Contact: Sgt. John McDerby, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police, 302-739-9913 or 302-354-1386, or Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police Blotter: Dec. 21-27
Reminder for the week: Time to purchase your 2016 Delaware fishing license
DOVER (Dec. 31, 2015) – 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 Natural Resources Police officers between Dec. 21-27 made 672 contacts with anglers, boaters, hunters and the general public, including 41 vessel boardings for boating safety and fishing regulation compliance checks. Officers responded to 24 complaints and issued 16 citations, four of which were related to the C&D Canal Conservation Area and associated recreational trail, where there is an increased Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police presence.
Items of particular note:
· On Dec. 22, following an investigation, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested George J. Walsh Sr., 67, of Lewes, and charged him with felony impersonating a police officer and third-degree criminal trespass near Lewes. Walsh was video-arraigned by Justice of the Peace Court 2 in Rehoboth Beach and released on $6,050 unsecured bond pending trial at a later date.
· On Dec. 21, Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police cited Rico Lopez, 19, of Frankford, for unlawfully harvesting oysters from the Lewes & Rehoboth Canal, where recreational oyster harvest is prohibited. Lopez was issued fines totaling $107, including court costs.
Citations issued this week by offense category included the following, with the number of charges in parentheses:
Wildlife Conservation: Hunting with an unplugged shotgun capable of holding more than three shells (1), possession of prohibited lead shot while hunting migratory waterfowl (1), and operating a motor vehicle off an established roadway on a state wildlife area (4)*.
Fisheries Conservation: Unlawful harvest of shellfish (1).
Boating and Boating Safety: Operating a vessel with insufficient number of life jackets (3), no boating safety certificate (1), no navigation lights after sunset (1), and operating an unregistered motor vessel (1).
Public Safety: Impersonating a police officer (1), third-degree criminal trespass (1), and carrying a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle (1).
* Citations issued at the C&D Canal Conservation Area.
Are you AWARE?
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police remind anglers that it’s time to purchase their 2016 Delaware fishing licenses, as 2015 licenses expire Dec. 31. A valid fishing license is required for fishing, crabbing and clamming in Delaware in both tidal and non-tidal waters.
A resident annual fishing license costs $8.50 for ages 16 through 64. Anglers under the age of 16 and residents age 65 and older are not required to purchase fishing licenses in Delaware. Some requirements differ for non-resident anglers. Exempt persons may purchase fishing licenses if they so choose to help support fisheries management in Delaware.
Recreational anglers fishing Delaware waters also are required to obtain a Delaware Fisherman Information Network (F.I.N.) number; this number is generated automatically on all individual fishing licenses sold through Delaware’s electronic licensing systems. License-exempt anglers, including Delaware residents 65 and older; non-resident boat fishing license holders who do not have an individual license; and individuals fishing on licensed boats who do not have an individual license, must obtain their free F.I.N. number by visiting www.delaware-fin.com or calling 800-432-9228 toll-free.
Delaware fishing licenses are sold online, at the licensing desk in DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, and by license agents statewide. To find a participating agent, or to purchase a license online, visit Delaware Licenses. For additional information on Delaware fishing licenses, call 302-739-9918.
DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife recognizes and thanks the majority of anglers, hunters and boaters who comply with and support Delaware’s fishing, hunting and boating laws and regulations. Citizens are encouraged to report fish, wildlife and boating violations to the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police by calling 302-739-4580. Wildlife violations may also be reported anonymously to Operation Game Theft by calling 800-292-3030 or online at http://de.gov/ogt.
Follow Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police on Facebook, www.facebook.com/pages/Delaware-Fish-Wildlife-Natural-Resources-Police.Vol. 45, No. 440