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Stopped by Maine Warden Service

Asaltweapon

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Heading home yesterday afternoon from Moosehead and there's a MWS checkpoint on Rt. 15 in Shirley just outside Greenville.

I pull up to the wardens with my left arm holding back my boxer from the rear seat who wants nothing more than to give the guy a big wet kiss and he asks If I have have been to camp? I replied yes we were at our home. He asks if I was fishing or do I have any fishing gear of any kind in my truck. I replied no fishing or gear in the truck.

He then asked if I had any firearms on board. I replied yes sir, I do have a properly licensed handgun in the truck. He steps back away from my truck and says to me "have a safe trip".

It really looked like they were looking for OUI's as the other warden had his head in the back seat of a car 2 forward of us and it's only the second time in 14 years I've seen a roadblock. The first one on 95 S being done by the Border Patrol about 10 years ago.
 
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It really looked like they were looking for OUI's as the other warden had his head in the back seat of a car 2 forward of us and it's only the second time in 14 years I've seen a roadblock. The first one on 95 S being done by the Border Patrol about 10 years ago.


They do these frequently. This time of year they are looking for people taking illegal fish.
 
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I was up there a few weeks ago and never saw any wardens. Usually we see a Marine patrol and game warden paired up in a boat, randomly checking people, but not this year.
I think the big kicker is the daily bag limit VS the "in possession" limit. Daily limit is 5 lakers with only 2 over 18", 1 Salmon and IIRC 2 brookies. However, If I catch that and put them in the camp freezer, I could not do the same thing the next day as I would then be over the total "In possession" on my way home. I would have to eat one before catching another.

This is of course all Hypothetical, the fishing wasn't that good this year.....
 

Prepper

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I haven't yet seen anything like that before, but then I'm not normally as far north as Moosehead. Just the usual person sitting by a boat ramp checking boats for aquatic plants before you put it in.
 
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On my last check on the way home from Moxie, the Wardens were in Bingham at a rest stop. My buddy and I were just finishing an ice cream cone when I pulled in.

They asked specifically about fish and guns. Took a look in my cooler -no fish, saw the 12 pack of empties in the front well of the boat and said, "I see you've had an ice cream to hold down the beer, have a safe trip home."

Obviously not looking for OUI's, though the beers had been gone for several hours. But that was 7 or 8 years ago, who knows what would happen today.
 

Asaltweapon

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I too like that line.

This guy was very cool about the whole thing. Not like what one might expect down here in hell.

The wardens on the lake have always been good. They stopped "stopping me" on the lake. The first time after a safety check was over I asked them if they wanted to see my flares. The boat is set up for off shore fishing and flares are not required on inland waters. They said no it won't be required. Second time they came along side of me and checked out the boat under way. I asked them if they wanted me to stop. No they replied, you're all set. Both times they remarked "nice boat". Problem is one of these days I'm going to have a lake soda open and it's going to be a problem.

I wonder how good their radar skills are? Mine are OK. :)
 
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All winter long they were stopping people, mostly speed. Unfortunately usually on the way home, I was told the state is broke and needs the money. 201 was loaded with speed traps, same thing on the way to Rockwood. Maybe I'm noticing them more, but I believe what I was told, watch yourself with out of state plates.
 
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Isn't it the case that fish & game officers have greatly expanded powers for searching a vehicle, compared to a police officer?

My dad used to be a fish cop in Alaska and I remember him saying they did. I think there is a law that prohibited a cop from calling in fish and game to search a car when they didn't have probable cause... I may be wrong though
 
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Every time I have had an interaction with Maine Wildlife guys it has been a positive experience.Once after checking my hunting permit,one of them told me where he just saw a big buck down the road and gave me the location and wished me luck.Wish I could say the same about the guys in Mass.Most of them are real jerks.
 

M1911

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.Wish I could say the same about the guys in Mass.Most of them are real jerks.

Back when I was hunting deer in MA at a WMA, I would usually get stopped by an EPO once or twice a season. They were always very nice and polite. Checked my hunting license, asked me if I saw any deer, and let me get on my way quickly.
 
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A Game Warden has more rights than God.

But if you are obeying the law, you won't usually find a nicer and more accommodating fellow in the countryside. Oh, and they usually like to talk about their job. You can find out more about poaching in an hour with a Game Warden that you can researching the archives of the State Records for days!
 
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A Game Warden has more rights than God.

But if you are obeying the law, you won't usually find a nicer and more accommodating fellow in the countryside. Oh, and they usually like to talk about their job. You can find out more about poaching in an hour with a Game Warden that you can researching the archives of the State Records for days!

Agreed! The wardens in Maine are top-notch gentlemen/women.
 
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What rights do they have over other LEO? I'm genuinely curious. [grin] I'm not much of a hunter so I don't know much about this subject.

Expanded search, seizure and arrest authority as it pertains to those engaged in hunting and fishing.

Same goes for EPO's in Ma.
 
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As Half Cocked has alluded:

A Warden's authority is the same as any LEO, plus the expanded search authority.

As mentioned earlier in the thread, he/she can board your boat, also.... enter your RV, search your SUV, strip down your ATV, shake down your home, open coolers, gun cabinets, freezers, individual packages of frozen game, tackle boxes, knapsacks, excavate land, reel up you fishing lines, toss you tent, etc. Most of this without a warrant if you are actively participating in a sporting activity and he/she has reasonable suspicion.

And if you're beyond .08% BAL and operating - impound your car, boat, ATV, camper, motorcycle, snowmobile, lawn tractor, bicycle, skidder, horse -yes, your horse! And get cuffed and stuffed, of course.

Now if you've tipped the .20% BAL, say bye-bye to your guns for felony OUI.
 

drgrant

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Here in MA, first OUI is effectively a felony, even with BAL < 0.20% -- no more guns.

I thought the limit was .08 ? .20 and above = welcome to losing conciousness... nevermind being able to drive.... [laugh]

-Mike
 
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The first one on 95 S being done by the Border Patrol about 10 years ago.
BP has been doing a great job on 95 S as recently as last summer when they cuffed four employees from the company I used to work for. Seems they were a little suspicious when nobody in the truck had proper licenses and only one occupant of the company truck could speak English. God bless the USBP !![bow][bow]
 
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A Game Warden has more rights than God.

But if you are obeying the law, you won't usually find a nicer and more accommodating fellow in the countryside. Oh, and they usually like to talk about their job. You can find out more about poaching in an hour with a Game Warden that you can researching the archives of the State Records for days!

Game Wardens have no more rights than any other law enforcement officer in the State of Maine. They operate under the same Constitutional limits that any other LEO operates under. Unlike a drivers license or operating a MV on a public way you do not give up any of your rights while fishing or hunting. The powers of Game Wardens are largely urban legend.


As Half Cocked has alluded:

A Warden's authority is the same as any LEO, plus the expanded search authority.

As mentioned earlier in the thread, he/she can board your boat, also.... enter your RV, search your SUV, strip down your ATV, shake down your home, open coolers, gun cabinets, freezers, individual packages of frozen game, tackle boxes, knapsacks, excavate land, reel up you fishing lines, toss you tent, etc. Most of this without a warrant if you are actively participating in a sporting activity and he/she has reasonable suspicion.

And if you're beyond .08% BAL and operating - impound your car, boat, ATV, camper, motorcycle, snowmobile, lawn tractor, bicycle, skidder, horse -yes, your horse! And get cuffed and stuffed, of course.

Now if you've tipped the .20% BAL, say bye-bye to your guns for felony OUI.

There is no such thing as expanded search authority for Game Wardens, they need probable cause just like any other LEO.

A BAC of .20% is not a felony in Maine. The only way an OUI can be a felony in Maine is if you are a habitual offender.
 
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I'm not an expert. I can only base my views on actual cases and reports.

I may now be uninformed, as I can't seem to find the links to the higher court rulings - appeals may still be in progress. But reading this leads me to believe that Game Wardens in Maine at least once (as recently as Jan 13, 2009) had more power than God.

http://www.mpbn.net/News/MaineNews/tabid/181/ctl/ViewItem/mid/1858/ItemId/8911/Default.aspx

http://www.aclu.org/police/searchseizure/index.html

http://www.madatvclub.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=16:search--seizure-protection-at-center-of-case&catid=7:newsworthy

Again, I may be uninformed.

On felony OUI, it is clear that I am mistaken. BAC of .15% (not .20%) is only considered "Aggravated". An injury or death must be caused to be considered a felony.

http://www.dui.com/maine

Thank you for prodding me to some research, Psco112.
 
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