Minnesota Conservation Officer Tales - April 2008Conservation Officer (CO) Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) came across a snowmobiler who was doing some “testing” after installing new parts on his motor. When stopped for excessive speed, the snowmobiler was asked, “How fast do you think you were going?” He replied, “All of 90 at least.”
Editor’s note: Minnesota conservation officer tales is produced monthly by the Minnesota DNR Enforcement Division.
ALL OF 90 AT LEAST
Conservation Officer (CO) Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) came across a snowmobiler who was doing some “testing” after installing new parts on his motor. When stopped for excessive speed, the snowmobiler was asked, “How fast do you think you were going?” He replied, “All of 90 at least.” Woinarowicz showed him the radar gun with a reading of 96 miles per hour and then issued him a citation. The rider appeared satisfied by the performance of his new motor parts.
THEY SEEMED TOO HAPPY TO SEE ME
During a routine license inspection, a pair of anglers appeared to be almost too happy to see CO Randy Hanzal (Brookston). After a short investigation, a small amount of marijuana and other drug paraphernalia was seized.
TIP LEADS TO FATHER AND SON
CO Phil George (Mantorville) received an anonymous call about two deer hanging in a shed. The officer located the property owner and found the deer. Neither deer was tagged or registered. Both deer appeared to have been there for some time. The homeowner’s son, while coyote hunting, shot one deer with a small caliber rifle. The father and son face big game violations that include fines, restitution, loss of hunting privileges, and loss of a firearm.
CO Greg Oldakowski (Wadena) assisted a neighboring officer in attempting to track down a snowmobiler who ran over a fox several times in the middle of a lake.
A DEAD WHAT?
CO Jackie Glaser (Mound) responded to a call of a dead “wildebeest” in a local Scientific and Natural Area. Upon further inspection, it turned out to be a dead deer.
CO Aaron Kahre (Minnetonka) was working Lake Minnetonka in the Excelsior area when he approached a portable fish house where a hand auger lying beside the door. Two men inside were sitting on buckets with a fish locator and a jiggle stick in front of them. Kahre asked why they didn’t have any holes to fish through. They got tired after about five inches of drilling with the hand auger and decided to just pretend fish before heading home.
A LONG WAY FROM HOME
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) ran a license check on what appeared to be an abandoned fish house on a northern Minnesota lake. The check showed that the fish house, which belonged to a 92-year-old man, may have been stolen more than 20 years ago from southern Minnesota.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) received a complaint of a muskrat trying to get into a convenience store in Moose Lake. Apparently the young rodent hung out in the car wash for a few days and then moved to the front of the store where it attempted to go inside when customers opened the door. Staples and a Moose Lake police officer caught the animal and transported it to a remote swamp area.
BITE YOUR TONGUE
An angler became disgusted with his dog while conversing and commending CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) for the work he does. As the dog owner was producing his license, the dog did what dogs sometimes do on a brand new canvas house.
REMEDIAL MATH AND REMEDIAL ETHICS
CO Mike Martin (St. Cloud) checked the license of a father and daughter angling on an area lake. The father said he had a license, but not with him. The daughter said she was 15 so she didn’t need a license. When Martin asked the girl for her birth year she told him 1990. She tried to change her story, but the date she gave still made her 16 and in need of a license. A summons was issued.
THAT GOT MY GOAT
An individual called CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) to report his dogs had taken down a small deer that had passed through his yard. Upon further investigation it was discovered that a neighborhood goat was the unfortunate victim.
FIRE, BEER AND BOOM
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) noticed a large cloud of dark black smoke rising from a distant farmyard. Fearing a structure fire, he investigated, finding a Winnebago type RV fully engulfed in fire and three people standing around the blaze drinking beer. They later admitted to lighting the RV on fire to salvage the scrap metal from the shell and frame. While Woinarowicz was obtaining their information for a court summons, the gas tank on the RV exploded, sending a fireball 50 feet into the air. The local fire department put out the blaze.
A CHANGE IN ATTITUDE
CO Bob Gorecki (Baudette) found a fish house on Red Lake after the removal deadline, which had melted approximately two feet into the ice. The owner of the house and Gorecki chipped the ice away from the house and eventually got it off the ice. The owner was very grateful and said he had never met a kinder and more helpful game warden. However, the man’s attitude changed when Gorecki arrested him for several outstanding warrants.
THAT’S HOW WE DO IT IN TEXAS
CO Stacey Sharp (Bemidji) along with CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) responded to a Turn In Poacher call of a person shooting at a deer with an arrow from the box of a truck. The suspect and his mother were located. They said that was how they hunted in Texas. The pair said they shot at a rabbit, not a deer. Enforcement action was taken.
ANOTHER EPISODE OF ‘DIRTY JOBS’
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) and CO Joe Stattelman (Detroit Lakes) assisted the Becker County Sheriff’s Department with lake security during the taping of an episode of the television show “Dirty Jobs.” The episode involved the removal of a vehicle that had fallen through the ice. The next day a vehicle went through the ice on Little Pine Lake. All four people got out safely before the pickup sank in approximately 50 feet of water. The ice was only 4 inches thick because the Ottertail River flows through the lake.
WOMAN RUN OVER BY HER OWN CAR
CO Todd Langevin (Center City) responded to an accident where a woman had been run over by her own car. The woman pulled into a parking lot and placed her car in park. As she exited her car, it started rolling backwards and knocked the woman down. The woman’s leg was pinned under the front wheel of the car. As bystanders held the car from rolling back further, fire rescuers lifted the vehicle off the woman’s leg and transported her to the local hospital.