Enforcement

LDWF Agents Assist with Saving Three Year Old Boy’s Life

Release Date: 05/12/2015

Authorities saved a three year old boy from drowning in a swimming pool at a residence on the Amite River Diversion Canal in Livingston Parish on May 10.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents Lt. Louis Burnett and Senior Agent Michael Marques Jr. were on vessel patrol around 5 p.m. on the Diversion Canal when they were flagged down by a woman from a dock near her residence on Home Port Road.  The woman told them that a three year old boy was found face down in her pool a few minutes ago.

Senior Agent Marques Jr. raced to the pool about 25 yards from the dock and found the child lying on the ground next to the pool not breathing.  Marques Jr. put his hand on the child’s chest and felt the heart beating.  He then cleared the airway of the child by performing the head-tilt, chin-lift maneuver.  The child then let out a gasp of air that prompted Marques Jr. to lay the child on his side to promote more breathing.

While Marques Jr. was performing first responder aid to the child, Lt. Burnett was radioing for paramedics to the scene and securing the vessel.

Marques Jr. and Lt. Burnett were able to keep the child breathing until some volunteers from the Fifth Ward Fire Department showed up with oxygen for the child.  The LDWF agents and Fire Department personnel were able to keep the child breathing on oxygen until Acadian Ambulance paramedics arrived shortly thereafter.  The child was then airlifted to Our Lady of the Lake Hospital in Baton Rouge.  The child was admitted into the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and is expected to make a full recovery.

“Everybody involved did a great job to keep this child alive,” said Col. Joey Broussard, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division.  “Senior Agent Marques’ efforts were heroic and the fact he acted so quickly probably saved the child’s life.”

All LDWF agents are trained and certified in first responder training which includes cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) every year.

According to an adult male, he turned his back on the child briefly while gathering some fishing poles.  When he was finished he then found the child face down in the swimming pool and immediately retrieved the boy’s body.  He then attempted CPR before Marques Jr. arrived on the scene.

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

Husband and Wife Sentenced for Fishing License Fraud

Release Date: 05/11/2015

A couple from New Orleans pleaded guilty in Orleans Parish District Court for recreational fishing license fraud on May 11.

Judge Tracey Flemings-Davillier sentenced Derwin Hill, 60, and Diana Hill, 60, to each pay a $1,500 fine, two years of jail suspended and two years of probation.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents arrested the couple on Feb. 27 for filing false public records for their roles in forging a recreational fishing license in order to falsely make a claim after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

The LDWF Licensing Section notified agents of the Hill’s attempt to forge a recreational license.  During the investigation, agents learned that Diana allegedly forged a 2011-12 fishing license purchased by Derwin to reflect a 2010-11 recreational fishing license so that they could make a claim with the Gulf Coast Claims Facility and Deepwater Horizon Settlement Program.

Agents were able to gather the Hill’s claim information from the National Center for Disaster Fraud.  Agents leaned that the Hill’s made two separate claims with the altered fishing license.  The claim with Gulf Coast Claims Facility was filed on Oct. 31, 2011 for lost earnings in the fishing industry.  Derwin stated the lost total earnings totaled $19,500 in the two claims.

Derwin also filed a subsistence claim with Deepwater Horizon Settlement Program on Oct 24, 2012 for not being able to fish due to the oil spill.

On Jan. 8, 2013, agents met with the Hill’s to interview them about the fraudulently altered fishing license and claim.  During the interview, Diana stated that she changed the dates on the fishing license.

The Hill’s did not receive any money from the claims due to the fraudulent nature of the fishing license used for the claim.

Agents participating in the case were Sgt. Edward Ridgel and Senior Agent Ronnie Engelhard.  Assistant District Attorney Jeff Hall prosecuted the case.

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

Search and Rescue Crews Recover Body of Missing Boater

Release Date: 05/09/2015

Search and rescue crews found the body of a River Ridge man around 1:30 p.m. today, May 9 following a single boat incident in Rattlesnake Bayou in Plaqumines Parish.

Search crews from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office recovered the body of Gary Folks, 61, near where he entered the water after getting ejected from his vessel.

The boating incident occurred around 9 a.m. in Rattlesnake Bayou about 12 miles south of Happy Jack.  According to the surviving passenger the two men were cruising in Rattlesnake Bayou when Folks lost steering control and the boat took a violent turn ejecting both men into the water.  The passenger was able to get away from the unmanned circling boat and make it to shore.  He never saw what happened to Folks.

The passenger was able to make it to shore where he flagged down a passing boater and then called for help around 9:20 a.m..  The search crews were able to recover the boat that eventually grounded itself into the bank of the bayou.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.  Neither man was wearing a personal flotation device when they were ejected into the water.  Folks’ body was turned over to the Plaquemines Parish Coroner’s Office to determine the official cause of death.

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

Body of Missing Denham Springs Man Found in Iberville Parish

Release Date: 05/07/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents recovered the body of a Denham Springs man this morning, May 7, near the Bayou Sorrell locks in the Intracoastal Canal in Iberville Parish.

LDWF agents along with the Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office (IPSO) and the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office began searching for James L. Haley, 61, on May 1 around 10:30 p.m.

Haley’s body was found around 10:15 a.m. about 12 miles south of Plaquemine and 9 miles downstream from where he fell from a houseboat in Grand River.

According to eyewitnesses Haley stepped off a houseboat and slipped while attempting to return to his own vessel. Haley fell into the water and surfaced two times and then disappeared.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.  Haley’s body was turned over to the Iberville Parish Coroner’s Office to determine an official cause of death.

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

Shreveport Man Cited for Turkey Hunting Violation

Release Date: 04/30/2015

A Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agent cited a Shreveport man for an alleged turkey hunting violation in Bienville Parish on April 25.

LDWF Sgt. Patrick Staggs cited Audie Arnold, 67, for hunting turkeys over a baited area.  Sgt. Staggs observed Arnold hunting turkeys from an elevated box blind surrounded by three corn feeders.

According to the 2015 Turkey Regulations pamphlet, no person shall hunt or take turkeys by the aid of baiting or on or over a baited area.  Hunters are not allowed to place, expose, deposit or scatter corn, wheat or other grain, salt or other feed to lure turkeys to their hunting area.

Hunting turkeys over a baited area brings a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.

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

Search Crews Looking for Missing Boater in Ascension Parish

Release Date: 04/28/2015

Search and rescue crews are currently looking for a missing boater on Bayou Manchac in Ascension Parish.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division along with the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office and the St. Amant Fire Department began searching for Allen Fitzgerald, 23, of Prairieville, last night, April 27, around 10 p.m.

According to the passenger in the front of the boat the two men were out boating in a 12-foot bateau with a six horsepower engine.  They were travelling on Bayou Manchac about three to four miles upstream from the Amite River when they began taking on water.

The passenger in the front of the boat was able to jump in the water before the boat sank.  Fitzgerald was in the back of the boat when it was taking on water and it is unknown at this time of his location.  The passenger was able to make it to shore and to a house where he called 911 for help.

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.  According to the passenger neither of the men was wearing a personal flotation device.

The search crews looked for Fitzgerald till 3 a.m. and resumed the search at daylight this morning.

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

LDWF Agents Cite Two Men for Oyster Violations in Terrebonne Parish

Release Date: 04/17/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited two subjects in Terrebonne Parish for alleged oyster violations on April 15.

Agents patrolling in Lucien Bay spotted the vessel and crewmembers harvesting oysters from a private lease without the owner’s permission.

Agents made contact with the occupants and cited Jessie Dardar, 68, from Houma, and Brian Walling, 48, from Montegut, for unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease and failing to have written permission.

The agents seized the dredge and returned 15 sacks of oysters to the water.  Agents also seized the vessel on a department seizure order.

Unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Failing to have written permission carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  The violators could also be sentenced to perform 40 hours of community service and only be allowed to harvest oysters from a vessel with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

The agents participating in the case are Lt. Joe Arnaud, Sgt. Bryan Marie and Senior Agent Norman Deroche.

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

Nine Subjects Cited for Oyster Violations in Terrebonne Parish

Release Date: 04/10/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited nine subjects in Terrebonne Parish for alleged oyster violations on April 8.

Agents patrolling in Hell Hole Bayou spotted several vessels and crewmembers harvesting oysters in an unapproved area.

Agents made contact with the occupants and cited Jolio C. Garcia, 30, Omar Ever Aviles Gomez, 28, Daniel M. Sanchez, 21, Francisco Arnulfo Ruiz Maradiaga, 34, all from Houma; Hermilo G. Luria, 25, Mario G. Lara, 37, Carlos T. Gonzaga, 30, Francisco A. Tenoria, 30, all from Gray; and Eduardo L. Alejo, 27, from Theriot, for harvesting oysters from an unapproved polluted area and unlawfully taking oysters off a private lease without written permission.

The agents seized the dredges and returned 115 sacks of oysters to the water.  Agents also seized the vessels on a department seizure order.

Taking oysters from an unapproved polluted area brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Taking oysters from a private lease without permission carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  The men could also have their oyster harvester licenses revoked by the department for up to one year.  The violators could also be sentenced to perform 40 hours of community service and only be allowed to harvest oysters from a vessel with a vessel monitoring device for up to one year.

The agents participating in the case are Sgt. Bryan Marie and agent Richard Bean.

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

Westwego Man Arrested for Crab Trap Theft

Release Date: 04/09/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents arrested a Westwego man on April 8 for allegedly using stolen crab traps.

Agents received a tip in mid-March about a man stealing crab traps on Lake Salvador in Lafourche Parish.  On March 20, while patrolling the area LDWF agents observed Kurt Frickey, 29, utilizing stolen crab traps and possessing untagged crab traps.

During the subsequent investigation, agents found Frickey utilizing 206 stolen crab traps that were stolen from 25 different crab fishermen.

Agents obtained an arrest warrant in Lafourche Parish and were able to apprehend Frickey and book him into the Lafourche Parish jail for felony theft.

Agents involved in the case are Lt. Joe Arnaud, Sgt. Bryan Marie and Senior Agent Dean Aucoin.

Felony theft brings up to a $3,000 fine and up to five years in jail.  Utilizing stolen crab traps and possessing untagged crab traps each carries a $900 to $950 fine and up to six months in jail.

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

Agents Make Drug Cases in Jefferson Parish

Release Date: 04/08/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents made three drug related cases from April 2 to 4 in Jefferson Parish.

On April 2, agents observed a group of three men on Elmer's Island Refuge with glass bottles where they are prohibited.  Agents found Dylan W. Melancon, 18, and Brett M. Rodrigue, 19, both of Golden Meadow, in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.  Agents also discovered Jhy M. Allison, 21, of Golden Meadow in illegal possession of drug paraphernalia and also cited him for having glass bottles.

On April 3, agents observed a vehicle on Hwy. 1 in Grand Isle swerve several times over the center line.  During the traffic stop, agents found the driver, Jeremy K. Buckner, 36, of Leesville, in possession of 24 packs of synthetic marijuana.  He was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. The passenger, Michael L. Parrish, 39, of Leesville, was found to have an open alcoholic beverage.

On April 4, agents observed a man fishing on Elmer's Island Refuge.  Agents made contact with Andrew L. Smith, 28, of Avondale, and found him in illegal possession of marijuana.  Agents booked Smith into the Jefferson Parish Jail.

Illegal possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute is a felony and brings a 10 to 50 year jail sentence and up to $50,000 in fines.  Possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia each carries up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.  Possession of an open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle carries a fine up to $100.  Having glass bottles on the Elmer’s Island Refuge brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.

Agents involved in the cases are Senior Agent Dale Wheat and Agent Lucas Hidalgo.

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

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