CO John Slatinski (Ray) checked and monitored several areas generating complaints involving ATV use. He delivered a restoration order to an individual responsible for an unpermitted project involving wetlands and took care of equipment maintenance issues. Slatinski also fielded several complaints involving wildlife and noted is seems people are becoming less tolerant of sharing “our” environment with wild animals.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports wolves and beavers continue to cause problems. Boating activity continues to be monitored. Fishing reports remain poor and bug reports indicate good numbers of mosquitoes, wood ticks and deer flies in the woods. Difficulty understanding no parking signs at public access sites continues, as does related ticket writing. Area forest road were checked.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters, OHVs, aquatic invasive species and state park enforcement. He assisted the Hibbing Police Department with a person who had a warrant, fled from them and holed up in a house. He was arrested. Bozovsky worked on a case where a boat was purposely driven through numerous geese on a lake. He also spent considerable time dealing with an eviction process on state land. A motorist who failed to yield at a stop sign to the officer in his squad, as well as a bicyclist, was also seen holding her phone near the steering wheel right after she committed the violation. The phone distraction is not unusual, however nearly hitting the squad and bicyclist is and she was educated about paying attention while driving. Enforcement action was taken on OHV trespass, unregistered watercraft, failure to remove the drain plug from a boat when transporting, no driver’s license, failure to yield and a few ATV and OHM violations.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) attended the funeral of corrections officer Joseph Gomm as a member of the DNR Honor Guard. Area lakes were patrolled with many anglers and boaters being checked. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license and insufficient PFDs. Frericks spoke at a firearms safety and bowhunter education class of 49 students at the Laurentian Environmental Learning Center. ATV activity was monitored. One ATVer was stopped after Frericks observed him operating his ATV with three juvenile passengers, none of whom were wearing a helmet. A citation was issued.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) worked angling and boating on area lakes and found violations of angling with extra lines, failure to transfer boat ownership, and no license in possession. Fredin responded to an ATV accident with injuries. The ATV rolled on a county road and the driver was taken to the hospital via ambulance.
Cook – vacant.
International Falls #2 – vacant.District 6 - Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely #1) spent time patrolling for ATV activity in Ely. Heavy use was observed over the Blueberry/Arts Festival weekend and with it came a high violation rate. Violations included failure to display ATV registration, operating an OHM on a roadway, and operating an unregistered OHM.
CO John Velsvaag (Ely #2) checked anglers this past week. He also handled multiple complaints about nuisance animals and fielded informational calls. Velsvaag also attended a meeting at which public access issues were discussed.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) assisted with firearms training at the Enforcement Academy at Camp Ripley. Manning also answered questions on BWCAW camping and regulations, handled a report of an injured hawk, and conducted patrols in an area of ATV complaints.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked primarily lakes in and out of the BWCA and ATV enforcement. Bermel watched a group of four anglers in two boats each fishing with extra lines. Upon approach they all tried to quickly reel in their extra lines. A citation was issued to each. Other enforcement action included no navigational lights after sunset, expired watercraft registration, no PFD, and cans in the BWCA.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked at Camp Ripley for another week. He assisted with Academy 18 firearms training.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) assisted with firearms training at the CO Academy.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked ATV and fishing activity during the week. Warm weather has slowed fishing success and spurred more water recreation activities. Murray took calls of nuisance wildlife complaints and followed up on state campground violations.District 7 - Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) patrolled area ATV trails, checked anglers and boaters, issued nuisance beaver permits, and worked on a complaint of possible illegal posting of a right of way. He also completed paperwork for wolf depredations on cattle and handled several injured wildlife calls.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) reports working ATV, boating, AIS, and sport fishing enforcement. Van Asch also spent time completing an ongoing fire investigation. Enforcement action was taken for angling with extra lines, no angling license in possession, operating an ATV on a state highway, youth passengers under 18 without a helmet, careless or negligent acts resulting in a fire, possession of drug paraphernalia, and possessing small amounts of marijuana.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) patrolled area lakes for angling activity with enforcement action taken for angling with extra lines and not possessing an angling license. He also attended multiple firearms safety classes where area youth were taught about firearms safety and game and fish laws. A fur presentation was also given to an area youth summer camp.
Hill City – vacant.
NE ATV officer – vacant.District 8 - Duluth area
CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) spent time checking anglers but little success was observed. A complaint of a wetland being filled in was fielded and the investigation started. Enforcement action was taken for no license in possession, no fire extinguisher onboard a watercraft, failure to display registration and violating a no wake zone.
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth West) worked anglers and boaters on area lakes. A waters complaint was handled along with follow up on a wetland restoration order. ATV complaint areas were worked and numerous complaints about wildlife were handled.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) worked fishing, OHV, and AIS enforcement during the week. Humphrey attended funeral services for corrections officer Joseph Gomm on Thursday, July 26 as part of the DNR Enforcement’s Honor Guard. Humphrey received a call on a livestock depredation complaint in the Kettle River area and patrols were conducted on area lakes and trails.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) spent time working with the area hydrologist on a waters complaint on Sand Lake near Moose Lake where someone believes that there are people tampering with the outlet and blocking flow so the lake stays at a high level. This investigation is ongoing. A large amount of litter was dumped in the Blackhoof Wildlife Management area. The garbage was searched for clues leading to a suspect but no evidence was located. People are asked to call in with any information on this case. A grass fire was reported near Barnum along the Munger Trail. The fire is believed to be started by arson. An investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is asked to call. Extra patrol was conducted in area state parks with enforcement action taken for consuming alcoholic beverages in a state park, no vehicle permit, illegal campfire and being in the park after hours. Fishing activity is slow in the area. One angler was found angling without a license. He admitted to the officer that he was fishing every month or so and did not have a license since 2013. He took his ticket and stated that he thought the fine balanced itself out for the times that he never purchased one. He did say he would buy a license from now on.Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked the upper shore of Lake Superior in the Grand Marais area. Water temperatures are still relatively cold and some anglers are having decent success. Olson worked the area lakes north of Duluth with a focus on boating safety enforcement and PWC hours of operation in the evenings. He followed up on a complaint of a bear that has been causing a ruckus since the spring and assisted the sheriff’s office with calls for service during the week.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked boaters and anglers around Silver Bay and Grand Marais. Questions were answered about upcoming fishing and hunting seasons. Miller also worked a boat and water detail with a county sheriff’s office. Training items were completed and preparation done for upcoming FTO work. Enforcement action was taken for angling and boating violations.
Lake Superior Unit – vacant.