Enforcement

Agents Make Closed Season Shrimp Case

Release Date: 05/09/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two subjects for alleged closed season shrimping violations on May 4 in Plaquemines Parish.

Agents cited Marvin Smith, 58, of Venice, and Etienne Pellegal III, 56, of Boothville, for using skimmers to harvest shrimp during a closed shrimp season.

Agents observed the men actively shrimping in the Yellow Cotton Bay area around 11:21 a.m. on May 4.  The Louisiana spring inshore shrimp season was currently closed at the time of the stop.

Agents seized 1,291 pounds of shrimp and sold them at the dock for the highest bid.

Using skimmers during a closed shrimp season carries a fine up to $950 and up to 120 days in jail.  Additionally, if convicted the men could be sentenced to harvest shrimp only from a vessel with an approved vessel monitoring system monitored by LDWF.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Jason Gernados, Senior Agent William Bartlett, Agent Jonathan Boudreaux and Agent Anthony Corner.

Four Men Honored for Heroic Achievements at May Commission Meeting

Release Date: 05/04/2017

Four Men Honored for Heroic Achievements at May Commission Meeting
Four Men Honored for Heroic Achievements at May Commission Meeting

Four men were honored at the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) meeting in Baton Rouge this afternoon, May 4.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Sgt. Rusty Perry received the LDWF Enforcement Meritorious Service Award and Winn Parish Firefighter Buddy King received the LDWF Enforcement Citizens Meritorious Service Award at the meeting.

Sgt. Rusty Perry and Buddy King were notified about citizens trapped in their homes or stranded because of rising flood waters along the Dugdemona River east of Winnfield on March 10, 2016.  Sgt. Perry and King attempted to get to this location by vessel through rapid and swift flood waters.  While in route to the location, the vessel capsized because of the rough conditions.

Sgt. Perry and King remained with the capsized vessel while being pinned to trees from the strong flood waters and after several hours and failed rescue attempts were successfully airlifted from the water by a Louisiana Air National Guard helicopter crew.  Sgt. Perry and King both risked their lives trying to help others.  The helicopter crew will be honored at the June LWFC meeting.

LDWF Lt. Beau Robertson also received an LDWF Enforcement Life Saving Award while Phillip Trosclair received an LDWF Enforcement Citizens Exceptional Bravery Award at the LWFC meeting.

Lt. Robertson received a call on April 5, 2016 about two overdue 19-year-old men onboard a vessel that went on an offshore fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico out of Joseph’s Harbor on Rockefeller Refuge.  Lt. Robertson and LDWF Rockefeller Refuge Manager Trosclair searched for the men overnight in rough conditions.

At approximately 9:30 a.m. on April 6, 2016, Lt. Robertson and Trosclair located the two men and their capsized 18-foot aluminum boat about 12 miles offshore south of the mouth of Joseph’s Harbor Bayou in the Gulf of Mexico.  Trosclair was able to steer the vessel in rough seas to get close enough to the men for Lt. Robertson to pull the men into the rescue vessel.

Lt. Robertson and Trosclair rotated performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on one of the men, who was unresponsive, and operating the vessel until they reached the landing where an emergency personnel were waiting.  The unresponsive man was pronounced dead at the hospital while the other man made a full recovery.

It was later learned that the survivor was suffering from extreme hypothermia and had just left the capsized the vessel in an effort to swim to an oil platform in the distance before Lt. Robertson and Trosclair arrived on the scene.  It is unlikely that the survivor would have been able to reach the platform alive.

LDWF Enforcement Division Welcomes 23 New Agents at Graduation

Release Date: 04/26/2017

LDWF Enforcement Division Welcomes 23 New Agents at Graduation

From left to right (Front Row): Col. Joey Broussard, James Smith, Amanda LeBlanc, Michael Treadway, Harvey Pearce, Thomas Forehand, Richard Heinold, Michael Meserole, Seth Courtney and Major Spencer Cole.
From left to right (Middle Row): Justin Greer, Jeremiah Fletcher, Jonathan Boudreaux, Javier Bazaldua, Gerald Sander, Dylan Egan, Charley Hawkes, and Zachary Meche.
From left to right (Back Row): Jacob Neal, Jeremy Triplett, Anthony Corner, Jonathan Morrison, Zachary Allen, Cameron Densmore, and Matthew Perkins.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Law Enforcement Academy today, April 26, graduated its 31st class of cadets into the ranks of LDWF Enforcement Division agents at a ceremony in Baton Rouge.

After seven months of intensive physical and academic training at the academy, 23 newly commissioned agents are ready to begin enforcing hunting, fishing and boating regulations that govern the use of the state's natural resources.

LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet was the keynote speaker at the ceremony.  “Going through the department’s training process has shaped these cadets into agents for what we hope is a long and successful career with the department,” said Montoucet.  “I’m proud to be a part of this graduation and to serve as their first secretary of the department.”

Col. Joey Broussard, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division, presented certificates and recited the Oath of Office making the cadet’s transition to commissioned agents official.  “We welcome these cadets into the Enforcement Division ranks as they fill much needed positions across the state.  Today we celebrate a much deserved graduation day.  Going forward these newly decorated agents will be required to hit the ground running with their assigned field agents for additional on the job training for the next six months.”

The 23 new agents are:

Zachary Allen, of Prairieville, assigned to Ascension Parish
Javier Bazaldua, of Plaquemine, assigned to Southern Strike Force
Jonathan Boudreaux, of Raceland, assigned to Plaquemines Parish
Anthony Corner, of Duson, assigned to Plaquemines Parish
Seth Courtney, of Hammond, assigned to East Feliciana Parish
Cameron Densmore, of Farmerville, assigned to Avoyelles Parish
Dylan Egan, of Covington, assigned to Vermillion Parish
Jeremiah Fletcher, of Bentley, assigned to Sabine Parish
Thomas Forehand, of Metairie, assigned to Plaquemines Parish
Justin Greer, of Minden, assigned to Red River Parish
Charley Hawkes, of Jena, assigned to Natchitoches Parish
Richard Heinold, of Highland, Illinois, assigned to St. Bernard Parish
Amanda LeBlanc, of Lafayette, assigned to Cameron Parish
Zachary Meche, of Church Point, assigned to Jefferson Davis Parish
Michael Meserole, of Bossier City, assigned to Bossier Parish
Jonathan Morrison, of Houma, assigned to Southern Strike Force
Jacob Neal, of Deville, assigned to Natchitoches Parish
Harvey Pearce, of Noble, assigned to Sabine Parish
Matthew Perkins, of Lafayette, assigned to Catahoula Parish
Gerald Sander, of Amite, assigned to St. James Parish
James Smith, of Hornbeck, assigned to Sabine Parish
Michael Treadway, of Lake Charles, assigned to Calcasieu Parish
Jeremy Triplett, of Little Rock, Ark., assigned to Desoto Parish

During the graduation ceremony, Pearce received the firearms award given for the best marksman in the class.  Pearce also received the physical training award for being the most fit.  Forehand received the academic award for having the highest grades.  Pearce won the overall award, which is a cumulative score from the firearms, academic and physical training categories.

At the academy, cadets train to enforce the state's recreational boating laws, the state and federal wildlife and fisheries laws and general law enforcement work on the state's many wildlife management areas.  The academy also covers general law enforcement training equal to that of other state law enforcement officers.

The graduating agents fill vacancies in LDWF’s Enforcement Division and will be assigned to a field-training officer for their first six months of duty.  Now part of the agency’s commissioned officer staff, the agents will join the ranks of those patrolling land and water to primarily detect game, fish and boating law violations.  These duties require travel into Louisiana's forests, swamps, fields, streams, bayous, lakes, marshlands, the Gulf of Mexico and on the state roadway system.

202 Boaters Certified During "Boating Education Lagniappe Day"

Release Date: 04/24/2017

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) certified 202 boaters statewide after their seventh annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on April 22.

Boating Education Lagniappe Day was at nine locations across the state and consisted of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

The NASBLA safe boating certification is mandatory for anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 who wants to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.

The NASBLA approved course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements.  The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more.  Each student received that completed the course was issued a vessel operators certification card.

To register for a future boating education class please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses and follow the links to register.

Below was the list of class locations for lagniappe day:

Webster Parish
LDWF Region 1 Office
9961 Hwy. 80
Minden, LA 71055
Sponsors included the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association (LWAA), Coca-Cola of Minden, McDonald’s, Burger King, Sonic, Raising Cane’s, and Buffalo Wild Wings.

Ouachita Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
111 Constitution Dr.
West Monroe, LA 71292
Sponsors included Academy Sports and Outdoors and Johnny’s Pizza House.

Rapides Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
3205 S MacArthur Dr.
Alexandria, LA 71301
Sponsors included Academy Sports and Outdoors

St. Martin Parish
1015 Amy St (next to the Henderson town hall)
Henderson, LA 70517
Sponsors included LWAA

Beauregard Parish
First Baptist Church of Deridder
2030 US-171
DeRidder, LA 70634
Sponsors included Beauregard Chapter of Whitetails Unlimited

Lafourche Parish
Galliano Fire Station District 3
1762 West Main St
Galliano, LA 70354
Sponsors included Renovation Hardware in Cut Off

Tangipahoa Parish
Manchac Fire Department
30221 US-51
Akers, LA 70421
Sponsors included Reno Seafood and Manchac Boat Club

Livingston Parish
Bass Pro Shop of Denham Springs
175 Bass Pro Blvd
Denham Springs, LA 70726
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will be teaching this class.
Sponsors included Bass Pro Shop of Denham Springs

St. Tammany Parish
St. Tammany Parish Library Madisonville Branch
1123 Main St
Madisonville, LA 70447
Sponsors included LWAA and Raising Canes.

St. Bernard Parish Man Sentenced For Oyster Violations

Release Date: 04/24/2017

A St. Bernard parish man pled guilty to oyster violations in St. Bernard Parish Court on April 20.

Judge Kirk Vaughn accepted the guilty plea from Joshua C. Alfonso, 30, and sentenced him to pay a $950 fine plus court costs.  Alfonso pled guilty to taking oysters from an unapproved polluted area as set by the Department of Health and Hospitals.

Since this is Alfonso’s second offense, his oyster harvester license will also be revoked for three years.  He is also forbidden to be on a vessel possessing oysters or processing oysters for three years.  Alfonso’s dredge that was seized by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) agents will be forfeited to the state.

The guilty plea stems a citation Alfonso received from LDWF agents on Sept. 9, 2016 for harvesting oysters from a polluted area closed by DHH in Lake Robin on un-leased state water bottoms in St. Bernard Parish.

District Attorney Perry Nicosia’s office prosecuted the case for the state and Senior Agent Blaine Wagner was the case agent.

Agents Arrest Two People for Drug Possession

Release Date: 04/20/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents arrested two Roseland residents for alleged drug charges on April 17 in Tangipahoa Parish.

Agents arrested Willie I. Rhodus Jr., 42, and Shelia R. Hutchins, 46, for possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a firearm while in possession of illegal narcotics, and violating wildlife management area (WMA) regulations.

Agents were on patrol when they found the subjects in a vehicle riding in a restricted area on the Sandy Hollow WMA.  After further investigation, agents found the subjects in possession of methamphetamines, a pistol, and various drug paraphernalia.

Rhodus Jr. and Hutchins were arrested and booked into the Tangipahoa Parish Jail.

Rhodus Jr. was also cited for driving a vehicle with a suspended driver’s license and with a cancelled license plate.  Hutchins also has six outstanding arrest warrants for writing bad checks.

Possession of methamphetamine carries up to a $5,000 fine and five years in jail.

Possession of drug paraphernalia brings up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.  Possession of a firearm while in possession of illegal drugs carries up to a $10,000 fine and five to 10 years of prison.  Violating WMA regulations brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Toby Miller and Senior Agent Lee Davis.

Three Men Cited For Oyster Violations in Plaquemines Parish

Release Date: 04/19/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited three men for alleged oyster violations in Plaquemines Parish on April 18.

Agents cited Joseph J. Phillips, 44, Don P. Phillips, 57, and Charles J. Williams Jr., 24, all of Port Sulphur, for taking oysters from an unapproved polluted area and unlawfully taking oysters from state water bottoms.  The captain, Joseph Phillips, was also cited for a log book violation.

Agents cited the subjects after they were observed actively dredging for oysters in an area that was closed to pollution.  Agents returned the oysters to the water and seized the dredge.  Agents also put the vessel under a department seizure order.

Taking oysters from a polluted area brings a $900 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.

Unlawfully taking oysters from state water bottoms carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  A log book violation carries a $25 fine and up to 10 days in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Sgt. Villere Reggio and Sgt. Jason Gernados.

Four Men Cited for Fishing Violations in Jefferson Parish

Release Date: 04/19/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents citied four subjects for alleged fishing violations in two separate cases in Jefferson Parish on April 17.

Agents cited Arthur Borchgrevink, 71, from Metairie, and Rudy Mirandone Jr., 73, from Bay St. Louis, Miss., for taking over the daily limit of spotted sea trout.  Agents also cited Sidney Frechou III, 62, from Pearl River, for taking over the daily limit and possession limit of spotted sea trout, and John Dandry Jr., 60, from Metairie, for not possessing basic fishing and saltwater fishing licenses.

Agents received over the limit of sea trout complaints in Lake Pontchartrain and responded to the area.  Agents stopped a vessel with Borchgrevink and Mirandone Jr. and found them in possession of 43 spotted sea trout.  After further investigation, agents found an additional 59 spotted sea trout in their vehicle that had also been caught that morning.

Shortly thereafter agents stopped a vessel containing Frechou III and Dandry Jr. and found them in possession of 50 spotted sea trout.  Further investigation revealed that Dandry Jr. possessed an additional 52 spotted sea trout that were taken over a multiple day period of which he caught 27 in one of those days.  Frechou III also did not possess basic fishing and saltwater fishing licenses.

The daily bag limit for spotted sea trout is 25 per person for this area.  The possession limit of spotted seatrout is twice the daily bag limit on land, however no person shall be in possession of spotted sea trout over the daily bag limit in any one day or while fishing or while on the water.  This put Borchgrevink and Mirandone Jr. 52 over their daily limit.  It also put Dandry Jr. 27 spotted seatrout over his possession limit and two spotted seatrout over one of his daily limits.

Angling without basic fishing and saltwater fishing licenses each carry a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail for each offense.  Taking over the daily limit of spotted sea trout brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Taking over the possession limit of spotted sea trout carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

Borchgrevink and Mirandone Jr. may also face a civil restitution penalty totaling $1,506 for the illegally possessed fish.  Dandry Jr. may also face a civil restitution penalty totaling $782 for the illegally possessed fish.  Frechou III may also face a civil restitution penalty totaling $724 for the illegally possessed fish.

Agents involved in the case are Senior Agent Gary Pierce, Senior Agent Patrick Dempsey and Senior Agent Jeffrey Farmer.

Two Cited For Taking Closed Season Shrimp in St. Bernard Parish

Release Date: 04/17/2017

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agents cited two subjects for alleged closed season shrimping violations on April 17 in St. Bernard Parish.

Agents cited Ricky R. Robin, 63, of St. Bernard, and Jonathan Gould, 36, of Violet, for using trawls for shrimp during a closed shrimp season.  Agents observed the men actively shrimping in the Bay Eloi area around 6 a.m.

The Louisiana spring inshore shrimp season is currently closed in this area.  Agents seized 25 pounds of shrimp and returned them to the water.

Using trawls during a closed shrimp season carries a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Additionally, if convicted the men could be sentenced to harvest shrimp only from a vessel with an approved vessel monitoring system monitored by LDWF.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Jason Gernados and Sgt. Villere Reggio.

Venue Change at One of the Courses for Boating Education Lagniappe Day on April 22

Release Date: 04/12/2017

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) seventh annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on April 22 had to make a venue change at one of the nine locations.

The class originally scheduled for Cabela’s of Gonzales has been changed to Bass Pro Shop of Denham Springs.  All other eight original locations for this year’s Lagniappe Day remain unchanged.

LDWF urges the public to register quickly as most places have limited spaces available and registration is on a first come first serve basis.  To register please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses and follow the links to register for one of the nine April 22 classes.

During Boating Education Lagniappe Day, LDWF will provide instructors for the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, NASBLA boating education certification, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

Anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 must complete a NASBLA approved boating education course and carry proof of completion to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower.

The course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements.  The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more.  Completion of the course will result in the student being issued a vessel operators certification card.

Below is the list of class locations:

Webster Parish
LDWF Region 1 Office
9961 Hwy. 80
Minden, LA 71055
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association (LWAA), Coca-Cola of Minden, McDonald’s, Burger King, Sonic, Raising Cane’s, and Buffalo Wild Wings.

Ouachita Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
111 Constitution Dr.
West Monroe, LA 71292
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors and Johnny’s Pizza House.

Rapides Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
3205 S MacArthur Dr.
Alexandria, LA 71301
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors

St. Martin Parish
1015 Amy St (next to the Henderson town hall)
Henderson, LA 70517
Sponsors include LWAA

Beauregard Parish
First Baptist Church of Deridder
2030 US-171
DeRidder, LA 70634
Sponsors include Beauregard Chapter of Whitetails Unlimited

Lafourche Parish
Galliano Fire Station District 3
1762 West Main St
Galliano, LA 70354
Sponsors include Renovation Hardware in Cut Off

Tangipahoa Parish
Manchac Fire Department
30221 US-51
Akers, LA 70421
Sponsors include Reno Seafood and Manchac Boat Club

Livingston Parish
Bass Pro Shop of Denham Springs
175 Bass Pro Blvd
Denham Springs, LA 70726
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will be teaching this class.
Sponsors include Bass Pro Shop of Denham Springs

St. Tammany Parish
St. Tammany Parish Library Madisonville Branch
1123 Main St
Madisonville, LA 70447
Sponsors include LWAA and Raising Canes.

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