Fisherman finds fish illegally dumped at Lake Hefner

OKLAHOMA CITY - A fisherman has found someone’s catch of the day dumped at Lake Hefner. It's not only a waste but also illegal.

Now, game wardens are searching for the suspect.

Oklahoma County Game Wardens saw a post on Facebook that the fisherman found about 20 crappies dumped somewhere along the dam while fishing Sunday.

"Basically, it hurts the sport because all of those fish are wasted,” said David Hughes, a fisherman.

Hughes was pretty much born with a fishing pole in his hand. When he's not working at his tackle shop, he's on the water.

Hughes loves taking home the meat for his family.

“That's what it's all about. The lakes are full of fish that are good to eat and feed a lot of families,” he said. “That's why you keep them, if you're going to eat them, keep them. If you're not going to eat them, throw them back.”

Hughes said he was disgusted when he heard about what the fisherman found Sunday on Lake Hefner: the about 20 crappies dumped on the side of the road.

“It's really sick because, if you're just going fun fishing, all you have to do is catch and release,” he said. “Bass fisherman do it every day. Catch them, look at them and throw them back. They're one of the best freshwater fish you can eat. They're great tasting, and to see a thing like that is a waste.”

News 4 was there as Tell Judkins, an Oklahoma County game warden, was searching for the fish, but he couldn't find it. He believes other wildlife may have got to it before they did.

Judkins said anglers should call them immediately after finding illegal activity.

“They can really be our eyes and our ears to help us locate these potential poachers or theses people who are doing illegal things with our wildlife and help us bring them to justice," he said.

Hughes also said to respect the wildlife and the sport.

“Call the game warden," he said. “Report someone that does that because to waste fish like that or to go over your limit, that's unsportsmanlike. That's not what the sport is all about.”

If you have any information on the case, you can call the Game Thief Hotline at 1-800-522-8039.