Enforcement

Violet Man Sentenced for Oyster Violations

Release Date: 05/08/2014

A Violet man pleaded guilt today, May 8, in the 34th Judicial District of St. Bernard Parish for oyster violations.

Judge Jean Nunez Juneau accepted the guilty plea from Oliver F. Rudesell Jr., 32, and sentenced him to pay a $650 fine plus court costs and a 60-day jail term that was suspended.

Rudesell Jr. also must not be on a vessel harvesting oysters, possessing oysters or gear to take oysters for two years unless that vessel is equipped with a vessel monitoring system that is monitored by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents.  He was also placed on two years probation with six months being active in which he cannot be caught committing any Class 3 or higher wildlife offenses.

Rudesell Jr. pled guilty to two counts of taking oysters from unleased state water bottoms, and pled no contest to failing to have a commercial license in possession, taking commercial fish without a gear license and taking commercial fish without a vessel license.

The sentence is a result of numerous occasions where Rudesell Jr. was caught by LDWF Enforcement Division Agents for taking oysters from unleased state grounds and license violations in St. Bernard Parish.

The case was prosecuted by Darren Roy for the St. Bernard Parish District Attorney’s Office.

Agents participating in the case were Capt. Steven McManus, Sgts. Adam Young, Mike Garrity and Villere Reggio and Senior Agent Bret Nabors.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF to Hold Summer Day Camps in Baton Rouge

Release Date: 05/06/2014

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is sponsoring two summer day camps for children 12 to 16 years old at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge this summer.

The camps will be held from June 23-27 and again from July 21-25.  Each camp is completely free of charge and will allow participants to receive their official boater and hunter education certifications.

LDWF will also offer a fish identification class, fishing and canoeing in the ponds at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, skeet shooting, and other outdoor related classes and activities.  LDWF Environmental Education staff will also assist with the camps and provide workshops on non-consumptive educational programs.

"These camps provide a lot of time for learning classroom material that the children then get a chance to utilize with hands on activities immediately outside later that same day,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham.  “For a week, parents have the chance to let their kids become sportsmen and women in a safe, supervised environment.”

LDWF and Podnuh’s Bar-B-Q of Baton Rouge is providing a daily lunch free of charge for the five-day summer camps.   Cabela's in Gonzales also donated rod and reel combos for each child that they can take home at the end of the camp.  The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation and the Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana are each providing two lifetime hunting and fishing combo licenses that will be given to four of the participants.

The camps are open to 25 children per camp who have not completed a boater or hunter education certificate.

To register for the camps, parents must fill out the online application by May 27.  Parents must fill out a separate application for each child they wish to register and may only register their child for one of the camps.  The online registration form is located at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/summerdaycamp.

Since the main goal of these camps is to introduce and teach kids about the outdoors, LDWF will choose the 25 kids for each camp based on the child’s lack of experience with fishing, boating and hunting.  LDWF will notify parents by either email or phone if their child has been selected for the camps.

Parents with children that have been selected for either camp, must drop off their child at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center located at 4142 North Flannery Rd., Baton Rouge, LA 70814 between 7 and 8 a.m., and then pick their child up between 4 and 5 p.m. each day.  Attendance every day of the week is mandatory in order to receive the boating and hunting education certifications.

The boating education course is mandatory for anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 and proof of completion of the course is necessary to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.  The course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements.  The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more.  Completion of the course will result in the student being issued a vessel operators certification card.

The hunter education course is mandatory for anyone born on or after Sept. 1, 1969, who plans on purchasing a hunting license.  The hunter education curriculum includes sections on ethics and responsibility, wildlife management, firearms and ammunition, safety in the field, wildlife identification and wildlife conservation.  The major objectives of the hunter education programs are to reduce the number of hunting accidents, improve the image of hunting through ethical and responsible conduct and promote the shooting sports.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at aeinck@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2465.

Body of Kayaker Found in Lake Charles Identified

Release Date: 05/06/2014

Search crews found the body of a deceased Texas man in Lake Charles on May 3 in Calcasieu Parish.

Search crews from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division and Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office (CPSO) found the body of Zachary Collins, 24, of Silsbee, Texas around 9:30 p.m. on May 3.

LDWF agents and CPSO deputies received a call around 6 p.m. on May 3 about an overturned kayak floating off of the Interstate 10 beach on Lake Charles.  The search crews utilized side sonar technology to search the water and locate Collins who was found without a personal flotation device.

Search crews learned that Collins launched his kayak from the beach around 5:30 p.m.

LDWF is the lead investigating agency for this boating incident.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

L.D.W.F. Enforcement Division Academy to Enroll 30 Cadets for Training this Summer

Release Date: 05/05/2014

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) Law Enforcement Division will begin training up to 30 cadets in July to bolster the ranks of agents in the field.

The cadets will train at the department’s training facility housed within the Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge. Successful completion of six months of intensive physical and academic training is required to graduate.

“An LDWF enforcement agent has a tremendous responsibility, protecting Louisiana’s rich natural resources, and those who enjoy those resources, whether in the field or on the water,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. “And those responsibilities extend to response efforts during natural disasters when citizens need assistance in impacted areas.”

At the academy, cadets train to enforce the state's recreational boating laws, the state and federal wildlife and fisheries laws, and general law enforcement work on the state's many wildlife management areas.  The academy also covers general law enforcement training required for all state law enforcement officers.

Agents are additionally trained for search and rescue and serve as the lead responders in search and rescue coordination under the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.

This class of graduating agents will fill field office vacancies around the state.  Each cadet is assigned to a parish and must reside in that parish upon completion of the academy.

Interested applicants can apply online through the Department of Civil Service website and must complete the LEAPS test to qualify for consideration. Please visit the civil service website at http://www.civilservice.louisiana.gov/ for “Wildlife Enforcement Cadet” and LEAPS testing application information.

For more information including a video about becoming an LDWF agent, please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/enforcement/becoming-agent.

The LDWF Enforcement Division has openings in the following parishes: Desoto, Claiborne, Red River, Madison, Jackson, Lincoln, Winn, two for Sabine, LaSalle, Iberville, Iberia, Allen, Beauregard, Jefferson Davis, two for Cameron, two for Vermilion, Jefferson, West Feliciana, St. Charles, Orleans, two for St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Natchitoches, Pointe Coupee, St. John and Ascension.

LDWF is charged with managing, conserving, and promoting wise utilization of Louisiana's renewable fish and wildlife resources and their supporting habitats through replenishment, protection, enhancement, research, development, and education for the social and economic benefit of current and future generations; to provide opportunities for knowledge of and use and enjoyment of these resources; and to promote a safe and healthy environment for the users of the resources.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Boating Education Lagniappe Day Slated for May 10

Release Date: 04/23/2014

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will be hosting the fourth annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on May 10 at eight different locations across the state.

During Boating Education Lagniappe Day, LDWF will provide instructors for the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, NASBLA boating education certification, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

LDWF urges the public to register quickly as most places have limited spaces available and registration is on a first come first serve basis.

Anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 must complete a NASBLA approved boating education course and carry proof of completion to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.

The course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements.  The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more.  Completion of the course will result in the student being issued a vessel operators certification card.

Below is the list of class locations and the registration contact information, which can also be found at www.wlf.louisiana/lagniappeday:

Bossier Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
2801 Beene Blvd.
Bossier City, La 71111
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 318-371-3049.
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors, Bayou Outdoor Supercenter of Bossier City, H&W Marine of Bossier City and O’Reilly Auto Parts.

Ouachita Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
111 Constitutional Dr.
West Monroe, La 71292
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
To register please call 318-343-2417.
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors, Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association and Pizza Hut.

Rapides Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
3205 S MacArthur Dr.
Alexandria, La 71301
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
To register please call 318-487-5634.
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors and the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

St. Landry Parish
St. Landry Lumber
207 N Railroad Ave.
Opelousas, La 70570
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 337-948-0257.
Sponsors include Raising Canes of Opelousas, Acadiana Outfitters of Iberia, Walmart of Eunice and St. Landry Lumber of Opelousas.

Calcasieu Parish
Lake Charles Civic Center
900 Lakeshore Dr.
Lake Charles, La 70601
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
To register please call 337-591-2580
Sponsors include the Calcasieu Chapter Whitetails Unlimited.

Lafourche Parish
Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office Rifle Range
1156 Hwy. 90
Raceland, La 70394
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 985-447-0821.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association and Kief's Hardware Inc. of Cutoff.

Ascension Parish
Cabelas
2200 W Cabela's Pkwy
Gonzales, LA 70737
9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
To register please call 225-765-2999.
Sponsors include Cabela’s and Louisiana Waterway Safety Inc.

St. Tammany Parish
Madisonville Branch of St. Tammany Parish Public Library
1123 Main St.
Madisonville, LA 70447
9:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Please call 504-284-2023 to register.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Dubach Man Cited for Turkey Hunting Violations in Union Parish

Release Date: 04/22/2014

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited a Dubach man for alleged turkey hunting and trespassing charges on April 19 in Union Parish.

Agents cited Anthony J. Lewis, 40, of Dubach, for intentional concealment of wildlife evidence, failing to comply with turkey tagging requirements, hunting turkeys with no basic hunting and big licenses and turkey stamp, criminal trespassing and operating an All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) on a public road.

Agents received a complaint from an anonymous hunter about Lewis turkey hunting on private property without permission near Dubach.  When agents arrived to the location, Lewis was no longer hunting in the area.  Agents then drove to Lewis’ residence and found him driving down a public road on an ATV.  When Lewis saw the agents he turned the opposite direction to avoid detection.

After a brief pursuit, agents were able to make contact with Lewis to which he admitted to dumping a harvested turkey from earlier in the day in a field during the pursuit.  Agents were able to locate the harvested turkey and issue Lewis his citations.

Intentional concealment of wildlife evidence brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Failing to comply with turkey tagging requirements and hunting without a big game license each carry up a $100 to $350 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Hunting turkey without a turkey stamp and basic hunting license each bring up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.  Criminal trespassing carries a $100 to $500 fine and up to 30 days in jail.  Operating an ATV on a public road brings up to a $175 fine and up to 30 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Scott Watson and Senior Agent David Nelson.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF Agents Arrest Bunkie Man for Resisting Arrest

Release Date: 04/21/2014

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested a Bunkie man for alleged flight from an officer and resisting arrest on April 16 2014 in Avoyelles Parish.

Agents arrested Shannon Stevenson, 30, and booked him into the Avoyelles Parish Prison for resisting an officer by flight and resisting arrest.

Agents attempted a license check of Stevenson who was fishing over 140 crawfish traps from the bank on Bayou Rouge near Bunkie.  Stevenson then tried to elude the agents by attempting to swim across the bayou.  Agents were able to quickly apprehend Stevenson from the water.

Agents also charged Stevenson with taking commercial fish without a commercial license and a commercial gear license and trespassing.

Taking commercial fish without a commercial license and gear license each brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail for each offense.  Resisting an officer by flight carries up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.  Resisting arrest brings a $25 to $100 fine and 30 days to six months of jail.  Trespassing carries a $100 to $500 fine and up to 30 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Travis Burnett, Senior Agent Douglas Anderson, Senior Agent Byron Cammack and Senior Agent Jay Callegari.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Two Subjects Cited for Trawling In Closed Season in Terrebonne Parish

Release Date: 04/21/2014

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited two Louisiana men for allegedly trawling for shrimp during a closed season on April 18 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents were on patrol in Caillou Bay near Bayou De West in inside state waters when they observed a commercial shrimping vessel actively trawling for shrimp.  Agents boarded the vessel and found Justin Griffin, 28, of Theriot, and Spencer Callahan, 21, of Dulac, on board.

Agents seized 177 pounds of shrimp and the vessels two trawls.

Taking shrimp in a closed season brings a $400 to $900 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Senior Agent Dean Aucoin and Senior Agent Thomas Wolf.
For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Plaquemines Parish Man Sentenced For Oyster Violations and Public Intimidation of Law Enforcement Agent

Release Date: 04/16/2014

A Port Sulphur man pleaded guilty on April 15 to his sixth offense of taking oysters in a polluted area and felony public intimidation of a Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Agent.

Judge Michael C. Clement of the 25th Judicial District in Plaquemines Parish accepted the guilty plea from Jonathan K. Ragas, 51, and sentenced him to pay a $2,500 fine plus court costs, five years in parish prison suspended and probation for six years.

Judge Clement also revoked all of Ragas’ commercial and recreational licenses for two years.  Ragas was also ordered to not be on a vessel that possesses oysters or any gear that takes oysters and he cannot act as deckhand on any commercial fishing vessel for those two years.  After the two-year revocation, he cannot be on a vessel with oysters or gear to take oysters, or work on a vessel with oysters for a period of three years unless the vessel is equipped with a vessel monitoring system that is monitored by LDWF.

The sentence stems from an incident when an LDWF agent and Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office (PPSO) deputies caught Ragas harvesting polluted oysters for the sixth time in an area closed to the harvest of oysters by the Department of Health and Hospitals on March 20, 2013.

After the stop occurred, Ragas resisted and threatened the LDWF Agent with a hatchet that was on board.

Edward McGowan prosecuted the case for District Attorney Charles Ballay’s office.

LDWF Sgt. Adam Young and PPSO Marine Division deputies assisted in the stop.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Monterey Man Pleads Guilty for Illegally Killing a Louisiana Black Bear

Release Date: 04/04/2014

A Monterey man pleaded guilty and was sentenced on April 3 in Concordia Parish for illegally killing a Louisiana Black Bear.

Seventh Judicial District of Louisiana Judge Kathy Johnson took Duell Moreland's, 24, guilty plea and sentenced him to a $10,000 civil restitution fee for replacement value of the black bear, a $950 fine, $254 in court fees, two years of probation, 120 days in Concordia Parish Jail with 60 days suspended and 60 days mandatory, suspended his hunting license for five years and he cannot possess a firearm or bow for five years.

Moreland turned himself into the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office on Nov. 18, 2013, for the illegal killing of a Louisiana Black Bear.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents got an arrest warrant for Moreland on Nov. 14, 2013.  Agents began the investigation after receiving a mortality signal from a radio collared black bear that was a part of LDWF’s Black Bear Program.  A mortality signal is sent after a certain amount of inactivity.

Upon arriving to the scene of the radio collar off of Pete Davis Road in Wildsville in Concordia Parish, agents found the collar and a burn pile next to the collar containing bear parts.  Agents also noticed an abandoned broke down pickup truck on the property that they later found belonged to Moreland.

Agents interviewed the two leaseholders of the property whom both disclosed that Moreland was the person responsible for the illegal killing of the black bear.  Agents seized a rifle and crossbow from Moreland’s truck and a knife from the scene.

Agents assisting in the case were Senior Agent Joey Merrill and US Fish and Wildlife Agents Mark Cupit and John Tarver.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

 

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