Contact: Sgt. Gregory Rhodes, Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement, 302-739-9913 or 302-542-6102, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
DNREC Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Blotter Nov. 14-28
Reminder: Winter is time to bring in, repair recreational crab pots
DOVER (Dec. 3, 2012) – To achieve public compliance through education and enforcement actions that help conserve Delaware’s fish and wildlife resources and ensure safe boating and public safety, DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement agents responded to 86 complaints and issued 105 citations between Nov. 14 and 28. Incidents of particular note included:
· Two Millsboro men were arrested in a deer-hunting-related incident on Nov. 23 in Gumboro. Kevin C. Smith, 24, was arrested and charged with felony disregarding a police officer’s command, resisting arrest, conspiracy third degree, malicious mischief with a motor vehicle, criminal trespass third degree, illegal operation of an off-highway vehicle, possession of unlawfully killed antlered deer and failure to tag antlered deer. Coby Abbott, 24, was arrested and charged with resisting arrest, conspiracy third degree, two counts of criminal trespass third degree, possession of unlawfully killed antlered deer and failure to tag antlered deer. The two men were arraigned in Justice of the Peace Court 3 in Georgetown and released on bond, pending trial at a later date.
· Fish and Wildlife Enforcement is seeking information on the whereabouts of Christopher R. Wessell, 31, of Dover, after he was charged on numerous counts in connection with an investigation into illegal deer hunting. When located, he will be arraigned on 15 charges: two counts of wanton waste, two counts of unlicensed hunting, failure to tag antlered deer, failure to retain tag on antlered deer, failure to register antlered deer, butchering antlered deer prior to registration, possession of unlawfully killed antlered deer, and an assortment of other charges. Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Mr. Wessell is asked to call Fish and Wildlife Enforcement at 302-739-4580.
Citations issued by violation type included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Trespassing to hunt (3), hunting without a hunter safety certificate (1), carrying a loaded weapon in a motor vehicle (1), hunting with an unplugged shotgun (2), failure to register antlered deer prior to butchering (2), failure to purchase antlered deer tags (2), failure to register antlerless deer prior to butchering (3), hunting deer with tags detached from hunting license (1), hunting outside a blind or stand in violation of area map rule (1), possession of Canada geese over the limit (1), failure to obtain a hunter identification program (HIP) number prior to hunting migratory waterfowl (1), hunting red fox during a closed season (1), excessive speed in a motor vehicle on a state wildlife area (1), operating a motor vehicle off established roadways on a state wildlife area (1), and damaging state property (1), all New Castle County; Possession of unlawfully taken game (11), and possession of lead shot while waterfowl hunting (2), New Castle and Kent counties; Hunting without a license (3), hunting from a motor vehicle (2), failure to tag antlered deer (5), failure to register antlered deer (5), failure to tag antlerless deer (11), failure to register antlerless deer (7), and failure to display hunter orange during a firearms deer season (2), New Castle and Sussex counties; Entering a state forest after hours (1), possession of alcohol on state forest property (1), and hunting deer during a closed season (1), Kent County; Possession of unlawfully killed antlered deer (2), hunting waterfowl over bait (2), hunting waterfowl without required federal stamp (1), hunting deer with prohibited weapon (1), failure to retain tag on antlerless deer (1), and illegal operation of off-highway vehicle (1), Sussex County.
Boating Safety: Unregistered motor vessel (1), allowing use of non-compliant vessel (1), and operating a vessel without required navigation lights (3), New Castle County; operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets aboard (3), New Castle and Sussex counties; no life jacket on child age 12 or younger as required by law (1), Sussex County.
Public Safety/Other: Malicious mischief with a motor vehicle (2), resisting arrest (3), and third degree conspiracy (5), New Castle and Sussex counties; careless driving (1), New Castle County; felony disregarding police command (1), and criminal trespass (3), Sussex County.
Are you AWARE?
The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section reminds recreational crabbers that all crab pots must be removed from the water from Dec. 1 through Feb. 28.
Winter is a good time to repair crab pots and replace or refresh required markings. Recreational crab pots must be marked with the owner’s full name and permanent mailing address, either on the required white buoy or on a waterproof tag attached to the buoy.
Crabbers also should check the condition of the required by-catch excluder, a rigid metal or plastic frame attached at the funnel entrance of the crab pot to reduce the possibility of diamondback terrapins entering the pot and drowning.
Citizens are encouraged to report fish and wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Section by calling 302-739-4580.
Vol. 42, No. 463