DEC Environmental Conservation Police Officer Highlights

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DEC Environmental Conservation Police Officer Highlights

Recent ECO Actions

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs) enforce the 71 Chapters of NY Environmental Conservation Law (ECL), protecting fish and wildlife and preserving environmental quality across New York. In 2019, the 288 ECOs across the state responded to 25,704 calls and worked on cases that resulted in 16,855 tickets or arrests for crimes ranging from deer poaching to solid waste dumping, illegal mining, the black market pet trade, and excessive emissions violations.

"DEC's Environmental Conservation Police Officers are working hard in communities across New York to protect natural resources by upholding our state's stringent laws and regulations and protecting public safety," Commissioner Basil Seggos said. "Our ECOs are expertly trained to perform their duties in every setting-from cities and wilderness-and continue to adapt to meet new and emerging challenges as they build on their longstanding commitment to protect New York's environment."

If you witness an environmental crime or believe a violation of environmental law occurred, please call the DEC Division of Law Enforcement hotline at 1-844-DEC-ECOS (1-844-332-3267).

Pair charged with illegally shooting deer from a road - Chautauqua County
On Dec. 12, ECOs partnered with Town of Ellicott Police to arrest two men on numerous violations of Environmental Conservation Law following the illegal taking of a deer in the town of Poland. Investigators found that at approximately 9 p.m., one of the men shot a deer from Sprague Hill Road with a spotlight, on posted property, and with a rifle equipped with a silencer. Officers determined that the rifle and silencer were provided by the other man who was also at the scene when the deer was shot. ECO Kinney began investigating after a landowner reported blood and drag marks in the snow near his property shortly after the incident. The men, both 22, were charged with the illegal taking of a deer at night with a light, discharging a firearm from a roadway, using a silencer, and trespassing. The men are due in the Town of Poland Court to answer the charges in February.

photo of rifle in case with evidence tag on it
Rifle used to shoot deer from a road in town of Poland

Christmas Flooding Storm Response - Statewide
In response to flooding caused by melting snow on Dec. 24 and 25 in parts of the state, ECOs partnered with additional DEC staff and New York State agencies to respond to emergency calls. Flood Incident Support Team members were staged in Ulster, Broome, Washington, and Schoharie counties and responded to various calls from residents and motorists requesting assistance. Heavy rains on Christmas Eve caused significant flooding in Greene County, as well, resulting in ECOs assisting first responders with home evacuations, welfare checks, and calls for assistance.

ECO vehicle blocking flooded road on a dark, rainy night with lights flashing
ECOs block closed road in Greene County due to flooding conditions

https://www.dec.ny.gov/press/press.html

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Basil Seggos, Commissioner

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