Conservation Officer Report: 6/3/19

Courtesy of Joe Albert and the Minnesota DNR:

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District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on Lake of the Woods. A calf depredation was
investigated near Lake Bronson. A district meeting and training was attended at Thief River
Falls, and an arson was investigated near Grygla. Enforcement action was taken for operating an
unregistered ATV with two small children with no helmets.
CO Eric Benjamin (Warroad North) worked OHV, AIS, boat and water, and angling
enforcement. Taking advantage of the weather, ATV enthusiasts took to the forest this past
weekend to enjoy the trails and make some memories. Benjamin strongly suggests people read
the regulations booklet before heading out onto public lands with their ATVs. This will help
ensure good memories and drastically reduce your chances of violating the law. Enforcement
action taken this past week included transporting walleye fillets without the required patch of
skin, possessing an overlimit of walleyes/sauger, ATV passenger under 18 not wearing a helmet,
open container, littering, operating an ATV in an area with limitations, operating an unregistered
ATV, operating an ATV without safety certification, illegal snorkel device on an ATV and
failure to submit the required bear-tooth sample.
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls West) worked an ATV enforcement detail in the
Beltrami Island State Forest with CO Benjamin. The nice weather brought ATV riders out in
force. Although it was a bit dusty, many people commented on how nice it was to be out in
decent weather. Enforcement action for the week included no ATV registration, no ATV safety
training, no helmet on a juvenile on an ATV, open alcohol container on an ATV, operating an
ATV where prohibited, no ATV lights when required, no angling license, and child restraint
CO Tony Elwell (Thief River Falls East) spent time this past week working boating and angling
enforcement around the area. He also found many “baby” animals. Elwell just happened to be in
the right place at the right time when he noticed a brand new white-tailed deer fawn stumbling
across a street in Thief River Falls. People are reminded to leave fledgling birds, fawns and other


critters alone when they find them. Their mothers are nearby and will take care of them.
Enforcement action for the week included angling license violations, taking northern pike in the
restricted slot size, and watercraft-registration violations.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck South) reports working AIS enforcement, boating and
angling activity on special regulation lakes throughout the week. Time was spent patrolling area
ATV trails and attending a district meeting and training.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Blackduck North) reports fishing success has increased with the more
stable weather patterns. Time was spent investigating commercial violations, working ATV
activity, and patrolling Upper Red Lake for fishing activity.
CO Hannah Mishler (Baudette East) spent time patrolling in the BWCA with another officer. A
district meeting was attended.
Baudette West – vacant.
Warroad South – vacant.
Karlstad – vacant.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports instructing at the new CO Academy at Camp Ripley.
Time was also spent checking anglers and watercraft operators. A leech-trapping complaint was
CO Tim Gray (Bagley) finished commercial pilot training.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) worked angling and boating activity on area lakes. Anglers
continue to have good success with catching walleyes and the area crappie bite has started
picking up. Vollbrecht worked a boat and water detail on Upper Red Lake. He found most
anglers doing well, with multiple walleye limits observed.
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports checking anglers and boaters with focused attention paid to
AIS enforcement. Compliance was good with regard to AIS inspections. Water temperatures are
rising and panfish have become more active. TIPs of possible overlimits and double-tripping
were investigated. A concerned caller from the Alexandria area was provided advice about a
small bear in her yard.  It was not doing anything other than looking at their hummingbird
feeders. Vinton advised her to pull in the bird feeders, trash can and BBQ grill and any other
sources of food that might entice it to hang around. Once those things are done the young bear
should move on.
CO Jake Swedberg (Detroit Lakes) spent the week working fishing and recreational boaters.
Time was also spent meeting with local AIS inspectors and going over reports of potential


violations. Swedberg reminds people that just because your lift or boat is going into the same
lake it came out of does not mean you can leave dead zebra mussels on it.
CO Al Peterson (Osage) followed up on ongoing cases, assisted with a trapping case, worked
with nuisance beaver trappers and answered questions on laws relating to protecting livestock.
CO Steve Chihak (Moorhead) spent the week working fishing, AIS and ATV enforcement. Time
was also spent responding to miscellaneous wildlife complaints.
CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) spent time on angling and boating activity. Patrol was conducted
for ATV and off-road vehicle regulation compliance. Information was provided about ATV
safety certification. Leeching complaints and activity were worked. Calls of an injured fawn and
dead loon were received.
CO Bill Landmark (Pelican Rapids) spent the week checking anglers, boat and water safety, AIS,
and ATV activity in the area. He spent time following up on dock complaints, nuisance animal
complaints, and concerns over suspicious deaths of animals.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) reports fishing has improved with stable spring weather.
Boaters and anglers were checked and observed throughout the week. Richards responded to a
bowfishing boat swamped in the Ottertail River over the weekend. With extra weight in the boat
and a pretty fast current, the boat took on water rapidly and submerged. Luckily, the five people
on board were not injured in the incident. During the same timeframe, there was another report
of a bowfishing boat on another lake playing load music and disrupting residents on the lake.
With freedoms come responsibility and hopefully some courtesy for others. Violations addressed
were related to fishing, turkey hunting, minnow trapping, and possessing goose goslings. People
are reminded to leave young-of-the-year wildlife alone and not to handle them.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) monitored invasive species on boats this past week and handled
ATV complaints. Fishing has picked up in the area with a good panfish bite. Bear sightings and
nuisance beaver permits were handled.
CO Andrew Goodman (Elbow Lake) reports checking a fair number of anglers and bowfishers.
Water temperatures continue to trend upward but are still not warm enough to see any tubers or
skiers on area lakes. Time was spent investigating an overlimit complaint and issuing minnow
and beaver permits.
CO Shane Osbourne (Evansville) checked anglers, ATV riders and boaters. Several violations of
no helmets on passengers under 18 were encountered. Several lakes in the area are experiencing
high water and one lake has a no-wake regulation within 150 feet of shore. Please be mindful of
your wake.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) spent time monitoring anglers this past week, with lots having
good success for walleyes and panfish. Evening angling activity is high on the water with a few


boaters reminded to turn on navigation lights at sunset. Anglers were cited for no fishing license
and for angling with an invalid license, as the spouse on their combination license was actually
just a girlfriend. A concerned citizen called in a bowfisher after watching him throw about 20
carp from the bed of his truck into the ditch of a rural dirt road. A citation was issued.
CO Brian Holt (Osakis) worked fishing and recreational vehicle activity during the week. Time
was also spent checking bowfishers and the illegal dumping of rough fish, which continues to be
a problem. Holt worked with the local sheriff’s office water patrol checking boat and water
safety in the Osakis area. Enforcement activity related to boating violations.
CO Dan Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week concentrated on
checking anglers and boaters and monitoring AIS law compliance. Additional time was spent
checking commercial minnow trappers, handling injured-animal calls, and speaking to a group of
youth about boat and water safety at the annual Minnewaska Area Kids Day.
Morris – vacant.
Wheaton – vacant.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Jacqueline Hughes (Longville) report checking multiple anglers. More anglers have been
reporting a better bite in recent weeks. She also checked multiple ATVs and spoke at an ATV
safety class. Hughes has also received calls regarding nuisance beavers.

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) continued work on the gill-netting case in Park Rapids from the
prior weekend. Time was also spent checking on three separate waters cases that involved filling
or amending a lakeshore. Mathy also worked on Bear Committee items and checked anglers in
the area.
Lake George – vacant.
Park Rapids – vacant.
Walker – vacant.
Remer – vacant.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports weather has finally cooperated and anglers
were out taking advantage of it on Rainy Lake. Most people were reporting getting at least a few
fish to put in the live wells or on the stringers. Again, people are reminded to leave young
animals alone. Enforcement action for the week included fishing with extra lines, no angling
license in possession, and boat safety equipment violations. Kittelson also responded to a


medical assist where a person fell off a ladder and sustained upper leg and back injuries. The
individual was transported to the hospital by ambulance.
CO Shane Zavodnik (International Falls #2) spent time following up on a trapping case with CO
Slatinski. Zavodnik also worked with the Parks and Trails Division regarding topics with the
multi-use Blue Ox Trail. He and Slatinski also responded to a deer/vehicle collision that involved
a newly-born, orphaned fawn. The two COs determined that it mostly likely wouldn’t even have
survived the night if left on its own. The two COs were able to contact a rehabilitation center that
evening and it was transported that night. A few days later, a follow up was done and the deer
was found to be doing well.
CO John Slatinski (Ray) monitored boating safety, angling activity, invasive species compliance,
and ATV use. He worked with CO Zavodnik to close out a trapping investigation from this
spring. Slatinski fielded several calls regarding injured and abandoned animals along with
animals causing damage to property. Slatinski was involved with discussions surrounding safety
concerns and conditions of local trails impacted by beaver activity. Annual safety training and
administrative tasks rounded out the week.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) checked area lakes, monitored area forest roads, and checked public
access sites. Numerous beaver-related issues were dealt with. Boating activity was monitored
and equipment work was completed.
CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) spent time working ATV enforcement in complaint areas. There
were also complaints of illegal dumping and wetland violations, which are under investigation.

CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) taught species identification at the Conservation Officer Academy.
He also worked anglers, ATV riders, and a complaint of a shoreline alteration in the Aurora
station, which turned out to be a large area of shoreline excavation and aquatic plant removal.
Resource Protection Notifications were issued. Enforcement action was taken on multiple
angling-without-a-license offenses, no angling license in possession and a number of ATV

CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) noticed a significant increase in angling activity over the past week,
mostly thanks to more agreeable weather. With the increased activity, more anglers and boaters
neglected some of the basic requirements, primarily angling licenses, PFDs, and watercraft
registrations. Enforcement action was taken in all cases. Several area schools have let out for the
summer and many juveniles were stopped on ATVs for a wide variety of violations. Their
parents were advised that ATVs are not the babysitter.
Aurora – vacant.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) patrolled in and out of the BWCA throughout the week, working
primarily angling, boating, and ATV enforcement. One individual was contacted angling from a
houseboat a day before he had set his 72-hour angling license to become effective. Enforcement


action taken for the week included angling with an extra line, angling without a license, illegal-
length northern pike, using game fish for bait, no trout stamp, insufficient PFDs, failure to
comply with burning permit restrictions, and ATV violations.
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports angling success varied compared to earlier in the season.
Walleye success was low, and most anglers checked reported very little or no success. Trout
anglers had a great deal of success early in the week with the action tapering off. Violations
included angling without a license in possession, angling on a designated trout lake with no
stamp, and failure to display current watercraft registration.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked boating and invasive species enforcement activity this
past week. Summer weather finally arrived and water-related recreation was high. Murray
handled nuisance-bear complaints and investigated a complaint of illegal fishing activity.
Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license and OHM registration violations.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) cleaned up again after the same “parents behaving badly” as last
week – this time in a local WMA. She took reports of bears behaving badly (read: “behaving like
bears”) and of a young wolf visiting an area campground. Manning assisted COs Fagerman and
Wahlstrom and local volunteers with a firearms safety field day. Anyone interested in becoming
a DNR safety training volunteer can contact a local CO for information on the process.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked angling activity this past week. Time was spent
checking boaters on the water and at accesses. More flies than fish were caught this past week.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) reports going from the land of ice and snow to black flies in
about 60 seconds. Boat rides over the 55-degree water are about as cool as the below-average
fishing has been. Fagerman assisted with a firearms safety field day and took a complaint about
snowmobilers during the week. He also took a call from a person in Illinois who wants to come
to northern Minnesota to fish for rusty crayfish. A wildland arson case was also followed up on.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers and boaters and patrolled area ATV trails. He
handled calls about possible fishing overlimits, nuisance wildlife, angling in closed areas, illegal
minnow trapping, burning without a permit, and ATV trespass. Enforcement action was taken for
illegal-length fish and failure to obtain a burning permit.

CO Jayson Hansen (Big Fork) worked fishing and ATV enforcement. He answered wildlife-
related calls and patrolled campgrounds.

CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, attended training, investigated a wildland fire
and monitored OHV activity. The area angler success was good this past week. Enforcement
action was taken for license issues, possession of illegal-length fish and taking bait from infested

CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) spent time checking anglers this past week. She followed up on
some fishing complaints. She also worked a detail on Lake of the Woods. Enforcement action
was taken for angling and boating violations.

CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked angling activity in the area with some local lakes
slowly starting to pick up with some panfish action. Enforcement action was taken on multiple
individuals for having their drain plugs in their watercraft while on the roadway. Most of these
violations seen have been from out-of-state anglers unaware of the law. It serves as a good
reminder to look at each state’s regulations before you travel there to recreate.

CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) reports working angling, ATV, boating, and AIS enforcement
throughout the surrounding areas. Van Asch assisted with a wildfire investigation in Two
Harbors. Enforcement action was taken for no angling license in possession, transporting boats
with the plug in, and illegal-length northern pike.

CO Taylor Hochstein (Hill City) focused efforts on patrolling the area’s fishing and boating
activity. Warmer weather and a good fish bite brought lots of folks out to enjoy the lakes.
Violations included not having enough PFDs on board, expired registration, fishing in a closed
area, and on overlimit of crappies.

NE ATV officer – vacant.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) saw heavy boating and angling activity this past week. Anglers
were seeing some success with multiple species. A presentation about law changes and boating
safety was given to a lake association group. Enforcement action was taken for an overlimit of
fish, illegal-length walleye, insufficient PFDs and illegal OHM operation.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth East) spent many hours on area lakes conducting fishing and boating
enforcement. Many fish were measured and counted during the week. Violations encountered
included an overlimit and oversized fish. OHM and ATV enforcement was also worked, which
included violations of road right-of-way operation and registration issues. Duncan also assisted
local police departments and sheriff’s offices with calls for service.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) worked boating, angling, AIS, and OHV enforcement throughout
the week. Nuisance- and injured-animal complaints continue to be received. Most of these
complaints are beaver and bear issues. Preparation for a firearms safety class was completed.
Violations for various boating, angling, OHV, and AIS issues were encountered.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) worked ATV and boating activity in the area. Enforcement action
was taken for registration and equipment violations. Time was spent working aquatic invasive
species enforcement in the area, where enforcement action was taken for transporting watercraft
with drain plugs still in. Nuisance-bear calls were handled by educating homeowners to just
make sure they put away their garbage and bird feeders.


Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked ATV enforcement in the Duluth and Two
Harbors areas. Olson worked on equipment items for upcoming details. Reminder to leave
spotted fawns and other newborn wildlife alone and secure in place; several calls regarding this
topic were fielded during the week.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters. ATV complaints were
received, and training attended in Eveleth. Enforcement action was taken for OHM, ATV, and
angling violations.
Lake Superior Unit – vacant.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Chelsey Best (Crosslake) assisted with classes at the current CO Academy and helped out
with interviews for the next Academy. Best also worked on shoreline, beaver, bear and ATV
CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) reports activity this past week of giving presentations to students at
Riverside Elementary school in Brainerd on natural resources conservation and furbearing
animals. Area fishing activity was monitored, miscellaneous nuisance and injured baby wildlife-
related calls were responded to, and a detail was worked on Mille Lacs lake for boating and
fishing activity. Numerous contacts were made for miscellaneous boating registration and
equipment violations, and fishing without a license.
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) patrolled for all-terrain vehicle use and sport fishing activity.
Guida worked on an aquatic vegetation complaint on an area lake. A trapper was checked
attempting to remove nuisance beavers from a local municipality.
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) patrolled ATV and angling activity in her station. She assisted with
training for the sheriff’s office for ATV and AIS enforcement. Ladd also continued an
investigation where a trailer was left on state forest land. The trailer was far from road worthy
and full of trash, car parts and tires. She located where the trailer originated and eventually who
left it there. The suspect claimed he left it for someone else to have and that he was paying it
forward so hopefully some good fortune will come his way. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) worked boating and fishing enforcement throughout the
week. McGowan worked details on Upper Red Lake and Mille Lacs Lake. Enforcement action
was taken for several walleye overlimits and numerous boating violations.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (CCSRA) reports working anglers throughout the week and weekend. He
assisted other officers with putting on an ATV and AIS training for several local law
enforcement agencies. Time was spent following up on an illegal-camping complaint in the SRA
and patrol was done for illegal ATV use in the park. Several car-killed deer permits were issued
and many outdoor law-related questions were answered throughout the week and weekend.


CO Eric Sullivan (Pequot Lakes) continued to focus on angling and ATV activity. Sullivan
contacted one angler who said they were holding the rod while trolling and would give the rod to
their boat partner when they got a bite because they did not have a fishing license. The person
was cited for angling without a license. Other violations observed included illegal ATV
operation in the right of way, no life jacket, no navigation lights and failure to drain water-related
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked invasive species, angling and boating activity during the week.
Assistance was given the county and State Patrol with accidents, one of which resulted in a
motorcycle ending up in Mille Lacs Lake.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Ben Karon (Isle) spent many hours on an ATV this past week patrolling the Soo Line and
Red Top areas. Complaints have been received of unsafe operation in these areas. Remember to
be responsible and stay on trails. Time was also spent on area lakes checking anglers, boaters,
and informing people of AIS rules.
CO Ashley Whiteoak (Malmo) worked boating and ATV enforcement. Enforcement action was
taken for expired boat registration, boating without legal life jackets, boating without a fire
extinguisher, youth on an ATV without a helmet, operating an ATV without lights, operating an
ATV on a roadway, failure to display ATV registration, and expired ATV registration.
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) checked boaters and anglers and worked AIS enforcement
throughout the week. Enforcement action was taken when one angler decided to take up four
parking spaces at a public boat access rather than backing his boat trailer into one space. He
admitted he really had no good excuse. Speldrich responded to a call about an injured eagle,
followed up on wetland violations and answered ATV/OHM questions. She also responded to a
call of used motor oil dumped in a wetland adjacent to a lake. It was discovered that the “oil”
was just rotting vegetation creating an oil-slick appearance.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked the night fishing ban on Mille Lacs and continued to take
complaints on public access parking violations. The walleye bite was found to be very good with
some panfish activity just starting. ATV, invasive species, and turkey-season regulations were
also monitored. Numerous folks voiced opinions on a high bear population. Starr also assisted
with an eagle that was caught in a beaver trap.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) handled several nuisance-animal calls that included foxes
killing chickens and ducks and black bears knocking over garbage cans and tearing down bird
feeders. Homeowners had to be reminded that until natural food sources become available, bears
will be out searching for the easiest meal they can find and that usually means bird seed, dog
food and garbage. Time was also spent investigating gray wolf depredation of cattle complaints
and checking anglers on area lakes.


CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) patrolled Mille Lacs Lake and saw a fair number of successful
anglers catching walleyes. A lot of smallmouth bass catch and release was also seen. A car-killed
bear permit was issued and a phone call regarding a mountain lion was also handled.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Annette Kyllo (Pierz) spent time working with CO Karon on Mille Lacs Lake. Two
individuals were encountered with one walleye that was over 23 inches in their livewell as well
as five smallmouth bass that fell in the protected 17- to 21-inch slot. The individuals said they
didn’t want to take the bass home, but they were keeping them for photos. They were instructed
to take photos right away and then immediately release any protected-size fish. Enforcement
action was taken. Other common violations Kyllo encountered this past week were failure to
have enough wearable PFDs, throwable “seat cushion” style PFDs, and fire extinguishers on
board boats.
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week patrolling station lakes for angling
and boating activity. The Memorial Day holiday was worked with some anglers seen out trying
their luck, even with less-than-desirable weather. A Sauk Centre High School Trap Team
community event was attended. Silgjord had the opportunity to shoot with the team in a variety
of events and fun was had by all. Assistance was provided to the Stearns County Sheriff’s Office
with a domestic assault complaint. Assistance was also provided to the Sauk Centre Police
Department with a bear that wandered into city limits. Silgjord also provided law enforcement
support to DNR Wildlife staff conducting a prescribed burn on a local WMA.
CO Todd Vanderweyst (Paynesville) worked angling activity this past week. Panfish continue to
be on and off. Some anglers are catching a lot of bass. Another complaint about bowfishers
dumping carp was received.
CO Frank Rezac (St. Cloud) responded to injured-wildlife calls and answered questions about
regulations. Boaters and anglers were checked on area lakes and rivers. Enforcement contacts
were made for angling with two lines and watercraft equipment and registration violations.
CO Leah Kampa (Annandale) spent the past week working area lakes. Time was spent speaking
on a local radio station about boating safety, the northern pike North-Central Zone regulations
and how to properly measure fish. Reminder to anglers trying new lakes to read the regulation
booklet to verify if the lake has special regulations. Enforcement action for the week included
fishing without a license, failure to have a fire extinguisher on board, failure to have a throwable
flotation device on board and no angling license in possession.
CO Keith Bertram (Long Prairie) dealt with several calls about nuisance and aggressive bears
this past week. Most of the bear problems stemmed from bird feeders. Bertram advises area
residents to remove bird feeders until more food becomes available in the woods.
District 12 – Princeton area


CO Tony Musatov (Sauk Rapids) checked anglers and boaters. Violations were found for no
PFDs and no angling license. A dumping complaint was investigated. Aquatic invasive species
enforcement was worked.

CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) spent the week at Camp Ripley on an interview panel for new
hires. Calls were also taken about baby animals, boaters not following high-water ordinances,
and ATV complaints.

CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent time working ATVs. Krauel also spent time working anglers and
boat and water safety. Enforcement action was taken for PFD violations, watercraft registration,
no angling license and extra lines. An arrest was made for a warrant.

CO Blong Lor (Center City) spent the week working anglers, AIS, and boating safety, and
exploring his new station. Time was also spent investigating and responding to complaints. Lor
still has a lot of exploring to do to get better acclimated to his new station.

CO Nathan Benkofske (Milaca) reports checking boaters and anglers over the past week.
Enforcement action was taken for fishing without licenses, extra lines, and unattended lines.
Many animal-related complaints were also handled ranging from bears, to raccoons, to fawns.

CO Trent Seamans (Big Lake) focused enforcement efforts on anglers and boaters. Additional
time was spent handling miscellaneous wildlife-related complaints and patrolling state lands.
Enforcement action was taken for operating an off-highway motorcycle in a closed state forest,
failing to have PFDs onboard a watercraft, and operating a watercraft with expired registration.
Anglers were having success on panfish with the warmer weather.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO James Fogarty (Prior Lake) worked area lakes during a busy boating week. Education and
enforcement action were taken on angling without a license, angling with too many lines, expired
boat registration, no PFD on a watercraft, and failure to have a legal lifesaving device on board
watercraft. Fogarty took a report of an abandoned fawn. The fawn was located and appeared to
be in good shape. The reporting party was advised to leave the fawn alone because the doe was
most likely still in the area.
CO Arnaud Kpachavi (Mound) worked boat safety and angling activity during the week. In
addition to patrolling area lakes, he assisted in interviewing candidates interested in becoming
conservation officers. Enforcement action was taken for illegally taking migratory waterfowl out
of season, angling with multiple lines, angling license violations, and boat safety violations.
CO Brent Grewe (Minnetonka) spent the week checking anglers and monitoring boating
activity. Grewe received several questions about the wake restrictions on Lake Minnetonka and
advised people to go to the Lake Minnetonka Conservation District website for a current wake
restriction map. Violations this past week included no fishing license in possession and expired
boat registration.


CO Mike Lerchen (Bloomington) focused his efforts on boating safety and fishing enforcement.
Anglers were observed catching a variety of fish with the warming weather. Enforcement action
was taken for extra lines, no PFD, and registration issues.
CO Thephong Le (ELCOP) patrolled district lakes for fishing, boating, and AIS activities. Time
was spent conducting maintenance on issued equipment and assisting with transferring a vehicle
to Camp Ripley for Academy 19. Violations encountered included no fishing license and failure
to register a watercraft.
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) worked boating and fishing activities on the metro-area lakes and
rivers. He attended career day at the Hmong College Prep Academy in St. Paul and participated
with Asian youth fishing at Bald Eagle Lake in White Bear Lake. Lee also returned phone calls
from the Asian community on camping, fishing regulations, and youth firearms safety classes.
Violations detected were fishing without an angling license, no license in possession, and failure
to register a kayak longer than 10 feet.
CO Tim Maass (Osseo) worked area lakes and rivers checking boaters and anglers. Maass also
investigated an illegal-dumping complaint involving fish carcasses being dumped on private
property. Time was also spent answering several questions regarding nuisance animals.
Ft. Snelling – vacant.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Garrett Thomas (Eagan) spent time conducting boating and fishing patrol on lakes. He also
checked late-season turkey hunters and worked on numerous TIP calls. Thomas also rendered
assistance to multiple local agencies on calls relating to armed robbery and domestic abuse.
Enforcement action was taken on a variety of offenses including angling with extra lines, fishing
without a license, operating unlicensed watercraft, and failing to transfer a watercraft title.

CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) reports teaching the laws and ethics portion of a firearms safety
class in Forest Lake. Arntzen also spent time patrolling area lakes checking anglers and
watercraft users. Violations for the week included filling in a wetland, fishing without a license
and not having a license in possession.

CO Chris Tetrault (Maplewood) checked anglers during the week. Anglers reported mixed
success. He looked for compliance with aquatic invasive species laws. Follow up was conducted
regarding ongoing investigations.

CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) patrolled Anoka County for angling and boating activity. Water
levels remain high across the county with mixed success in fishing. Salzer also concentrated on
invasive species checks during the week. Enforcement action was taken for transporting invasive

CO Luke Gutzwiller (White Bear Lake) spent time working angling and recreational activity
throughout the week. Enforcement action was taken for transporting aquatic


macrophytes/Eurasian watermilfoil, watercraft and personal watercraft registration issues and
angling without a license. Gutzwiller spoke to one angler who successfully boated a 40-inch
muskie five minutes after fishing on the opener. It was his first time muskie fishing.

CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) spent the week monitoring boaters and anglers on the St Croix
River. Fishing continues to be very hit and miss with the high water. He also patrolled areas for
ongoing illegal ATV activity and patrolled area lakes with the sheriff’s office. Enforcement
action for the week included violating the slow/no wake rules, no fishing license and not having
required safety equipment on board a vessel.
Metro Officer – vacant.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Andrew Dirks (Worthington) spent time checking anglers, boaters and ATV riders
throughout the week.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) spent the week working fishing, boating, AIS, and ATV
enforcement. A good fish bite is going on for crappies, bass, and walleyes on multiple area lakes.
Recreational boating activity remains low as boaters wait for the water temperatures to rise.
Aquatic invasive species law compliance continues to be good. ATV operators are reminded that
it is illegal to operate ATVs on county or state highways unless the ATV is registered with an
agricultural sticker and being used for agricultural purposes.
CO Craig Miska (Ortonville) monitored AIS, angling, boating and OHV activity during the
week. Assistance was given to multiple agencies in regards to a drowning that occurred on Lac
qui Parle Lake.
Lake Benton – vacant.
Benson – vacant.
Montevideo – vacant.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Jeff Denz (Willmar-West) checked anglers and boaters. Denz also followed up on a concern
regarding excavation in public waters.
CO Shane Vernier (Willmar-East) worked boating and angling activity. He handled a burning
violation and followed up on AIS violations submitted by inspectors. Vernier also spoke at a
Prairie Woods Elementary School assembly.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) took calls regarding injured wildlife and fish-carcass litter. He
worked angling, boating, fishing, and invasive species activities. The bite for walleyes and
panfish was good across the area this past week.


CO Dustin Miller (Windom) reports that fishing and boating activity increased over the past
week with improving weather. Locally, success continues to be had by anglers for various
species. Numerous boating safety and sport fishing violations were encountered. Assistance was
given to the Cottonwood County Sheriff’s Office with a barricaded suspect related to a domestic
assault. A big thank you goes out to the Des Moines Valley MDHA Chapter and the Windom
High School Trap Team for the hard work put into planting trees at the Delft WMA to continue
improving local wildlife habitat.
CO Mike Gruhlke (Jackson) continued to concentrate on angling enforcement, aquatic invasive
species enforcement, and boat and water safety. Gruhlke noted that the Des Moines River is high
and continues to be out of its banks in various places. Lakes in the county are all high as well.
Some anglers are having luck by boat and by dock fishing with crappies and walleye being
CO Eric Schettler (Fairmont) checked anglers and boaters. Boaters were inspected and educated
on AIS requirements.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Tyler Lusignan (Faribault) reports checking anglers on local lakes and rivers. The fish bite
has not been very good. Anglers are having varying/slow success. There is a slow/no wake
ordinance in effect for Rice County due to high water.
CO Jamie VanThuyne (Mankato #1) focused on boating and AIS enforcement. VanThuyne also
checked anglers and assisted local agencies.
CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato #2) reports fishing and boating activity has been high this past
week with the nice weather. Assistance was given to a sheriff’s office in attempting to locate an
individual who was hiking and had a medical situation. ATV complaint areas were checked as
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) reports spending time on angling, boating, and AIS enforcement this
past week. Area lakes and rivers remain high. Angling success is intermittent. The bugs are out
in full force, with the gnats being especially bothersome at this time.
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) checked anglers, boaters, AIS activity, and ATV operators during
the past week. Multiple angling and ATV violations were encountered. Davis also patrolled state
parks, wildlife management areas, and waterfowl production areas.
CO Brent Ihnen (Waseca) patrolled his station this past week primarily for fishing and boating
activity. Additional time was spent monitoring AIS compliance around area lakes. Ihnen also
checked late-season turkey hunters.
CO Tony Flerlage (Spring Valley) spent time with a Ms. J’s science class, helping the students
appreciate all that outside has to offer and explaining the job of a CO. It was great to see their


presentations on Minnesota state parks. Illegal fires were checked. Unregistered ATVs are still
being encountered. Area trout streams are still full from the frequent rains.
CO Jeremy Henke (Albert Lea) worked angling, boating and AIS enforcement this past week.
Calls regarding fawns being left alone were taken. Fawns are normally left alone for long periods
of time. The mother is more than likely nearby and is caring for the young animal. Complaints of
snagging fish at the Fountain Lake Dam continue to come in; several citations have been issued.
High water has kept Freeborn County Lakes under a no-wake restriction. Please use idle speeds
until the restriction is lifted.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Brittany Hauser (Red Wing) spent the week patrolling for area angling and boating activity.
Assistance was provided to the Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office for a sailboat that had gotten
loose and landed itself at an area public access, where it blocked half of the boat ramp. Time was
also spent following up on multiple trespass cases.
CO Joel Heyn (Plainview) worked anglers and boaters during the week. Fishing success was
mixed with most people having some luck. Heyn also finished work on other cases.
CO Clint Fitzgerald (Rochester #2) reports the panfish bite has been heating up at most
reservoirs in the area. Many anglers checked were quickly approaching their limit. Fitzgerald
assisted Olmsted County with building searches following the report of a shooting south of
Byron. Enforcement activity for the week included taking fish without a license, overlimit of
crappies, unregistered watercraft and life jacket violations. Boaters are reminded that youths
under 10 must wear a life jacket while on a boat that is not tied to a dock or permanent mooring.
CO Kylan Hill (Zumbrota) reports handling multiple ATV violations revolving around juveniles.
Helmets were the main violation seen. Multiple anglers were contacted fishing without a license.
Hill observed two excited anglers land their first-ever walleye. Follow-up investigation was
completed for a bear hunter who failed to submit a tooth after harvesting a bear during the 2018
season. Assistance was given to Wabasha County with a motorcycle crash.
CO Tom Hemker (Winona) reports the high river and closed accesses has shifted the fishing
pressure to area lakes. He checked an 85-year-old angler walking back to his car with a limit of
fish. The angler said his older brother was still on the riverbank working on getting his limit. The
area ATV trails were busy and mushroom hunters continued to have success.
CO Tyler Ramaker (La Crescent) spent time on an investigation regarding a deer overlimit and
hunting without a license from the 2018 season. The Mississippi River remains in flood stage but
some anglers are finding sunfish.

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