Lt. Applegate received a cell phone call
from an off-duty Hunterdon County Park Ranger on the Saturday of Six-Day
Firearm deer season. The Ranger claimed that he heard an early shot come from
a farm adjacent to where he was hunting in Raritan Township, Hunterdon County.
Officer Paey and Lt. Applegate responded to the area, and found two hunters
walking out of the woods dragging a deer. Neither hunter was wearing any
hunter orange, the harvest report for the deer was not completed, and they were
within 450 feet of four residences with loaded shotguns. Two more vehicles
then pulled up, and both had deer in them that did not have harvest reports
completed for them. While Officer Paey was issuing summonses to the hunters,
Lt. Applegate inspected another hunter exiting the woods, who claimed that he
had not fired his shotgun that morning. When Lt. Applegate inspected the gun,
there was fresh, wet blood on the barrel of the gun. The man then admitted
that he had shot a fox earlier in the morning, 15 minutes before legal hunting
hours and had poked it with the barrel of his gun. Summonses were issued for
safety zone violations, possession of deer without completing harvest reports,
no orange, and taking a fox before legal hunting hours.
Officer Wren investigated three deer
that were reported simultaneously as shotgun kills on the automated deer
reporting system on a day when shotgun season was closed. After speaking to
the hunter who registered the deer, Officer Wren was directed to talk to
another person who was reportedly butchering the deer. Once he made contact
with the butcher, the butcher ended up admitting that he had actually shot all
three of the deer at one time with his crossbow in a zone that he did not have
a permit for. He then had his friend register the deer for him on the
automated check system. Summonses were issued for killing over the bag limit,
possession of deer without a completed harvest report, registering deer under
false information and interference.
Officer Wren investigated another case
involving three deer that were reported simultaneously on the automated deer
reporting system, this time with dates of kill that were days and weeks earlier
than when they were reported. When Officer Wren interviewed the hunter, he did
not have any harvest reports completed, and one of the deer was killed at a
time when the hunter did not have a valid license. Summonses were issued for
failure to complete harvest report, hunting without a license and failure to
register deer on day of kill.
Officer Paey responded to a complaint of
a dog entangled in a snare on a farm in Franklin Township Hunterdon County.
When he arrived at the farm, the trapper, who had been advised of the complaint
by the farm manager, was in the process of removing illegal, uncovered baits
that he had near his traps. The trapper also had purchased his 2014 license
after he had found out Officer Paey was investigating the case. Summonses were
issued for trapping without a license and setting traps in an illegally baited
Officer Holmes and Lt. Applegate
responded to an OGT complaint of illegal fishing in the Trout Conservation Area
of the Pequest River, in Liberty Township, Warren County, on a Sunday during
December. The officers were able to conduct surveillance of the fishermen in
question and apprehended two for fishing without licenses and one for
possession of trout without a valid trout stamp.
Officer Paey followed up on a citizen
complaint to the State Police about a man seen by his neighbor attempting to
run deer down with his vehicle in a field. When Officer Paey questioned the
man about his actions, be became very agitated and confirmed that he was
attempting to run the deer over with his truck because they were defecating in
his field and his dog was rolling in the feces. A summons was issued for
illegally pursuing deer with a motor vehicle.
Officer Holmes was patrolling Mansfield
Township, Warren County on a weekday during the Permit Shotgun Deer season when
he observed a vehicle parked along the roadway. It was just after sunset, so
he decided to wait for the hunter to exit the field. Just before the close of
legal hunting hours, Officer Holmes heard two shots come from a field near his
location. About 20 minutes later, a hunter exited the field carrying an
unplugged shotgun. Officer Holmes asked him if he had been successful during
hunting, and the hunter stated that he had been out deer hunting, and then took
shots at a couple of geese on his way out. Though the hunter did have the
proper documents for waterfowl and deer hunting, he also had shot shells in his
possession for both forms of hunting. Summonses were issued for possession of
an unplugged shotgun, possession of illegal ammunition for waterfowl hunting,
and attempt to take waterfowl after legal
CO Ziegler and Lt. Sutton responded to a
residence in Lafayette Twp., Sussex County, to investigate an individual who
registered a deer with his permit bow buck tag, in a zone which he did not have
a valid permit. An interview of the suspect and inspection of the deer revealed
that the 8-point buck had been shot with a 7mm rifle on the previous evening.
Summonses were issued for "Did take a deer with a rifle", "Did hunt deer with
an illegal missile", "Did possess a deer taken in an illegal manner", and "Did
fail to register a deer by 7pm on day of harvest".
CO's Ziegler and Ocampo responded to a
trespass complaint at a mobile home park in Vernon Twp., Sussex County. The
complainant advised that they had witnessed a former employee shoot a deer with
a shotgun within the mobile home park. Further investigation revealed that the
suspect had discharged his shotgun within 450 feet of multiple residences and
that he had registered the deer as being harvested with a bow and arrow.
Summonses were issued for "Did hunt deer during permit shotgun season without a
valid permit", "Did fail to properly register a deer" and "Did possess a loaded
firearm within 450 feet of an occupied dwelling".
Lt. Sutton received a call from a NJ
State Trooper advising that he had witnessed several individuals doing a "deer
drive" at the Pequest Wildlife Management Area in Mansfield Twp., Warren
County. He advised that one of the individuals had shot a deer very close to
the roadway and he stopped to check the hunter's license. Upon seeing the Troop
car, the man began to flee but stopped when instructed by the Trooper. Lt.
Sutton and CO Ziegler responded to the scene and further investigation revealed
that the man did not have a valid hunting license or Zone 8 Shotgun Permit and
had previously purchased resident hunting licenses although he was a resident
of the State of Washington. The rest of the hunting party was inspected and
more violations were discovered. Summonses were issued for "Did hunt without a
valid 2014 Firearm Hunting License"," Did hunt during permit shotgun season
without a valid permit", "Did wrongfully procure a resident Hunting License"
and "Did fail to complete white tailed deer Harvest Report immediately upon
killing". A records check on the following day also revealed that the two (2)
individuals who had harvested deer, had not registered the by 7pm as required.
Additional summonses were issued accordingly.
CO Ocampo and Lt. Sutton investigated a
deer that was reported as harvested with a muzzleloader, on the day after the
season had closed in DMZ 2. Records also indicated that the man had purchased
his 2014 Firearms Hunting License, one (1) hour before reporting the deer. An
interview of the hunter revealed that the deer had been killed three (3) days
prior to the date of report and that he did not have a valid license when he
killed it. The man advised that the only reason he reported the deer was
because his taxidermist would not take the deer without a confirmation number.
The antlers of the large 8-point buck were seized from the taxidermist and
summonses were issued for "Did hunt without a valid 2014 Firearm Hunting
License" and "Did fail to register a deer by 7pm on day of harvest".
Lt. Sutton investigated two (2)
individuals who registered bucks with their "Permit Bow Buck Tag" on the day
after the season closed. An interview of the first individual revealed that the
8-point buck had been killed several weeks earlier and he waited until the end
of the season to report it, just in case he killed something bigger. A summons
for "Did fail to report a white tailed deer by 7pm of day of harvest". An
interview with the second individual revealed that he had not even killed a
deer. He advised that he is part of the Randolph Twp. Municipal hunting program
and the program requires that hunters harvest three (3) deer per season. The
man had recently had knee surgery and could not get out hunting, therefore he
registered a deer to make it seem as though he fulfilled his requirements to
stay in the program. A summons was issued for "Did register a deer that he did
CO Ocampo investigated information
received through a Confidential Informant regarding several individuals who had
photographs of deer they had killed, posted on social media websites. The
investigation resulted in three (3) individuals being charged with "Did fail to
register a deer by 7pm on day of harvest".
CO Ocampo investigated a deer that had
been brought in to a local butcher shop. The deer was registered as a "doe" via
the Automated Harvest Report System, although the deer had freshly broken
antlers. An interview with the hunter revealed that he had broken the six (6)
inch spikes off of the deer because he did not purchase a "permit shotgun buck tag".
Summonses were issued for "Did take an antlered deer without a valid buck
permit", "Did fail to properly register a deer" and "Did mutilate the antlers
of a white tailed deer".
Mascio received a call from an informant regarding deer hunters trespassing on
a nursery in Robbinsville, Mercer County. When Officer Mascio arrived, only
one hunter was still hunting in the nursery. When he approached the hunter, he
observed the man stumbling and having a difficult time standing. The man
smelled heavily of alcohol and was slurring his speech. Officer Mascio asked
the hunter how much alcohol he had consumed and was told two beers. He also
asked the man if he was diabetic or on any medications, which the man replied
he was not. Officer Mascio had the man perform a field sobriety test, which he
failed. Robbinsville PD arrived on scene shortly after Officer Mascio. The
hunter was taken to the police department and put on the Breathalyzer, where he
blew a ".158". Officer Mascio charged the man with gunning under the
influence, interference and hunting without a valid shotgun permit. He was
unable to charge the hunter for trespassing because the property was not
Lacroix was checking pheasant hunters on the Assunpink WMA when she observed a
pickup truck with four deer racks strapped to the roof racks. When the
registered owner returned to his truck, Lt. Lacroix and CO McManus questioned
him regarding the racks. The man stated that he had seen someone on the TV
show, Duck Dynasty strap deer antlers to his truck. He decided it looked cool,
so he put antlers on his truck. The man could not provide any seals or
confirmation numbers for the racks. A check of the deer check database showed
that the man had only checked in a button buck and a doe since 2007. Four
summonses for possession of unregistered deer parts were issued to the man.
The man recently appeared in court and pled guilty to all four summonses.
Lacroix was patrolling in Mansfield Township, Burlington County during the
early afternoon on Christmas Eve when she observed several goose hunters
setting up in a corn field. She took up a position to watch the hunters a
short distance away. She watched the hunters wait as small flocks of geese
kept landing in the field in front of them. After close to a hundred geese
were feeding in front of them, the hunters finally opened fire on the flock.
Realizing that the hunters were hunting very unethically, she decided to wait
them out to see if they would shoot over the limit or hunt late. The hunters
quit just before legal hours ended and Lt. Lacroix approached them for
inspection. The three hunters appeared startled as she approached. The two
adults and one juvenile had shot five geese between them. However, when she
asked to see their licenses and stamps, the hunters admitted that they did not
have firearm licenses, Federal or State waterfowl stamps, or HIP numbers. The
juvenile had taken a hunter education course but had never obtained his youth
license. When asked why they didn't have licenses, they stated that they "just
had not gotten around to getting them yet." The adults were issued four
summonses each for failure to have any of the required paperwork. The juvenile
was issued a written warning for hunting without a license.
Martiak received an OGT complaint regarding a father and son residing in South
Plainfield who had killed numerous deer this hunting season. Officer Martiak
responded to the address given and observed blood in the back of two pickup
trucks in the driveway and what appeared to be deer meat in one of the trucks.
He met with the father and adult son who voluntarily allowed Officer Martiak to
look in their garage. An antlered white-tailed deer was hanging in the garage
and there were numerous deer heads and racks on the walls. The son admitted to
shooting the hanging buck the night before and not reporting it. He also
admitted to shooting a doe a few days earlier without a permit (the meat in the
pickup truck). Upon questioning, both the father and son stated that most of
the deer heads and antlers were from road kills. Officer Martiak seized over
20 of the deer heads. Several of the heads were found to be legal after
checking back through the last few years of the deer database. Ultimately, 19
summonses were issued to the men. The father received two summonses for
possession of unregistered deer parts and the son received 16 summonses for
possession of unregistered deer parts and one summons for hunting without a
shotgun permit. During questioning, the father stated that they used a
taxidermist, possibly located in Somerset County. He only knew the taxidermist
by his first name and claimed he didn't remember exactly where he was located.
Going through her file of taxidermists, Lt. Lacroix found one with the same
first name and located in the same general area. Utilizing the Automated
Harvest Report System and Google, she was able to locate the taxidermist; he
was in Hillsborough, Somerset County. CO's Martiak, Mascio and Wren inspected
the taxidermist at his place of business. A number of violations were found.
One large unregistered, white-tail deer rack in velvet was found that according
to the taxidermist belonged to the younger of the two men in South Plainfield.
An additional summons for possession of an unregistered deer was issued to that
son. Officer Mascio contacted two men after finding two deer heads that did
not have confirmation numbers. Both men admitted to killing a deer without a
hunting license. Officer Mascio will be charging those two men. Additional
charges to the taxidermist and other clients will be issued by Officer Wren.
Staff from the
deer project contacted the Central Region Office regarding a bow hunter who
took two antlered deer during the 2013 Permit Bow Season. The hunter
registered both of them using the Automated Harvest Report System. Lt.
Szulecki went to the hunter's residence, but was advised by a family member
that the hunter no longer lived there. He was given the hunter's new address
and phone number. Lt. Szulecki then went to this new address and when he
arrived the hunter was waiting for him. After a brief interview the hunter
admitted to taking two antlered deer during the permit bow season. The hunter
said that he had taken the second set of antlers to the taxidermist. The
following day CO McManus seized the antlers from the taxidermist. The hunter
was issued a summons for taking a second antlered deer during the permit bow
McManus received a call from a hunter informing him that there were four wheel
drive trucks operating off road at Turkey Swamp WMA. CO McManus immediately
responded to the location. The suspects fled the when they saw CO McManus
approaching them on foot through a wooded area. The hunter had taken photos of
the trucks with his cell phone. He was able to provide CO McManus with a
registration for one of the trucks. CO McManus went to the home of the
registered owner of the vehicle. The owner admitted that he had been driving
the vehicle off road at Turkey Swamp. He was issued a summons for operating a
vehicle off the established roadway on a State WMA.
Summer CO McManus was contacted by a hunter who was complaining about a
taxidermist who he had paid to mount an antlered deer head. The hunter said
that he had been trying to contact the taxidermist, but that the taxidermist
would not return his calls. CO McManus tried repeatedly for months to contact
the taxidermist, but he was never home. Finally, after more than six months,
CO McManus was able to speak to him when he saw the taxidermist leave his home
and walk to his vehicle. When asked about the hunter's deer, the taxidermist
told CO McManus that he had lost all of his paperwork in Hurricane Sandy. He
took CO McManus into his garage where there were numerous sets of antlers. He
said he did not know which set of antlers belonged to the complainant. There
was a name tag with the hunter's name lying on top of a set of antlers but it
was not attached. When CO McManus advised the taxidermist that the hunter had
brought his deer head to him after Hurricane Sandy, he became very angry
and uncooperative. CO McManus seized seven sets of antlers because the
taxidermist did not have records of the owners and possession numbers for the
deer parts. The taxidermist was charged with failing to keep records and
possession of unregistered deer parts.
a Saturday in early January, CO Riviello was patrolling Great Bay Boulevard WMA
for waterfowl hunters. A group of three hunters returned to the dock and CO
Riviello conducted an inspection. One of the hunters had a 2014 Firearm
License, the other two had 2013 licenses. The two hunters told CO Riviello
that a clerk at a Dick's Sporting Goods told them that the licenses were still
good. The two were issued summonses for hunting without a valid firearm
Mutone received a complaint during the Fall Bow Season that hunters were
hunting within 450 feet of homes in Holiday City, Manchester Township. She
conducted a foot patrol of the area and located a blind in the woods. It was
located outside of the 450 foot safety zone from the homes. CO's Mutone and
Riviello repeatedly patrolled the area, but did not find anyone hunting from
the blind. During the Permit Shotgun Season CO Mutone continued her patrols
and finally found a hunter using it. The hunter was totally concealed from
view and did not have 200 square inches of hunter orange on top of the blind
visible from all sides. The hunter was issued a summons for the violation.
CO Toppin gave a waterfowl presentation
to Boy Scout Troop 45 in Mantua Township, Gloucester County. The presentation
discussed the Atlantic Flyway and duck identification.
CO Toppin received a complaint about
Penbryn Lake Wildlife Management Area from the Winslow Police Department in
Camden County. They investigated a motor vehicle entering the area after hours
and located a license plate at a gate that had been damaged. They went to the
registered owner's residence and attempted to interview the subject but he
would not admit to operating the vehicle because he was under the influence of
alcohol. The following day CO Toppin interviewed the suspect and obtained
admissions to operating a motor vehicle in a closed area, entering the
management area after hours and damaging the gate. CO Toppin charged the
driver for entering the area after hours and operating over a closed road.
CO's Toppin and Vazquez investigated an
unlawful dumping case in the Monroe Township, Gloucester County section of the
Winslow Wildlife Management Area. Three bags containing household trash led
them to a residence. During the interview, not to implicate her son and his
friend, the homeowner took full responsibility for the unlawful dumping since
her name and mail was located in the bags. CO Toppin issued one summons for
dumping on a wildlife management area.
CO's Toppin and Vazquez apprehended a
group of late waterfowl hunters along Big Timber Creek in Bellmawr Borough,
Camden County. They observed the group hunt one hour after sunset and return
to the ramp. The officers conducted and inspection and found that one hunter
did not have his federal duck stamp as well. Each of the hunters were issued a
summons for hunting waterfowl after sunset and one additional summons was
issued to the hunter that did not have a federal duck stamp. CO Toppin also
issued warnings for boating violations.
CO's Toppin and Vazquez responded to a
New Year's Day complaint from the Franklin Township Police Department in
Gloucester County. The officers interviewed a pair of hunters and during the
interview the hunters admitted to trespassing onto private property for the
purpose of hunting. One hunter also admitted to harvesting two antlered deer
during the permit archery season, one of which was entered as a doe. The
hunters were issued written warnings for trespass and the other hunter was
issued summonses for being over the limit of antlered deer, failing to
record/report a deer harvest and unlawfully possessing a deer.
CO Stites and Lt. Risher, along with the
Salem County Health Department, are investigating a possible pesticide case in
Carney's Point, Salem County. Dozens of red-winged black birds, brown-headed
cowbirds, and grackles were killed. Samples were taking and the investigation
CO Stites and Lt. Risher responded to a
complaint of trespass and hunters being too close to a residence in Upper
Pittsgrove Township, Salem County. CO Stites located the hunters back at a
barn on an adjoining piece of property where they were not trespassing or
hunting too close to a residence at that time. An inspection revealed one
hunter failed to complete his harvest tag for an antlered deer and continued to
hunt. Another hunter did not have a valid shotgun deer permit. CO Stites
issued summonses for failing to record a deer harvest properly and not having a
valid shotgun deer permit.
Conservation Officer Vazquez apprehended a hunter
without a hunting license in Hamilton Township, Atlantic County. Residents of
an upscale neighborhood reported seeing a hunter riding his bicycle in the
morning through that neighborhood. CO Vazquez was able to locate the hunter and
although he was not currently hunting, he admitted to hunting the previous
evening. A records check revealed that he did not possess a valid hunting
license and he was charged accordingly.
CO's Trembley and Kille investigated an
illegal otter trapping complaint in Greenwich Township, Cumberland County. CO
Trembley located an untagged otter set above water in the same location that CO
Stites had issued a warning to a local trapper several years ago. CO's Trembley
and Kille conducted an interview and the trapper confessed to setting an
untagged otter trap and setting it above water. The trapper was issued a
summons for setting an otter trap above water and using an untagged trap.
CO Kille investigated two deer
unlawfully taken in Oldmans Township, Salem County. CO Kille interviewed the
hunter and he admitted to not reporting the deer harvest as required by law.
CO Kille issued two summonses for failing to properly report the deer.
Lt. Risher was patrolling the Turkey
Point section of Down Township, Cumberland County when he observed a vehicle
partially blocking the road. Lt. Risher used the automated license system to
obtain the drivers information and determined the owner was a waterfowl
hunter. However, the owner did not have a valid NJ state stamp. CO Vazquez had
received a complaint from Trenton Dispatch about the vehicle blocking the small
boat ramp and had contacted the owner of the vehicle to have it removed. The
hunter told CO Vazquez that he would call his father to move his truck and that
he could not because he was out hunting. Lt. Risher observed him hunting and
waited for him return to the vehicle. Upon inspection, the hunter did not have
the required state waterfowl stamp. The hunter also admitted to shooting
several black ducks and not being able to retrieve them. Lt. Risher issued a
summons for hunting waterfowl without a state waterfowl stamp.
Lt. Risher conducted a waterfowl
inspection at a local ramp based along the Maurice River in Maurice River
Township, Cumberland County. During the inspection, Lt. Risher observed a pair
of black ducks in the boat. The hunter admitted to taking the additional black
duck because the pair landed in the decoys. Lt. Risher issued a summons for
taking over the daily bag limit of black ducks.
Lt. Risher was hunting waterfowl on the
Manumuskin River, a tributary of the Maurice River in Maurice River Township, Cumberland
County. A pair of hunters that set up next to him loaded their firearms prior
to legal hours and shot a few minutes earlier. Lt Risher continued to hunt and
observe their actions. Lt. Risher observed both hunters shoot over their daily
bag limits of black ducks and then enlisted the help of CO Fox. Two other
black ducks fell to the marsh and were never recovered by the hunters or Lt.
Risher. CO Fox responded to the ramp and inspected the hunters and found that
they possessed an extra black duck. CO Fox issued a summons for possessing
over the daily bag limit of black ducks.
Lt. Risher responded to an illegal
hunting complaint from the Franklin Township Police Department, Gloucester
County. They received a complaint from a resident that heard a gunshot on
Sunday morning during the winter archery season. Lt. Risher and Patrolman
Jernegan conducted a foot patrol in the area and located a deer stand with a
bait pile and two freshly killed turkeys. Due to the snow, the officers were
able to follow fresh foot prints and atv tracks to a neighboring house on the
next road. Lt. Risher and Officer Jernegan conducted an interview of the
homeowner. The hunter admitted to freshly baiting his deer stand to archery
hunt on Saturday evening. Upon inspection of his license, Lt. Risher
discovered the hunter did not have a valid 2014 archery license. The hunter
then admitted to hunting on Sunday with a firearm and to shooting both turkeys
near his stand. Lt. Risher charged the hunter with hunting deer on Sunday with
a firearm, hunting with a firearm during the archery season, hunting turkeys
during the closed season, hunting turkey without a valid turkey permit, two
counts of failing to tag or check a turkey, possession of illegal missiles to
take turkey and hunting turkey with the aid of bait.
CO's Fox and Vazquez investigated stolen
hunting equipment in Mullica Township, Atlantic County. They were walking the
property the equipment was stolen off of because they believed that the
perpetrator(s) were local and contacted two juveniles on an adjacent property.
Through field inquiries the two juveniles confessed to taking the
equipment in retaliation for their equipment being stolen. The juveniles
were given written warnings for hunter harassment and the two ladder stands, a
hang-on stand and a 50 gallon barrel of feed was returned to the complainant.
Acting on information provided by CO
Batten, CO Vazquez went to Vineland Taxidermy to seize a large buck that had
been harvested illegally on an expired deer depredation permit in Gloucester
County. When CO Vazquez interviewed the subjects involved they admitted
to shooting the buck at night with a shotgun and to subsequently tagging and
checking the deer as if it were a legal permit bow kill. The shooter and driver
were charged with unlawful possession of a whitetail deer, failing to tag or
check a whitetail deer properly, hunting out of season, hunting with the aid of
a motor vehicle, hunting with the aid of a light, possessing a loaded gun in a
motor vehicle and possessing an uncased gun in motor vehicle.
Acting on information provided by Lt.
Sutton, CO's Toppin and Vazquez made contact with a sportsman in Folsom,
Atlantic County who had checked a buck at 9:45 am; only 30 minutes after he had
purchased his 2014 bow license. During an interview the subject admitted
to taking the deer at 7:30 am prior to purchasing his hunting license.
The antlers were seized and summonses were issued for the unlawful
possession of the deer and hunting without a valid license.
Acting on information provided by a
concerned citizen, Lt. Risher and CO Vazquez responded to the Newtonville
section of Buena Vista Township, Atlantic County. They were able to
locate a hunter who had just come out of the woods who was in possession of a shotgun
and 00 buckshot shells in a zone with no open shotgun deer seasons. The
sportsman stated that he was hunting fox and took them back to his tree stand.
Once there they located corn and a mineral block used as deer bait. The
sportsman was charged with hunting deer out of season, hunting in manner not
prescribed by code and for possessing an illegal missile.
Lt. Risher and CO Fox responded to a
house shooting in Deerfield Township, Cumberland County. They received the
complaint from the State Police four days after they responded to the initial
call and were unsuccessful at locating a suspect. A single pellet of buckshot
entered the home through a window and lodged in the blinds. A baited tree
stand was located in a wooded area behind the home and a search warrant was
obtained to remove and view evidence from a camera at the baited area. No
additional evidence was gathered from the camera and officers continue to
canvas the area looking for possible suspects.
On November 3, 2013 Conservation
Officers Klitz and Woerner were fishing undercover on the Barnegat Light Jetty,
in Barnegat Light, Ocean County. Officers Klitz and Woerner observed a group
of individuals keeping over the limit blackfish and filleting them while they
continued to fish. As the group exited the jetty to return to the parking
area, they immediately split into two smaller groups. CO Woerner followed
one group back to the parking area where CO Soell had been waiting. The
individuals were inspected with no violations found. CO Klitz trailed the
other group along the water's edge close to the western entrance of the parking
area. As the group neared the parking area, CO Klitz observed an individual
with a bag of fillets hang it on the fence near one of the small jetties. CO
Klitz then walked past the individuals and came out into the parking area. CO
Soell inspected CO Klitz at this time and he advised CO Soell about the bag of
fillets that had just been hung on the fence. CO Soell then inspected the
individuals in the second group. The individuals possessed their legal limit
of blackfish (1 per person). CO Soell then retrieved the bag from the fence
and spoke to the individual who had hung it there. He admitted that the six
fillets and one whole fish in the bag were his. The individual was charged
with possessing four blackfish over the limit and six parts of mutilated fish.
On January 6, the individual plead guilty to the charges and paid penalties and
court costs totaling $366.00.
On December 27th, CO Klitz
was on patrol in the area of the Shark River in Monmouth County. While on
patrol CO Klitz observed a white van with a roof top refrigeration unit parked
in the Belmar Marina. The van had pulled up to a party fishing vessel moored
at the dock. CO Klitz moved into position to better view the activities taking
place. After observing the men load a crate into the back of the van, CO Klitz
moved in to speak with the individuals. It was determined that two of the
three males present were deck-hands of the party fishing vessel. These
individuals were in the process of selling a total of 72 live tautog to an
individual associated with a north Jersey seafood market. A total of twenty
three summonses were issued to these three men along with the vessel's captain
and owner. The charges included; possession of sub legal tautog, possession of
tautog over the daily limit, failure to keep accurate records, sale of tautog
without a New Jersey Non-Directed Tautog Permit and the sale/purchase of
illegally possessed wildlife.
On December 21, 2013 CO Petruccelli
inspected an otter trawl vessel in Sea Isle City. The vessel primarily targets
skates to supply local lobster pot vessels with bait. During the inspection CO
Petruccelli found six summer flounder concealed within a stack of empty fish
totes. Both the directed and by-catch commercial season for summer founder was
closed. CO Petruccelli seized the summer flounder and issued summonses to the
captain and mate for interference with the duties of a conservation officer.
In addition to the summonses, a written warning was issued for landing summer
flounder during the closed season.