Oregon Game Scofflaws At It Again

If it’s mid-October, it’s time for the Oregon State Police’s monthly rundown of game scofflaws, boneheads and jackasses.

Here are some real sterling examples from the agency’s August newsletter:


Sr. Tpr. Halsey (Albany) investigated a report of a subject who had foul-hooked a Chinook salmon, gaffed the salmon in the side, retained it for several minutes, and then threw it back into the South Santiam River below Foster Dam. The reporting person attempted to revive the salmon but was not able to.

The suspect admitted these allegations were true. Consequently, Halsey cited the male subject for Wasting Game Fish— Chinook Salmon.


Astoria troopers monitored Big Creek over several days at various times. On one patrol, between 12 a.m. and 4 a.m., Tpr. O’Connor and Rct. Warwick contacted several anglers carrying large nets, a pitchfork, and rods rigged up with gear commonly used for snagging fish.

They issued seven criminal citations for Angling Prohibited Hours for Salmon and Angling Prohibited Method—Weight within 18 Inches of Hook.


Sr. Tpr. Pearson and Sr. Tpr. Gunderson (The Dalles) received an early morning complaint of a gillnet in the Deschutes sanctuary. While en route, they received a call of a subject who began fishing at 1:30 a.m. under the Deschutes River Bridge and retained hatchery steelhead.

An angler who showed up to save a rock until legal fishing time told the subject to cease and desist. Another person called OSP.

Upon contact, the subject was still fishing (with his nine-year-old son) and possessed eight steelhead.

Based on the fish’s condition, the troopers determined the subject kept four steelhead between 1:30 a.m. and 3:00 a.m. Some fish were back-dated on his and his son’s tag for the day before.

The troopers cited the subject criminally for Taking Steelhead Prohibited Hours and Borrowing a Harvest Tag and seized six steelhead and his gear.


Tpr. Schwartz (St. Helens), Rct. Herman, and Rct. Warwick (Astoria) conducted a boat patrol on the Pacific Ocean. As they approached a boat with two anglers 12 miles offshore, they noticed an angler trying to hide something.

Herman boarded the boat. While he was talking with the angler, Warwick noticed a salmon hidden under a tarp. Herman’s consent search located a nonadipose fin-clipped coho under the tarp and a second hidden in a rear compartment. The angler was also using two rods, barbed hooks on all lines, and treble hooks on one line.

The troopers cited the angler criminally for Unlawful Taking of Nonadipose Fin-Clipped Coho Salmon (x 2), Angling Prohibited Method—Barbed Hooks for Salmon (x 2), Aiding in a Wildlife Violation—Barbed Hooks for Salmon, and Angling Prohibited Method—Treble Hooks for Salmon and seized both coho.


Tpr. Baimbridge (Roseburg) set up to observe subjects baiting bear. When the subjects arrived, Baimbridge videoed the baiting. After the subjects baited the barrel, they climbed up into their tree stands. Baimbridge hiked a mile down to their stands, but the subjects saw him coming and took off.

The subjects had driven in behind a locked gate that they had installed a personal lock on. Three deputies who Baimbridge had set up at the gate met the subjects when they tried to flee the area.

Baimbridge cited the subjects for Hunting Bear with the Aid of Bait and other crimes. He seized their rifles, game cameras, bait barrel, and other evidence. One subject admitted to using bait to take a trophy 400-pound plus bear.


Sr. Tpr. Turnbo and Tpr. Olsen (Salem) responded to a complaint in the Gates area regarding an alleged bear bait station on private property. The troopers located scent wicks hanging from trees, a jelly-like substance poured on stumps and small trees,and dried blood on the ground.

They followed tire tracks found down an ATV trail and into to a sub-development. Turnbo recognized a residence where he seized a poached deer previously. The troopers approached this residence and noted blood in the driveway and in the back of a vehicle. After conducting interviews at the residence, the troopers determined two subjects baited bear with doughnuts and a bottle of bear bait, one subject shot a 400+-pound black bear without a tag, and the subject’s hunting partner tagged it.

The troopers cited the shooter for Taking Bear with Bait, Taking Bear without a 2010 Bear Tag, Criminal Trespass in the Second Degree, and Borrowing a 2010 Bear Tag and his partner for Hunting Bear with Bait, Aiding in a Wildlife Crime, Criminal Trespass in the Second Degree, and Loaning a 2010 Bear Tag. They also seized the bear and two rifles.


Tpr. Stone (Roseburg) investigated a possible poaching incident near Drain where a shot was heard on a Sunday evening, and a neighbor located a gut pile on Tuesday. On Thursday, Stone obtained consent from the landowner, who lives across the country, to investigate the incident. Stone located fresh deer legs, a hide, and ribcage at the same location where the gut pile was located.

Tire impressions from the carcass led to and turned up a driveway with only one house on it.

With Sr. Tpr. Bowersox (Patrol) assisting, Stone contacted the suspect’s residence. The troopers observed a truck with similar tire tread and design parked near the shop and fresh deer hair, blood smears, and fatty tissue in plain view inside the bed.

When the suspect eventually returned home, Stone interviewed the suspect and obtained a confession. The troopers seized a 30.06 rifle with a spent shell casing in the chamber along with packaged and unprocessed deer meat. The suspect’s wife hid the large three-point buck head in the shop’s attic, but it was located and seized.

Troopers cited the suspect for Taking Deer Closed Season and the wife for Aiding in a Game Violation.


Sr. Tpr. Cushman and Sgt. Meyer (Central Point) both caught a man salmon fishing on the Rogue River with a leader over six feet long, the maximum length on the Rogue River.

Cushman caught him with a 12-foot leader and cited him.

Meyer caught him using a 9 1/2-foot leader a week or two later and cited him again.

The man claimed it was a “stupid law,” and he was trying to get a petition to change it.

The man was convicted on Cushman’s citation and the judge reduced the fine to $90.

The man was again convicted on Meyer’s citation. The judge reluctantly required the whole base fine amount of $120, and he declined to suspend the man’s angling license.


Tpr. Boyd (Springfield) contacted a large van on USFS Quartz Creek Road. He recognized the subjects from a bear grass case he made last year in the area. Boyd asked the driver how much bear grass he had. The driver did not specifically answer but presented a USFS permit that covered 1,000 pounds of bear grass and was not filled out prior to transport.

A consent search revealed about 10,000 pounds of bear grass.

Boyd escorted the van to the USFS McKenzie Ranger District station where the bear grass was seized and stored for disposal by USFS.

Boyd cited all four subjects for Unlawful Cut and Transport of Special Forest Products—Bear Grass, a Class B misdemeanor that carries a penalty of up to $2,500 and six months in jail.

One Response to “Oregon Game Scofflaws At It Again”

  1. Cliff - Seattle, WA Says:

    It never ceases to amaze me the number of people that just don’t give a rip about the rules. This is only second to how stupid people are about doing it.

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