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Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
10/17/2013
Posts: 9
So a guy at work was just telling me the other day that a buddy of his was fishing up on Red the other week and while he was out there a Game Warden knocked on his door and addressed himself. The guy refused to let him in and ended up getting fined. That is the basic version of the secondhand story I was told. Just wondering if any of you guys have heard of anything like this before and if you can actually be fined for refusing to let a Warden in and on what legal ground keeping in mind our 4th Amendment rights. (when asking this question to you all it is under the assumption there is no reasonable suspicion for forced entry)

I'm already expecting the replies of "well if your not doing anything wrong you have nothing to hide", "just be nice and let them do their job", "if your decent with them you can find out about hot spots"

Those things are all fine and dandy but they all miss the point of our 4th Amendment rights. Thanks guys in advance for all of your insight on this.

Posted on: 2015/2/2 21:21
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
Hunting Field Staff
Joined:
02/04/2008
From Iron Range.
Posts: 1937
My first question would be what law was cited on the ticket....ie: what was he fined for?

I know the law has bounced around a little, so I am not certain what the rules state right now. Personally, I am polite and cordial, and I answer the questions they ask, but no more. And I do not invite them inside. I am not sure I have ever had one ask to come in either......

SL

Posted on: 2015/2/2 21:34
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
10/17/2013
Posts: 9
Thanks for the reply Shortline. Sorry I should have added that I asked that very same question to the guy at work who told me the story and he said he didnt know what exactly was cited. Just that the guy ended up with around $185 in fines. Thats the problem with those darn fishing stories the actual facts allways seem to slip through the cracks! lol

Posted on: 2015/2/2 21:41
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
01/24/2011
From central mn
Posts: 414
Wouldn't not letting them in be like not taking a breathalizer test? 4th amendment or not, why wouldn't you Let them in? They have a job to do, and frankly, anyone bending or breaking the rules should get caught. That goes for my friends, my family, or even myself, should that ever happen. I heard the only reason they have to knock at all was from years back when a warden opened a door and a lady was "sitting" on a bucket.

Posted on: 2015/2/2 21:44
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
05/14/2005
From Longville
Posts: 3501
My son had a co check him the other day and he asked to come in and also asked to look in the back of his pickup. He has a tonneau cover on it. My son agreed to both. He was not breaking any laws.

185 in fines. He was doing something wrong to get that much in fines.

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:01
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
01/27/2015
From Ely Mn
Posts: 9
Must have been doing something wrong... Same price as a Minor...

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:07
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
10/17/2013
Posts: 9
MN has an "implied consent" law regaurding breathalizers basically when you get a drivers lic. you are agreeing to undergo testing for alcohol via breath, blood, or urine when directed by law enforcement. Now to the best of my knowledge there is no such similar "implied consent" laws pertaining to law enforcement searches when you buy a fishing lic. No as far as "why wouldn't you let them in? they are just doing their job." As stated in my original post anyones reason for not wanting to let them in, or just because they are trying to do their job is irrelivant to the question at hand. I also agree with you that wether its my friends, family, or myself if you break the law you should be held accountable. Now that being said I personally dont appriciate having to prove my innocense to anyone for no reason especially if there in no indication that i am currently or have previously been in violation of any law. I am all for respecting that laws and regulations of the state as long as they are fair an constitutional and i certainly don't condone breaking the law. With that being said I also expect that our law enforcemt officials respect and follow those same laws that we do and even more so respect our constitutional rights as well.

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:10
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
10/17/2013
Posts: 9
The guy probably was doing something wrong with a fine that steep but i don't know the guy or if there actually is some kind of fine just based on refusing entry to a CO. But like i said earlier thats the prob with theses darn fishing stories lol for all i know by the time the story made its way to me out could be so far off base its not even funny. I'll probably find out in a week or two that the guy let the CO in and while he was getting his lic out of his wallet he dropped it down the hole and lost $185 LOL!

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:17
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
Anonymous
They'd technically need a warrant to enter unless they have cause. There's nothing stopping them from looking thru a window. I'm "guessing" since he got nailed with a fine, he had cause. I'm not aware of a fine for just not allowing them to enter.

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:32
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Re: Letting Game Warden into your fish house.
LSF Member
Joined:
02/11/2010
Posts: 74
Quote:

pailofperch wrote:
I heard the only reason they have to knock at all was from years back when a warden opened a door and a lady was "sitting" on a bucket.


This statement is exactly why the courts protect our 4th amendment rights to privacy. People will always say if you are not doing anything wrong you should have no problem with letting an officer into your home. Well if you read the case law surrounding our 4th amendment rights there is plenty of language regarding the fact we have the right to be naked in our homes without the fear of law enforcement entering. In other words, there are plenty of legal reasons to require an officer to have a warrant to enter our homes.

Now a women sitting on a bucket is not why MN courts have held 4th amendment protection applies to fish houses. It all comes down to reasonable expectations of privacy. I don't remember the exact facts of the case from several years ago bu the court found we have a reasonable expectation of privacy in our fish houses therefore 4th amendment protections apply and law enforcement needs a warrant.

As to your friends friends friend getting a $185 ticket it is likely due to something the CO found outside of the fish house or was able to see from outside the fish house. Law enforcement needs a warrant to enter your fishhouse but they do not need a warrant to look through the windows if they are not covered up. Its called the plain view doctrine and open field doctrine.

All I can say is requiring a warrant to enter our home/fish house is a good thing and a right that non of us law abiding citizens should be willing to give up!!

walternator

Posted on: 2015/2/2 22:34
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