Betsie River fish patrols. While watching for fishing violations, both COs confronted three different groups of fishermen trespassing on a very heavily signed piece of private property and issued citations to six individuals for recreational trespass.
CO Josiah Killingbeck, while on patrol, observed a vehicle go by him displaying an expired registration tab. CO Killingbeck ran the plate through the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN) and discovered that the plate had been expired since May of 2019. CO Killingbeck stopped the vehicle and was advised by the driver that he had forgotten to renew his plates this year. CO Killingbeck asked the driver if there was insurance on the vehicle and the driver admitted that there was no insurance. The driver was cited for the expired plates and no proof of insurance. The driver ended up admitting that he knew his plate was expired and that there was no insurance and had been driving the vehicle illegally for several months because, “I don’t drive too far.”
CO Ben Shively was on patrol and observed an ORV approaching him on the roadway at a high rate of speed and travelling down the center of the lane. CO Shively activated his radar and received a reading of 54 mph which was more than double the state established speed limit. CO Shively conducted a traffic stop on the ORV and the operator stated that he was running late to get his daughter out for the youth hunt because he had to run to the store to get a can of chew and a case of beer. The subject was cited for unreasonable speed and warned for failing to operate on the shoulder of the road.
CO Ben Shively was working a patrol along the Betsie River in Benzie County with CO Justin Vanderlinde when they observed two subjects on the opposite side of the river. One angler took his net and attempted to net a free-swimming salmon. When he could not get the fish into the net, the second angler grabbed the fish by the tail and took it to shore where he put it on a stringer. COs Shively and Vanderlinde continued to watch the subjects and contacted them at their vehicle where they were cited for taking a fish by an illegal method. The subject that grabbed the fish by the tail was also cited for illegal gear as he was found to be fishing with a bare treble hook.
CO Ben Shively was observing an angler fishing along an Oceana county stream where he has received trespassing complaints in the past. CO Shively watched the angler continue past no trespassing signs and continued to fish the creek. CO Shively watched the angler pass five no trespassing signs and then enter onto shore and walk past additional no trespassing signs. CO Shively contacted with the angler and cited him for recreational trespass.
CO Charlie Jones received a complaint that a few individuals had set up a campsite in Kalkaska County near the South Branch Boardman River. Upon contact, he witnessed four subjects with a large bonfire burning construction materials. After further investigation, it was determined that two of the subjects had outstanding arrest warrants. Both subjects were taken into custody and lodged in the Kalkaska County Jail. A third subject at the location was drying a large amount of marijuana on site. CO Jones seized the marijuana and is working with the Kalkaska County Prosecutor’s Office for charges.
While patrolling Lake Missaukee for waterfowl hunters, CO Micah Hintze observed a group hunting from a boat along a piece of private property. CO Hintze moved in close to the group and was able to hear their conversations. One man pointed out a red-tailed hawk sitting in the trees over CO Hintze’s shoulder. Another hunter raised his shotgun, took aim, and shot the hawk from the limb. CO Hintze contacted the group of hunters. In addition to shooting the hawk and trespassing, other violations included an unplugged shotgun and hunting without a license. Evidence was seized and citations were issued to three different hunters in conjunction with the violations.
On the season opener for running hounds in the Red Oak Bear Management Unit (BMU) in Oscoda County, CO James Garrett was sitting on an early bear bait he had found established prior to August 15, which is the legal date to begin baiting for bear in the Red Oak BMU. At first light, CO Garrett heard a vehicle with hounds approaching his location. He observed a hunter tend the bait station and then contacted her. CO Garrett issued a citation for tending/establishing a bear bait prior to the 31 days before season.
CO Josh Wright was patrolling opening day of bear season in Clare County when he came across a truck parked on state land. There were numerous empty beer cans and litter on the ground next to the truck. CO Wright followed a trail and was able to get within 40 yards of the hunter who was situated in a ladder stand. The hunter was not wearing the required hunter orange and was not aware of the CO’s presence. CO Wright backed out silently and decided to wait for the hunter to finish out the evening hunt. After a short wait, CO Wright heard the hunter shoot twice. The man was surprised when CO Wright walked in to offer his assistance with tagging and dragging the nice boar bear back to his truck. After providing the assistance, CO Wright addressed the violations and determined the hunter knew he was supposed to be wearing hunter orange. In addition, the hunter admitted to leaving the beer cans and litter during the process of keeping the bait pile stocked up prior to the hunt. A citation was issued for not wearing hunter orange and a warning was provided for the litter, which was cleaned up by the hunter.
CO Matthew Neterer responded to a Report All Poaching complaint near Sebewaing where a group of youth waterfowl hunters were suspected of taking an over-limit of mallard ducks. Upon arrival, CO Neterer discovered that two of the youth hunters were in possession of 12 mallards and did not have federal migratory bird stamps. The hunters received citations for possessing over-limits of mallards and given verbal warnings for not having their federal stamps.
CO Chad Foerster received a complaint from the Report All Poaching hotline about an individual possibly shooting deer and leaving them for dead without retrieving them under a Deer Damage Permit. CO Foerster was able to determine that the suspect did not have permits for the County/Township in question. COs Foerster and Jason Smith obtained a confession from the suspect about shooting numerous deer over the past several months without a permit and without retrieving them. Additionally, the suspect showed the COs the location of each deer which were now reduced to bones. A numerous count warrant is being sought on the suspect for illegally shooting the deer out of season along with reimbursement and hunting privileges revoked.
COs Mike Haas and Josh Russell were conducting an ORV patrol in central Montcalm County responding to complaints of ORVs tearing up numerous intersections on the rural county roads. The COs located intersections with fresh "doughnut" marks, thrown gravel, and ruts. After following the ORV tracks the COs caught up to individuals operating 4-wheelers down the middle of the roadway. Numerous violations were addressed including; operating without crash helmets, operating over 25 mph, operating on the roadway, causing erosive conditions, driving with a suspended license, and probation violations. Citations were issued.
CO Mike Haas received a complaint of a trespasser camping on private property near the Chippewa River. CO Haas was unsure how the man entered the posted property, but eventually located the suspect's vehicle parked in a driveway of an empty house that was listed for sale. CO Haas then walked through the house’s yard and neighboring private property and located the man lying in a tent along the river. The man admitted that he did not know whose house he parked at and didn't know whose property he was camping on. A citation for recreational trespassing was issued and the man was directed to pack his belongings and exit the private property.
COs Dan Robinson and Mike Haas were working a waterfowl complaint in northern Montcalm county when they noticed two subjects in a field glassing and pointing a firearm in the direction of an open field. The COs watched the couple for a few minutes and then approached the pair who stated they had permission from the farmer, and they were planning to harvest a deer. The female subject was not in possession of a firearm at the time and did not have on a hunter orange garment. The male subject was holding a rifle and when asked if he had a hunting license, he patted his pockets and said he didn’t have it on him. A check on both subjects’ license history showed that neither subject had purchased an antlerless deer tag prior to going out. A citation was issued to the male subject for being afield with a firearm during season without a license. A warning was given for having a loaded firearm in/upon a motor vehicle and the hunter orange was addressed.
CO Kyle McQueer was patrolling Mottville Dam in St. Joseph County when he was observing anglers fishing from the pier. When contact was made with the anglers, CO McQueer observed a boat fishing near the dam, well past six clearly visible buoys stating no vessel beyond this point. While CO McQueer was checking all the anglers for fishing licenses, the boat noticed CO McQueer and was quickly heading back to the boat launch on the other side of the St. Joseph River. CO McQueer quickly checked the rest of the anglers and made his way to the opposite side of the river to catch the boat before it left. As CO McQueer got to the boat launch, the boat was just pulling up to the dock. CO McQueer contacted both individuals on the boat. After checking the vessel for safety equipment and fishing licenses, the individual who was operating the boat within the restricted area was also fishing without a license. A citation was given to the operator of the boat for operating a vessel within a restricted area and for fishing without a license.
While travelling on US 131 in Kent County, CO Justin Ulberg had a vehicle pass him at a high rate of speed. CO Ulberg determined the vehicle was traveling at approximately 100 mph and swerving in and out of traffic. CO Ulberg conducted a traffic stop and issued the driver a citation for the violation. During the contact, CO Ulberg discovered that the subject also had an outstanding warrant for his arrest. The subject was taken into custody and lodged at the county jail.
While checking small game hunters in Kent County, CO Justin Ulberg located a subject walking around in a section of state land carrying a firearm but did not have on any hunter orange. CO Ulberg contacted the subject who advised that he and a friend were out squirrel hunting but had gotten turned around and separated on the section of state land. Eventually the other hunter, who also was not wearing hunter orange, came out of the woods. A citation was issued for the violation and the hunters were educated on the importance of wearing hunter orange for safety.
CO Justin Ulberg was checking anglers at a launch in Ottawa County as they came off the water. Upon contacting two anglers, CO Ulberg discovered that they were 13 bluegills over their daily limit. Further investigation revealed that one of the anglers did not have a 2019 fishing license. The angler was issued a citation for the violations and the over limit of fish were seized.
CO Casey Varriale and CO Jackie Miskovich were on patrol on the Montague Pier in Muskegon County where they witnessed two people on a jet ski creating a wake too close to shore. While watching the individuals, it was noted that neither were wearing life preservers, there was no spotter for the individual being towed, and they were operating the jet ski after sunset. The COs contacted the suspects and cited them for the violations.
COs in the Grand Haven area have been addressing the large amounts of panfish being caught in the Grand River bayous. Recent patrols have resulted in subjects being cited for taking more than their daily limit. CO BJ Goulette approached one of these anglers returning to his vehicle and the subject was vague in his responses about how many fish he had caught or how the fishing was. When CO Goulette went to retrieve a bucket from his truck to count the subject’s fish, the officer noticed the subject quickly bending over and throwing fish under his car and then standing up like he hadn’t done anything. CO Goulette continued as if nothing had happened and proceeded to count through the subject’s bluegills and when he reached 25 fish there were still some left in the bucket. The subject made a remark about how he must have miscounted by a couple and that is when CO Goulette told him to grab the fish from under his vehicle. The subject was cited for having several fish over his limit and was advised that it is hard to sell “an honest mistake” when you try to purposely hide fish.
CO Carter Woodwyk conducted an inspection at a commercial meat processor in Allegan County over the weekend of the Liberty deer hunt. The first deer the CO checked had a kill tag on it that was purchased the morning of the opener for the Liberty Hunt, but it was validated for the following day. The CO conducted a follow-up interview with the youth hunter’s father who eventually confessed to his son not having a valid deer license when the deer was harvested. A report will be submitted to the Allegan County prosecutor for charges.
CO Richard Cardenas responded to a 911 call regarding a suicidal subject with a knife. Upon arrival he teamed up with a Barry County deputy and entered the respective residence. Upon learning that the subject had barricaded himself in the bathroom, the officers attempted to communicate through the bathroom door and convince the desperate subject not to hurt himself. At that time, the officers heard a gurgle and a painful growl that indicated the subject was possibly hurting himself. The officers kicked in the door to save the man’s life and found that he tried to cut his throat. Bloody and still holding the knife the officers deployed a TASER which had the desired impact and the man dropped the knife. Now disarmed, the subject was taken into protective custody where he was transported to the hospital for the proper medical and mental health care.
CO Andrew Monnich was checking anglers at Tecumseh Mill Pond when he observed a fisherman put his rod down and start walking to the parking lot rather quickly. CO Monnich headed toward the fisherman who noticed the CO approaching and started running. The fisherman jumped a fence and headed toward the river. After a quick foot chase, CO Monnich was able to detain the individual who stated he only ran because he had no fishing license. A file check through dispatch revealed eight warrants for the individual’s arrest. The fisherman was issued a citation for fishing without a license and lodged in the Lenawee County Jail on the warrants.
COs Andrew Monnich and Eric Smither observed a vehicle on the highway that had trouble maintaining the driving lane. The COs followed the car for just over a mile and it continued to drive over the fog line. A traffic stop was conducted and during the stop, CO Monnich could smell intoxicants on the driver. Sobrieties were conducted on the driver and a Preliminary Breath Test (PBT) resulted in a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) almost twice the legal limit. The operator was placed under arrest for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and lodged in the Lenawee County Jail.
COs Shane Webster, Andrew Monnich, and Eric Smither worked with the Lenawee County drug team on a flight. During the flight the COs were able to mark several baiting locations through Lenawee and Jackson Counties. They also assisted in pulling several illegal marijuana growing operations. Tickets were written for improperly securing/possessing marijuana plants and baiting deer in a closed county.
CO Todd Thorn and Sgt. Richard Nickols were on a foot patrol along the Red Cedar River in East Lansing when they observed a man, who appeared to be intoxicated, get into a small motorized boat and begin to operate down the river toward Lansing. CO Thorn and Sgt. Nickols contacted the man, who failed sobriety tests, and blew a .084 on the PBT. An arrest was made.
CO Todd Thorn was contacted by a Department of Natural Resources (DNR) wildlife employee, stating that he saw a naked man lying in a parking lot in the Dansville State Game area. CO Thorn responded and found the man. After CO Thorn secured the scene, EMS arrived to check the man. CO Thorn investigated further and found that the man was in possession of methamphetamine which he had recently used. The man was lodged at the Ingham County jail on multiple charges.
While assisting with security on Lake Lansing for a fundraising paddle sport race, CO Todd Thorn observed a group of young men operating a motorboat and pulling a tube in the center of the lake. CO Thorn saw that one of the juvenile males appeared to be only wearing a personal flotation device (PFD), and another of the males was acting inappropriately with him. The boat then took off, and after a short distance, CO Thorn was able to confirm that the male was not wearing anything but the PFD. CO Thorn contacted the juvenile while he was floating in the water. A towel was found for him and then he was issued a ticket and the whole group was educated on proper behavior in public.
CO Shannon Kritz was on patrol when she came across a child who was standing in middle of the road without shoes or a shirt on. The child was looking at vehicles as they passed him, and he seemed lost and confused. CO Kritz pulled over and got the child out of the road. The child was nonverbal, but it was clear that he was lost and was looking for somebody familiar. CO Kritz walked the neighborhood with the boy knocking on doors trying to locate the boy’s house or find somebody that recognized him. CO Kritz was approaching a house when the mother came out yelling for him. The mother explained that she had just realized he wasn’t in the house. She was very thankful and relieved that her child made it home safely.
CO Katie Stawara was investigating social media posts when she came across one indicating a youth hunter had shot two deer on opening day of the Liberty Hunt. An interview was conducted and a confession obtained. The youth shot a doe early Saturday morning. She purchased a Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) tag for it after the fact so she could continue hunting using her single deer tag. Later that evening, she shot a 7-point. Further investigation provided the youth did not have hunter safety for the junior deer tags she purchased. It was also found both deer had been shot while on the neighbor’s property. The deer were seized, and a warrant is being sought for the violations.
CO Katie Stawara was patrolling Oak Grove State Game area during the early antlerless deer season when she observed a truck parked near a cornfield. She ran the retail sales history for the registered owner, revealing a public antlerless deer tag had been purchased the evening prior. Suspected to be deer hunting on public land, CO Stawara sat on the vehicle and heard a single shotgun shot. Shortly after, the suspect was observed dragging an antlerless deer to his truck with a 12-gauge shotgun in hand. The suspect was wearing hunter orange and had properly validated his tag. He was found not to have taken hunter safety. The deer was seized, and a warrant is being sought for take deer in closed area.
Sgt. Rich Nickols was patrolling back roads in Clinton County when he discovered a pickup truck parked on a gravel roadway. Sgt. Nickols pulled alongside the vehicle and found the driver sleeping with the engine running. After waking the driver and ruling out a medical emergency, sobriety evaluations were conducted. The subject was arrested and lodged at the Clinton County Jail with a .21 BAC.
COs Kris Kiel and Brad Silorey were patrolling around large gravel pits in Macomb County when they located two deer hunters coming out of the woods during the early antlerless deer season. Both subjects failed to wear hunter orange. Upon contact, one subject failed to purchase a hunting license and the other only had a combo deer license, which is not valid during the antlerless only firearm deer season. When the officers asked if they had taken hunter safety, both subjects replied yes. When checking records, it was found neither subject had taken a hunter safety course. Citations were written for hunting deer without a license and failing to wear hunter orange.
CO Raymond Gardner responded to a complaint about two hunters hunting for deer on state land during the early antlerless season in Lapeer County. CO Gardner contacted the hunters who said they were hunting for deer. CO Gardner explained to them that early antlerless season only applies to private lands. A citation was issued to both hunters for violation of the hunting regulation.
COs Jaime Salisbury and Raymond Gardner were patrolling the Lapeer State Game Area for waterfowl hunters. While patrolling, the COs observed several individuals shooting at geese flying high above them. The COs observed for a short time and after the geese were no longer flying over, the COs contacted the hunters in the field. Upon contact the COs checked hunting licenses and shotguns for plugs. While talking with the hunters, CO Salisbury noticed a gun case on the ground that appeared to have something inside. CO Salisbury asked about the case and one of the hunters said that was his extra gun that he used to shoot after his other gun was empty. During the contact it was also found that two of the hunters were in possession of toxic shot. Citations were issued for possession of toxic shot and using/possessing more than one firearm in the field while waterfowl hunting.
While on the way home from Survival Tactics (ST) training, CO Jaime Salisbury was passed by a motorcycle at a high rate of speed. After catching up to the motorcycle, CO Salisbury conducted a traffic stop. The driver was unable to provide identification or registration. CO Salisbury issued a citation for not having a driver’s license on them and issued warnings for speeding and no proof of registration.
CO Tom Peterson responded to a domestic dispute at a gas station in Oakland County. CO Peterson was first on scene. The CO identified the parties involved, gained information that one of the individuals involved was suffering from bipolar disorder and had been off his medication for at least seven days. The individual was having an episode and wanted to be admitted to the hospital for psychiatric treatment. The individual was cleared and transported to a nearby hospital for treatment.
CO Tom Peterson was the first officer on scene to a truck fire that endangered a nearby barn and other heavy-duty equipment in Oakland County. The CO determined no one was in the vehicle or the nearby structures. CO Peterson secured the scene until the fire department arrived to extinguish the fire.
CO Luke Robare was patrolling home from his shift on Belle Isle when he observed a vehicle in front of him exhibiting signs that the driver might be intoxicated, swerving and driving over the center line and back again. CO Robare followed the vehicle for several miles and waited for the vehicle to commit a moving violation. CO Robare initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle and when the driver rolled down the window, CO Robare could smell the odor of intoxicants coming from the vehicle. CO Robare administered Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs) and a PBT on the driver; the results verified that the driver was intoxicated. CO Robare arrested the individual and lodged him at the Genesee County Jail for Operating Under the Influence of Liquor (OUIL) motor vehicle.
CO Justin Muehlhauser investigated an ongoing complaint regarding waterfowl hunting on a local pond. The neighbors do not like hearing the gunshots, so there have been several complaints over the past few years. This year, the hunters called to report hunter harassment. A woman stopped on the side of the road and started yelling and calling the hunters murderers. She then placed notes on each of their vehicles calling them the same. COs Luke Robare and Muehlhauser contacted the woman who did not dispute the allegations. She said that the gun shots were scaring her horses and she was trying to get them to stop. The hunters wish to pursue charges for hunter harassment and CO Muehlhauser will be submitting a report to the prosecutor’s office.
CO Justin Muehlhauser planned and coordinated the Hunter Safety area field day. The event was held at the Linden Sportsman Club. The club provided firearms and ammunition for each student to shoot on the range. There were approximately 20 students in attendance. COs from the area presented a variety of topics to the students. Every student was presented with their Hunter Education certification.
CO Troy Ludwig was patrolling Belle Isle when he observed a vehicle parked in a traffic lane. The CO was about to contact the driver and ask them to park in a designated spot when a red solo cup was thrown from the driver’s side window. The CO conducted a traffic stop and it was discovered that the driver was suspended and had been in an argument with the passenger who was intoxicated. The cup had then been thrown out the window in anger during the argument. The driver was issued a citation for no operator’s license on person and littering.
CO Ben Shively was working Belle Isle and focused on speed enforcement. CO Shively stopped three vehicles for excessive speed that were traveling 50, 54, and 79 in the posted 25 mph zone. All three drivers were issued speeding citations and two drivers were also issued no operator’s license citations. CO Shively encountered 17 warrants on the occupants of the vehicles stopped.
Cpl. Kevin Postma and Sault Tribe Officer Menard patrolled Whitefish Bay on Lake Superior. Three different groups of tribal commercial fishermen were inspected on the water with reports of fishing being mediocre. Roughly 16 nets were also checked for compliance.
Cpl. Kevin Postma performed a dock side inspection of tribal commercial fishermen in the Brimley area reporting a decent day catch of 1,100 lbs. of whitefish.
Cpl. Sean Kehoe assisted Area 4-1 with a salmon patrol on the Betsie River. During the assist, Cpl. Kehoe observed a fisherman foul hook a fish, land it, and put it on a stringer. When the subject was contacted, he told Cpl. Kehoe he often wondered where we were and Cpl. Kehoe told him, “I am right here.” The fisherman said, “Yeah, I see that.” The subject was cooperative and mad at himself for letting temptation take over.
Cpls. Nick Torsky and Kevin Postma patrolled the St. Martin’s Bay area for salmon nets. On the water, contact with two groups of commercial fishermen was made and 18 gill nets were checked and found to be in compliance.
Cpl. Troy VanGelderen attended the annual end of summer dinner at the Pentwater Yacht Club where he discussed his occupation and answered questions.
Cpl. Troy VanGelderen assisted District 4 on Hardy Pond with the “Hot Boat Hardy Gras” event. Cpl. VanGelderen operated his Sea Ark Commander through narrow passages of tied up boats in the cove of the festival patrolling for illegal activity. The team on Cpl. VanGelderen’s vessel wrote several marine safety tickets and chased down and arrested one subject for Boating Under the Influence on a personal watercraft.
CO Craig Neal and Cpl. Nick Atkin assisted the Arenac County Sheriff’s Department with the apprehension of a bank robbery suspect. The subject was taken into custody without incident.
Cpls. Nick Torsky, Kevin Postma, Jon Busken, Brett DeLonge, Craig Milkowski, Sean Kehoe, Nick Atkin, along with Lt. Mike Feagan, took part in the 62nd annual Mackinac Bridge Walk security detail, providing on-water security and enforcing the temporary closure of recreational boating activity around the bridge.