Enforcement

Single Boating Incident Leads to Fatality in Iberville Parish

Release Date: 05/12/2016

Search and rescue crews from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and the Iberville Parish Sheriff’s Office (IPSO) recovered the body of a Carencro man today, May 12, in Iberville Parish.

The search crews located the missing deceased body of Justin Viator, 31, around 2:30 p.m. from the Whiskey Bay area.

The search and rescue crews responded to a single boating incident around 1 p.m.  Justin Viator was a passenger in a 15 foot aluminum boat being operated by his father.  The vessel struck an Interstate 10 piling between the Ramah and Whiskey Bay Exits sending both men into the water.

The father was picked up shortly after the incident by a passing boater and was transported to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Lafayette.  His injuries are not suspected to be life threatening at this time.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating crash incident.  Neither men was wearing a personal flotation device.  LDWF does not suspect alcohol as a contributing factor at this time.

The body of Justin Viator was turned over to the Iberville Parish Coroner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

Man Cited For Crab Trap Theft in Plaquemines Parish

Release Date: 05/12/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents cited a Slidell man for alleged crab trap theft in Plaquemines Parish on May 11.

Agents cited Broward Barwick, 26, of Slidell, for removing the contents of crab traps that were not owned by him, failing to mark crab traps and theft of crab traps.

Agents set up surveillance on a line of crab traps near Pointe Fienne in Plaquemines Parish and watched Barwick run the line of crab traps and emptied the contents onto his vessel.  The agents inspected this line of traps and found that several were untagged or tagged by different commercial fishermen.

The penalty for removing contents of crab traps, using crab traps without required markings and theft of crab traps carries a up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for each offense.

Agents seized multiple crab traps that will be returned to their owners and returned five boxes of crabs to the water.

Agents participating in the case are Senior Agent Gary Pierce and Agent Kyle Haydel.

Agents Arrest Six People for DWI on the Water in Livingston Parish

Release Date: 05/12/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents arrested six boaters for operating a vessel while intoxicated (DWI) on the water in Livingston Parish from May 6 to 8.

The arrests took place on the Maurepas Basin waterway system which consists mainly of the Blind, Amite and Tickfaw rivers.

Agents arrested David Melendez, 48, of Gonzales; Glynn Painter, 63, from French Settlement; Jamie Fuentes, 43, from Denham Springs; Logan Collins, 25, from Winnfield; Justin Pfister, 20, from Destrehan; and Gary Mooney, 33, from Baton Rouge.

A DWI on the water carries the same penalites as a DWI on the road and brings a $300 to $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail for the first offense.  A DWI on the water also includes loss of driving and boating privileges.

The LDWF Enforcement Division is charged with the public's safety of the states waterways and has a zero tolerance for vessel operators operating their vessel while impaired.  As always agents will be out in force on the various waterways throughout the state enforcing boating safety regulations this spring and summer.

LDWF highly recommends a designated operator of a vessel if alcohol will be consumed while boating.

Agents participating in these DWI arrests are Sgt. Randy Lanoux, Sgt. Terry Hicks, Lt. Louis Burnett, Sgt. Todd Lavliolette, Sgt. Carl Armstrong, Senior Agent Dale Wheat, Agent Hunter Pearson, Agent Josh Cooper and Agent Trey Coats.

Two Men Cited for Illegally Taken Alligator in St. Landry Parish

Release Date: 05/04/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited two men for alleged alligator hunting violations on the evening of May 2.

Agents cited Todd Rivoire Jr., 20, of Youngsville, and Colt Cahanin, 22, of Breaux Bridge, for taking an alligator during a closed season and intentional concealment of illegally taken wildlife.

Investigating an anonymous tip, agents suspected that Rivoire and Cahanin possessed an alligator taken near Henderson.  Agents were able to make contact with the two men at the residence of Rivoire’s father in Breaux Bridge where agents found a deceased 8-foot alligator hidden in the woods.

The open season for this area generally opens the first Wednesday of September and runs for 30 days.

Taking an alligator during a closed season brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Intentional concealment of illegally taken wildlife brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Senior Agent Allan Marbury and Sgt. Cliff Ortis.

Two Men Arrested for Shrimping Violations

Release Date: 04/29/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested two men for alleged shrimping violations on April 27 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents arrested Tracey L. Trahan, 37, of Houma, and Sterlin Billiot Jr., 22, of Dulac, for trawling during a closed shrimp season.  Lee was also cited for not having navigation lights.

Agents on patrol found the vessel with Trahan as the captain four miles inside state waters running without any navigation lights in Terrebonne Bay actively trawling for shrimp around 11:30 p.m.  After making contact with Trahan and Billiot Jr., agents found the men in possession of 663 pounds of shrimp.

Agents seized the shrimp and the two trawls.  The vessel was seized on a department seizure order.  The two men were also booked into the Terrebonne Parish Jail.

The shrimping season for state inside waters is scheduled to be set at the May Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission meeting.

Trawling for shrimp during a closed season brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Running a boat at night with no navigation lights carries a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud, Senior Agent Michael Williams and Senior Agent Thomas Wolf.

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

Two Men Arrested for Shrimping Violations

Release Date: 04/28/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested two men for alleged shrimping violations on April 27 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents arrested Tracey L. Trahan, 37, of Houma, and Sterlin Billiot Jr., 22, of Dulac, for trawling during a closed shrimp season.  Lee was also cited for not having navigation lights.

Agents on patrol found the vessel with Lee as the captain four miles inside state waters running without any navigation lights in Terrebonne Bay actively trawling for shrimp around 11:30 p.m.  After making contact with Lee and Billiot Jr., agents found the men in possession of 663 pounds of shrimp.

Agents seized the shrimp and the two trawls.  The vessel was seized on a department seizure order.  The two men were also booked into the Terrebonne Parish Jail.

The shrimping season for state inside waters is scheduled to be set at the May Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission meeting.

Trawling for shrimp during a closed season brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Running a boat at night with no navigation lights carries a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud, Senior Agent Michael Williams and Senior Agent Thomas Wolf.

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

Five Men Cited for Red Snapper Violations in Federal Waters

Release Date: 04/27/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited five men for alleged red snapper fishing violations on April 24.

Agents cited Carman Johnson, 44, of Mobile, Ala., Ryan Bergeron, 19, of Houma, Randy Landry, 51, of Houma, Jordan Musso, 30, of Broussard, and Robert Musso, 51, of Youngsville, for possessing red snapper in federal waters during a closed federal red snapper season.  Agents also cited Johnson for over the limit of red snapper.

LDWF agents working a Joint Enforcement Agreement patrol found the five men in three separate vessels at least 15 miles off the coast of Louisiana.  Agents found Johnson in possession of eight red snapper, Bergeron and Landry with three red snapper between them, and Jordan and Robert Mousso also with three red snapper total.

The federal red snapper season in federal waters opens on June 1 in the Gulf of Mexico.  During the season, each fishermen is allowed two red snapper 16 inches or longer per day.

Possessing red snapper in federal waters during a closed federal season and over the limit of red snapper each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail for each offense.  Johnson may also face up to $230 in civil restitution.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud and Sgt. Bryan Marie.

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

179 Boaters Certified During "Boating Education Lagniappe Day"

Release Date: 04/26/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) certified 179 boaters statewide after their sixth annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on April 23.

Boating Education Lagniappe Day was at nine locations across the state and consisted of the National Association of Safe Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

The NASBLA safe boating certification is mandatory for anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 who wants to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.

The NASBLA approved 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.  Each student received that completed the course was issued a vessel operators certification card.

To register for a future boating education class please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses and follow the links to register.

Below was the list of class locations for lagniappe day:

Bossier City
Academy Sports & Outdoors - Bossier City
2801 Beene Blvd.
Sponsor is Academy Sports & Outdoors of Bossier City

West Monroe
Academy Sports & Outdoors
111 Constitution Dr.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association (LWAA) and Academy Sports & Outdoors of West Monroe

Alexandria
Academy Sports & Outdoors
3205 South MacArthur Dr.
Sponsor is Academy Sports & Outdoors of Alexandria

Opelousas
St. Landry Lumber
207 North Railroad Ave.
Sponsors include Wal-Mart of Eunice, Raising Canes and LWAA

Deridder
Deridder First Baptist Church
2031 Hwy. 171
Sponsor is the Beauregard Parish Chapter of Whitetails Unlimited

Raceland
Lafourche Parish Sheriff Office Rifle Range
3451 Hwy. 182
Sponsors include the LWAA and Renovations Marine of Cut Off.

Amite
Tangipahoa Parish Library
204 NE Central Ave.
Sponsor is LWAA

Gonzales
Cabelas of Gonzales
2200 West Cabelas Parkway
Sponsors include Cabelas and Louisiana Waterway Safety

Madisonville
St. Tammany Parish Library Madisonville Branch
1123 Main Street
Sponsors include LWAA

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

LDWF Participating in Spring Aboard Safe Boating Program

Release Date: 04/22/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) are participating in the National Association of Safe Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) Spring Aboard program by hosting its sixth annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on April 23 at nine different locations across the state.

During the week of April 17-23, NASBLA encourages boaters to Spring Aboard by enrolling in a boating education course.  Developed by NASBLA, and produced under a grant administered by the U.S. Coast Guard, the annual Spring Aboard campaign is open to participation by all states, territories, boating education organizations, instructors, and course providers.

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

Registration for the Lagniappe Day classes are online and on a first come first serve basis.  To register please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses and follow the links to register for one of the nine April 23 classes.

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:

Bossier City
Academy Sports & Outdoors - Bossier City
2801 Beene Blvd.
Sponsor is Academy Sports & Outdoors of Bossier City

West Monroe
Academy Sports & Outdoors
111 Constitution Dr.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association (LWAA) and Academy Sports & Outdoors of West Monroe

Alexandria
Academy Sports & Outdoors
3205 South MacArthur Dr.
Sponsor is Academy Sports & Outdoors of Alexandria

Opelousas
St. Landry Lumber
207 North Railroad Ave.
Sponsors include Wal-Mart of Eunice, Raising Canes and LWAA

Deridder
Deridder First Baptist Church
2031 Hwy. 171
Sponsor is the Beauregard Parish Chapter of Whitetails Unlimited

Raceland
Lafourche Parish Sheriff Office Rifle Range
3451 Hwy. 182
Sponsors include the LWAA and Renovations Marine of Cut Off.

Amite
Tangipahoa Parish Library
204 NE Central Ave.
Sponsor is LWAA

Gonzales
Cabelas of Gonzales
2200 West Cabelas Parkway
Sponsors include Cabelas and Louisiana Waterway Safety

Madisonville
St. Tammany Parish Library Madisonville Branch
1123 Main Street
Sponsors include LWAA

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

Hessmer Man Sentenced for Downed Trees on Spring Bayou WMA

Release Date: 04/12/2016

A Hessmer man was sentenced on April 11 in 12th Judicial District Court in Avoyelles Parish for his part in the cutting down of trees on the Spring Bayou Wildlife Management Area (WMA).

Judge William Bennett sentenced Keith Savoy, 49, to serve two years in jail suspended, to pay $15,000 in civil restitution to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), $2,500 fine, $750 for the cost of prosecution and $400 in court costs.  Savoy was also given five years of probation during which time he will not be allowed on any Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and not allowed to possess recreational hunting or fishing licenses.

Savoy also leased land where he had a hunting camp on the Avoyelles Parish School Board Property, which is adjacent to Spring Bayou WMA.  Savoy has until July 1, 2016 to remove any property and then will not be allowed on school board property during the time of his probation.

Savoy was found guilty on March 2 for simple criminal damage to property with the value of damage being between $500 and $50,000.  Savoy cut over 100 trees in the northeast corner of Spring Bayou WMA to block navigable access to an area known as the “fields” where he regularly hunted.

Avoyelles District Attorney Charles Riddle and Assistant District Attorney Tony Salario prosecuted the case.

LDWF enforcement agents arrested Savoy on March 6, 2014 at his residence for criminal damage to state property after a four month investigation.

The trees Savoy cut down ranged from 10 inches to 30 inches in diameter and up to 50 foot tall including cypress, oak and willow trees.

Agents involved in the case are Lt. John Volentine, Sgts. Gabe Guidry, Chad Watts and Bear Fletcher, and Senior Agents Doug Anderson Jr., Jay Callegari, Heath Wood, Kurt Hatten, Dale Wheat, Kenny Robertson and John Hattaway.  Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy Matthew Smith and Detective Jeremiah Honea also assisted in the case.

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

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