Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents along with Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office (PPSO) deputies arrested a Belle Chasse man for alleged illegal drug and hunting activity on Jan. 28.
LDWF agents cited Todd Ferniz, 58, for hunting deer during illegal hours, taking deer during a closed season, hunting wild quadrupeds during illegal hours, and failing to comply with deer tagging requirements. The PPSO arrested Ferniz for multiple drug violations and weapon charges and booked him into the Plaquemines Parish Jail.
PPSO deputies called LDWF agents after receiving a complaint from a land owner regarding trespassing and illegal discharging of a firearm from a public road. PPSO deputies stopped Ferniz who was allegedly in possession of drug paraphernalia and illegal drugs.
When agents arrived and interviewed Ferniz he admitted to shooting an antlerless deer and a hog around 4 a.m. that morning. Agents also found him in possession of various illegal narcotics, drug paraphernalia, and an unregistered sound suppressor at his residence.
Agents seized the deer and a rifle with night vision scope. The PPSO seized 12 other weapons and the unregistered sound suppressor.
Hunting deer during illegal hours and taking deer during a closed season carries up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for each offense. Hunting wild quadrupeds during illegal hours brings up to a $500 fine and 90 days in jail. Failing to comply with deer tagging requirements carries up to a $350 fine.
Ferniz will also be assessed civil restitution for the replacement value of the illegally harvested deer totaling $1,624.
LDWF agents involved in the case are Sgt. Villere Reggio, and Lt. Adam Young. PPSO deputies involved are Lt. Tony Seput. Deputy Rodney King, and Deputy Bryan Munch. The case will be forwarded to District Attorney Charles Ballay for prosecution.