Sample News

LDWF Names New Lieutenant Colonel

Release Date: 10/17/2017

Col. Sammy Martin and Lt. Col. Spencer Cole

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has promoted a Pineville native to a Lieutenant Colonel position within the Enforcement Division.

Spencer Cole was promoted from Major to Lieutenant Colonel on Oct. 10.  Lt. Col. Cole will oversee the administrative side of the enforcement division which includes budget, training, boating safety program, emergency services, statewide strike force, public information, quartermaster, communications and aviation sections among other duties.

“This is a very important position for the enforcement division and one that I know very well having served in it for the past three years,” said Col. Sammy Martin.  “I have the utmost respect and confidence in Lt. Col. Cole.  I feel that he will be able to transition very smoothly into his new duties as he has a very good working knowledge of all the different aspects of this position already.”

Lt. Col. Cole graduated from Buckeye High School in 1993 and then served six years in the U.S. National Guard.  Cole graduated from the LDWF Cadet Academy in 1999 and was assigned to patrol Claiborne Parish before transferring to Rapides Parish in 2001.

In 2008 Cole was assigned to the training academy in Baton Rouge and promoted to sergeant.  Then later in 2008 he was transferred to headquarters to oversee the newly developed Homeland and Maritime Security programs and all hazard responses where he developed the LDWF’s first ever five year maritime security plan and created LDWF’s maritime security response team (MSRT).

Cole was appointed the director of training and emergency services and promoted to lieutenant in 2010 where he helped LDWF develop the nation’s first accredited NASBLA BOAT program.

In 2012 he was promoted to captain with the added duties of MSRT and BOAT program coordinator.  Cole then took on the duties of captain of the Pineville Office in 2013 and was in charge of patrolling Sabine, Vernon, Natchitoches, Winn, Grant, Rapides, Lasalle, Catahoula, Concordia and Avoyelles parishes with over 20 agents under his command.

In 2014 he transferred back to headquarters where he was promoted to major and put over the bureau of operations section responsible for emergency services, training, communications, quartermaster, fleet, public information, budget and boating safety.

“This is a great honor to be promoted and I will continue to do my best to further the enforcement division’s mission into the future,” said Lt. Col. Cole.  “I feel my career experiences has made me very suitable for this new position.”

Sulphur Man Arrested for 87 Counts of Violating Charter Guide Regulations

Release Date: 10/17/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a Sulphur man for alleged violation of charter fishing guide violations on Oct. 12 in Cameron Parish.

Agents arrested Devon K. Fontenot, 22, for 87 counts of failing to comply with charter boat regulations and booked him into the Cameron Parish Jail.

Agents cited Fontenot on July 28 in Calcasieu Lake and Aug. 4 near the Cameron Jetties for failing to comply with charter boat regulations.  Agents found Fontenot on both of these days operating a charter guide fishing service without the required charter guide fishing license.

On Aug. 11 agents were able to contact Fontenot’s employer who furnished agents with logs of charter guide fishing trips Fontenot made in 2017.  In total, Fontenot made an additional 87 charter guide fishing trips for which he was never cited and without possessing a charter guide fishing license in 2017.

During the course of the investigation agents were able to determine that Fontenot did not possess a charter guide license until Aug. 16 of 2017.

Failing to comply with charter guide fishing regulations brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each count.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. David Sanford, Sgt. Stuart Guillory, Senior Agent Michael Hebert and Agent Dylan Egan.

Agent Rescues Two People From Lake Salvador

Release Date: 10/15/2017

A Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agent rescued two people from a sinking vessel in Lake Salvador on Oct. 14.

LDWF Lt. Jason Russo received a call around 5 p.m. from the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office about a capsized vessel in Lake Salvador and two individuals in the water without personal flotation devices.

Lt. Russo then contacted LDWF Agent Joshua Laviolette, who was on patrol in the area of the capsized vessel.

Agent Laviolette responded by boat and was able to locate and rescue the two 17-year-old males from Belle Chase from the water.   Agent Laviolette then transported the rescued individuals to a boat launch where family members were waiting.

According to the operator of the vessel they broke down in the middle of the lake and started to get swamped due to winds and large waves coming over the vessel.  There were no injuries involved in the incident.

Agents Cite Men For Recreational Fishing Violations

Release Date: 10/12/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two men for alleged recreational fishing violations on Oct. 5.

Agents cited Joel A. Tyler, 50, of Lena, and Le Chien 38, of Folsom, for possession of undersized spotted sea trout.  Tyler was also cited for possession of over the limit of spotted sea trout.  Chien was also cited for angling without basic and saltwater fishing licenses.

Agents were on patrol on Hwy. 1 between Port Fourchon and Grand Isle when they spotted the two subjects fishing off the side of the road.  Agents found Tyler in possession of 32 spotted sea trout with four of those being undersized.  Agents found Chien in possession of 217 sand trout, 22 croakers and four spotted seatrout with one being undersized.  Chien also did not possess basic or saltwater fishing licenses.

Licensed fishermen are allowed 25 spotted seatrout per person per day in this area and they must be at least 12 inches long.

Taking over the limit and undersized spotted sea trout each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 30 days in jail.  Angling without basic or saltwater fishing licenses each carries up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

Tyler may also face civil restitution totaling $925.12 for the replacement value of the spotted sea trout.

Chien may also be responsible for civil restitution totaling $1,061 for the replacement value of the sand trout, croakers and spotted sea trout.

Agents seized the fish and donated them to a local charity.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Nicholas Guillory, Corporal Ronnie Engelhard and Agent Jonathan Morrison.

Cast Netters Cited On Rockefeller Refuge for Shrimping Violations

Release Date: 10/10/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited several recreational shrimpers on the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge in Vermilion and Cameron parishes over the past several days.

Extra patrols were coordinated near Rollover and Joseph’s Harbor in response to complaints of cast netters violating refuge regulations and selling some of the catch.

On Sept. 30 agents cited Philip K. Breaux, 62, of Youngsville for selling shrimp that he caught from the refuge.

On Oct. 5 agents cited Justin R. Choate, 42, of Pecan Island, and Jonathan Goudeaux, 54, of Lafayette, were each cited for taking over the limit of shrimp.

Agents cited Rodney L. Broussard, 62, and Brenda L. Broussard, 54, both from Henderson, Nicholas J. Touchet, 37, of Abbeville, Barrett Beraud, 38, of Maurice, and Jason S. Royston, 45, of Lafayette, for entering the refuge before legal sunrise on Oct. 6.  Also on Oct. 6, agents cited Steven D. Johnson, 39, and Gerald J. Constantin, 66, both from Rayne, and Bernard J. Constantin, 64, of Crowley, for taking over the limit of shrimp.

On Oct. 8 agents cited Woodrow J. Goodly, 64, of Lafayette, and Philip R. Duos, 50 of Crowley, for taking over the limit of shrimp.

Agents seized a total of 228.5 pounds of shrimp in connection with the over limit violations and donated them to a local charity.

Cast netters are not allowed on the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge before legal sunrise and are allowed 25 pounds of shrimp per day during an inside open shrimp season.  The shrimp can only be used for personal consumption or bait for sport fishing.

Selling fish caught recreationally brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  In addition, a person shall forfeit his fishing license, and he shall not be issued a recreational license of any type and shall be barred from participating in any type of recreational fishing for a period of one year from the date of conviction.

Taking over the limit of shrimp or entering the refuge before legal sunrise carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail for each offense.

Body of Alexandria Man Recovered from Lake Buhlow

Release Date: 10/06/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents are investigating a fatal single vessel boating incident that took place in Rapides Parish on Oct. 5.

Agents are investigating the death of Philip Brandt III, 62, of Alexandria, after he was found in Lake Buhlow next to a red kayak.

Boaters in the area located the body of Brandt around 4:30 p.m. and called for help.  Brandt was pronounced dead on the scene and his body was turned over to the Rapides Parish Coroner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

A red kayak and a paddle belonging to Brandt were found about 100 yards from his body.  His body was found without a personal flotation device.

Louisiana Operation Game Thief, Inc. Issued $2,900 in Rewards At Meeting

Release Date: 10/06/2017

Louisiana Operation Game Thief, Inc. (LOGT), a Louisiana wildlife crime-stoppers program, awarded $2,900 to diligent citizens statewide at their quarterly meeting on Oct. 5 in Woodworth.

The LOGT board reviewed six cases that included public tips from informants.  A total of 20 subjects were apprehended and a total of 28 offenses were written in regards to the reviewed cases.

The cases reviewed and awarded money to the public for their assistance consisted of two alligator cases, a whooping crane case, a deer case, a dove baiting case and a migratory waterfowl case.

Anyone wishing to report wildlife or fisheries violations should anonymously call LDWF’s 24-hour toll free Operation Game Thief hotline at 1-800-442-2511 or utilize LDWF's tip411 program.  To use the tip411 program, tipsters can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone and Android apps.

LOGT was instituted in 1984 and provides cash rewards for information leading to the arrest of violators of fish and wildlife regulations.  Funds are raised through private donations, court directed contributions and through contributions from cooperative endeavor agreements with organizations such as the National Wild Turkey Federation and Quality Deer Management Association.

To make a donation to the LOGT that can be used for cash rewards, please contact Lt. Will Roberts at wroberts@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF Names New Chief of Enforcement Division

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Col. Martin
LDWF Sec. Jack Montoucet Tabs Col. Martin as New Chief of Enforcement

On Sept. 21, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), promoted Lt. Col. Sammy Martin to Colonel, which is the highest ranking position in the Enforcement Division.  Col. Martin takes over for the recently retired Col. Joseph “Joey” Broussard, who served the department for 27 years of which the last three years were as Colonel.

Col. Martin, 57, of Chauvin, has been an agent for 35 years.  Col. Martin has received numerous awards during his career including LDWF’s Outstanding Agent of the Year in 1992, three Meritorious Service Awards and the Chief’s Award in 2014.

“On Sept. 21, I selected Lt. Col. Sammy Martin to take over as head of the Enforcement Division. With more than 30 years of experience and dedication to LDWF, I am confident that Col. Martin will do a great job in enforcement’s top leadership position,” said LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet.  “My decision was made after assessing interviews of candidates, consultation along with the direction I and Col. Martin envision for the future of the enforcement division.”

Col. Martin graduated from the Louisiana POST Training Academy in 1982.  As a field agent for 15 years he mainly patrolled Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes including Grand Isle.  In 1997 he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant to serve as the district supervisor.  Achieving the rank of Captain in 2004, Col. Martin was tasked with managing the Region 6 Office in Thibodaux encompassing St. James, St John, Assumption, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes including Grand Isle.

Col. Martin was promoted to the rank of Major in 2009 and assigned to LDWF headquarters overseeing four of the enforcement division’s eight regions.  In 2014 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and oversaw the enforcement division’s boating safety program serving as the states Boating Law Administrator, budget, search and rescue, training, emergency services, statewide strike force, maritime security, public information, quartermaster, communications and aviation sections among other duties.

“As I have risen through the ranks, I have been fortunate to perform a multitude of duties.  I have patrolled the gulf and inshore waters for commercial and recreational violations, performed search and rescue missions following hurricanes, checked hunters in the field, worked side by side with some of the best men and women in law enforcement, became a captain of a region, worked administrative positions at headquarters and now finally as colonel in charge of the entire division,” said Col. Martin.  “These experiences have given me a well-rounded perspective on what it means to be an enforcement agent and how I can effectively lead these agents as their colonel."

Des Allemands Man Found with Undersized and Over the Limit of Catfish

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited a Des Allemands man for alleged recreational catfish violations on Sept. 24.

Agents cited Kerry Fonseca, 48, for taking over the limit of catfish, possessing undersized catfish and for failing to display required navigation lights.

Agents observed Fonseca actively operating his vessel within Bayou Des Allemands around 7:45 p.m.  Agents immediately conducted a boating safety inspection as Fonseca failed to display proper navigation lights.

During inspection, agents identified a large crate of blue catfish within the vessel.  Fonseca had identified himself as a recreational fisherman and stated he recently fished trotlines to take catfish home to his family.

Agents found Fonseca in possession of 120 catfish of which 62 were under the 12 inch minimum length requirement.  The recreational limit for catfish is 100 fish per person, per day. In addition, recreational fishermen may possess undersized catfish not to exceed 25 fish. Agents seized the blue catfish and donated them to a local charity.

Possessing over the limit and undersized recreational catfish each carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Improper or no running lights carries a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.  Fonseca may also be ordered to pay civil restitution for the replacement value of the fish totaling up to $100.

Agents participating in the case are Cpl. Kyle Wagner and Sr. Agent Chelsea Kling.

Castor Man Arrested for Drug Violations on Loggy Bayou WMA

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested a Castor man for alleged drug violations on Sept. 24 in Bienville Parish.

Agents arrested Christopher Lee, 43, for possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, possession of drug paraphernalia and fishing without a basic fishing license.

Agents were on patrol on the Loggy Bayou Wildlife Management Area (WMA) when they spotted Lee.  During questioning, agents found that Lee had been fishing and tried to hide his fishing pole in the woods as the agents approached him.  Agents found the fishing pole and a meth pipe next to the pole.

During the arrest, agents found three bags of methamphetamine in Lee’s pocket and also learned he did not possess a basic fishing license.  Agents seized over six grams of methamphetamine, a drug pipe and $2,141 in cash.

Possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute brings up to a $50,000 fine and two to 30 years in prison.  Possession of drug paraphernalia carries up to a $500 fine and up to six months in jail.  Failing to possess a basic fishing license brings up to a $50 fine and 15 days in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Sgt. Jared McIver and Agent Justin Greer.

Syndicate content