VANCOUVER, Wash– A joint enforcement patrol coordinated by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) resulted in 66 citations issued in Cowlitz and Lewis counties over the past weekend.
Dubbed Operation Lasso, the emphasis patrol involved some 20 officers targeting fish and wildlife violations and forest product thefts. Participating agencies, besides WDFW, included the U.S. Forest Service, the state Department of Natural Resources, Washington State Parks, Lewis County Prosecutor's Office, Cowlitz County Prosecutor's Office, Cowlitz County Sheriff's Department, Tacoma Power, Hampton Tree Farms and Weyerhaeuser Co.
In 376 field contacts from Friday evening to Sunday evening, 19 citations were issued for carrying loaded guns in vehicles;12 for fishing in closed waters; six for failing to record salmon catches; three for hunting without tags; two for hunting with the aid of a motor vehicle; two for hunting with spotlights; two for violating hunter orange clothing requirements, and one each for snagging salmon, fishing without a license, failure to tag big game and failure to tag a deer. Other citations were issued for wood theft, drug and alcohol violations and reckless driving.
Operation Lasso, now in its fourth year, was organized to coincide with the final days of the late buck hunting season.
The round-the-clock joint patrol was coordinated by Alan Thomas, a WDFW fish and wildlife officer in the department's southwest Washington regional office.