Young angler convicted of illegally tagging salmon
Published on September 10, 2014
A pair of young men from Cox’s Cove learned a hard lesson about the legalities of salmon angling recently.
Kyle Murrin and his friend Nathan Murrin, both of Cox’s Cove, were angling Crabbes River on July 13. The 18-year-olds were exiting the river when approached by two wildlife officers. A licence and backpack check was conducted.
The Murrins were each successful in catching a salmon, and had the appropriate tags affixed. According to the facts read into provincial court in Corner Brook Tuesday, however, both did not punch out the month and day of the catch on the tags.
Kyle told Judge Wayne Gorman he is guilty, but that it was an “honest mistake.” He said he did not know this was a requirement, and admitted to the judge he did not read the guide that accompanied his licence.
Kyle received a $250 fine and a one-year prohibition from possessing a licence. Both salmon were forfeited, but Crown attorney Lori St. Croix did not seek forfeiture of the two rods and reels that were taken.
Nathan was not present in court Tuesday, but his grandfather Kyle Blanchard attended on his behalf. He told the judge Nathan was out of town working. He wanted to enter a guilty plea on his grandson’s behalf, but was not legally permitted to do so.
Blanchard said Nathan was a first-time angler, a sport he had encouraged him to take up. He said erroneously affixing the tag was not an intentional act for the rookie angler. In court, he suggested wildlife officers should be paying more attention to attracting young anglers and teaching them to do so properly rather than “knocking them down.”
Gorman said there was no evidence of anybody trying to do that, but encouraged Blanchard to have Nathan seek legal counsel if there is any possible defence against the charges.
The grandfather again said it was his intentions to enter a guilty plea and that Nathan wanted the matter dealt with. The case was set over to Oct. 28.