Pennsylvania Game News - January 2011 - 19
equipment when possible. In addition to enhancing the existing deputy program, the deputy application process was streamlined and is being monitored to increase efficiency. Changes include distributing deputy information packets and following up with a survey to identify needs for improvement. During the fiscal year, 460 calls and emails were received via the Turn-In-A-Poacher (TIP) Hotline and relayed to the appropriate region. Several prosecutions were made as a result of TIP information provided by concerned citizens. The Commission mandates that its officers receive annual training in Legal Updates, Communication Skills, Firearms, Defense and Control Tactics, First Aid and CPR, and Hazardous Materials First Responder training. Deputies receive additional training by attending a minimum of four of the six district training meetings. Additional training modules were developed this year by the Training Division, and more than 30 are available on the agency’s intranet site. That the investment in training increases the professionalism and technical competence of Game Commission officers can be seen in our enforcement statistics. Officers encountered 18,684 violations during this fiscal year through high visibility patrol, selective enforcement operations, overt and covert investigations, surveillance operations and complaint response. The enforcement actions taken by officers encountering those violations resulted in 12,129 warnings and 6,555 citations being issued — a rate of almost two to one — indicating our officers’ discretion in balancing enforcements effort to focus on the violations with the most impact to the wildlife resource. Of the violations cited, the conviction rate was 96 percent, further attesting to the discretion, technical competence and professionalism of Game Commission officers. The ratio of appeals of initial convictions was a mere 0.7 percent. The final measurement of the training investment is the low citizen complaint to enforcement contact ratio. Only six complaints were received against officers this year, none of which proved to be founded. The top 10 violations prosecuted this year were: 1. Unlawful taking or possession of game or wildlife – 704 prosecutions. 2. Operating vehicles on Game Lands in areas closed to travel, primarily ATV violations – 388 prosecutions. 3. Possession of a loaded firearm in a stationary vehicle – 324 prosecutions. 4. Hunting or taking wildlife through the use of bait or enticement – 316 prosecutions. 5. Safety zone violations – 224 prosecutions. 6. Big game tagging violations – 221 prosecutions. 7. Unlawful use of lights while hunting – 199 prosecutions. 8. Casting a light after 11 p.m. – 190 prosecutions. 9. Possession of a loaded firearm in a moving motor vehicle – 173 prosecutions. 10. Hunting or taking wildlife through use of a motor vehicle – 166 prosecutions.
NEW DEPUTIES commissioned this fiscal year from left to right: Kurt Randolph, Darren Lindsey, Albert Propst, Robert C. Johnson, John T. Sivo, Michael E. Jordan, John C. DeMille, James R. Rosnick, Alan G. Kiersted and Walter L. Gasiorek.