Environmental protection police on patrol


For release: Wednesday, July 6, 2022

The Law Enforcement Division of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) enforces all 71 chapters of the State of New York, protecting fish and wildlife and preserving environmental quality throughout New York State. In 1880, the first eight Game Protectors proudly began serving to protect the natural resources and people of New York State. In 2021, 282 Environmental Conservation Police (ECO) officers and investigators across the state responded to 26,207 calls and worked on cases that resulted in 11,562 tickets or arrests for violations ranging from deer poaching, solid waste dumping, illegal mining, black market pet trade. , and excessive emissions violations.

“DEC’s Environmental Protection law enforcement officers and investigators are on the front lines every day to protect our natural resources by complying with New York’s environmental laws and regulations and protecting public health,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “Whether it’s ensuring hunters and anglers follow rules and regulations on the land and on the water, or maintaining partnerships with local law enforcement agencies investigating crimes such as solid waste dumping and air emissions violations, ECOs and investigators are on patrol, ready to serve their communities. year brings new challenges, and fortunately, these officers and investigators are expertly trained to carry out their duties with perseverance, integrity and good judgment, as they have done for over a century. »

Youth Outdoor Exhibition – County of Ulster
On June 4, ECOs Johnson and Chomicki attended the Ulster County Federated Sports Clubs Youth Outdoor Exhibition at Lippman Park in Wawarsing. The ECOs displayed native animal furs and equipment such as ATVs to encourage children to get outside and have fun. Officers also answered questions about the duties of an ECO and participating children had the opportunity to fish for free through the Wawarsing Rod and Gun Club.

Native furs on ECO table at Youth Outdoor Expo in Ulster County

Injured Fisherman – County of Ulster
On June 8, ECO Johnson responded to a 911 call for an injured person along the rocks of Rondout Creek in Marbletown. The man had fallen on some rocks while fishing along the shore of the creek. ECO Johnson, along with officers from the New York State Police, Ulster County Sheriff’s Office, Rosendale Police Department and High Falls Fire Department, transported the injured fisherman to an ambulance waiting where he was assessed.

Red emergency truck with red boat on the back
Emergency crews respond to injuries on Rondout Creek

Distressed Fawn – Erie County
On June 12, ECO Mathis responded to reports of two fawns attempting to cross Route 5 in the city of Hamburg after a doe was hit and killed on the busy road. Officer Mathis and a Good Samaritan attempted to catch the fawns without success. After several attempts over the next few days, ECO Mathis secured one of the malnourished fawns from behind a nearby residence and transported him to a local wildlife rehabilitator.

ECO holding a small deer in a green blanket
ECO Mathis with rescued fawn

Community Public Service Celebration – Plattsburgh
On June 23, ECOs Nicols and Lacroix and Lt. Younglove conducted outreach at the Plattsburgh Community Oriented Public Service (COPS) Celebration hosted by the Plattsburgh Police Department and Physicians Health Plan of the Capital District. The event, attended by about 300 people, connects law enforcement officers to the communities they serve and features free giveaways, local food trucks and music.

Two children sit on ECO ATV with an ECO standing next to them
ECO Lt. Younglove and some special young visitors at the celebration of community-oriented public services in Plattsburgh

600 Donated Fishing Rods – Erie County
On June 25, ECO Damrath joined leaders of Buffalo United Front, a community-based charity, to host the Free Family Fishing Weekend in the group. The two-day event was held at Broderick Park on the Niagara River and is the largest of its kind in New York State. Organizers handed out 600 fishing rods to the park, which was filled with new fishing enthusiasts throughout the weekend.

People line up outside a white tent for a free fishing weekend
Many Attendees Attend Free Family Fishing Weekend in Buffalo

Busy Day for ECOs on the Atlantic Ocean – New York County
The morning of June 25 began with ECOs Milliron, McCarthy and Lt. Unger conducting fisherman checks in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), targeting highly migratory species such as shark and tuna. Officers spotted a small humpback whale feeding on a large bunker bank about four miles south of Rockaway Beach. To protect the whale, officers advised boaters in the area to keep their distance and monitored the area to ensure boaters complied. In the early afternoon, ECOs assisted the US Coast Guard during the “Jet Ski Invasion 2022” event on the East River near Randall’s Island. Hundreds of jet skiers crossed the East and Harlem rivers throughout the day. During the patrol, ECOs responded to a distress call from a small vessel with three people on board that ran aground off Rikers Island. No one was injured and the New York Police Department transported the group ashore.

whale vent sprayed in water
ECOs keep boaters away to protect whale spotted near Rockaway Beach

ECO on the edge of a boat as they approach jet skiers in the distance
Large group of jet skiers at Harlem River near Randall’s Island

ECO on a boat with tall buildings in the background
ECOs prepare to assist ship aground in East River, Queens County

Special Fishing Event for Some Special Kids – Long Island Sound
On June 29, ECO hosted a special fishing event for young children who are new to angling. ECOs DeRose, Macropoulos and Cacciola took a group of 15 children from Little Flower Children Services fishing in the Long Island Sound aboard the Osprey, a private charter boat donated for the occasion and captained by April Peterson. I Fish NY staff joined the DEC Law Enforcement Division to help and educate children as they caught porgy. The trip was organized and funded by DEC and I Fish NY, the New York State Conservation Officers Association, and donations from Costco, BJ Wholesale, Sun Screen, and Cancer Services at Northwell Health, who donated bottled water reusable.

ECO and person holding a fish during the excursion
ECO DeRose with an enthusiastic young angler after his very first catch

child standing with ECO as they show a fish they caught
ECO Macropoulos with a young fisherman who made his first catch on a special fishing trip on Long Island Sound

children stand around someone demonstrating around a small children's pool
Children get a lesson during a fish dissection demonstration aboard the Osprey

Band in the Bay – Great Sacandaga Lake – Fulton County
On July 3, the ECO Manns, Klein and Shaw patrolled Grand Sacandaga Lake for the annual “Band in the Bay” event. Every year hundreds of ships drop anchor and listen to live music in the afternoons. This year, New York State Police, Fulton, Saratoga and Montgomery County Sheriff’s Offices, Fulton County Emergency Management and local fire and emergency departments joined the ECO to patrol the event. Officers moved continuously across the lake to ensure public safety. There were no significant incidents during the event and everyone enjoyed a great day on the water.

aerial view of docks and boats
Aerial view of ships and marine patrols at the band in the bay

ECOs Assist US Coast Guard with Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Show – New York City
ECOs assisted the U.S. Coast Guard in ensuring maritime safety during the annual 4th of July fireworks display on the East River in New York City. Two DEC patrol vessels maintained a security perimeter in the area, along with other law enforcement agencies.

two bright clusters of fireworks in the night sky
DEC patrol vessel maintaining perimeter security for pyrotechnic display

big fireworks in a smoky sky
DEC patrol vessel providing security on East River, New York County


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