Peoria Public Radio Staff
Mon March 3, 2014
Legislation targets conservation police
Illinois law lets conservation police enter "all lands and waters” to enforce the Wildlife Code. The idea is, even if you have a huge private forest, you’re not allowed to, say, shoot a deer out of season.
State Rep. Dennis Reboletti, a Republican from Elmhurst, says just about every other type of police officer operates under stricter limits.
“If a state trooper wanted to go into your backyard to investigate what he thought something might be happening, he wouldn’t be able to do that unless he had probable cause, a warrant, or your permission."
Reboletti is co-sponsoring legislation that would limit conservation police to public land. This is important because a significant amount of hunting in Illinois happens on private land, not in public parks. Reboletti says he hopes the legislation prompts a discussion with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
A spokesman for DNR says the agency is reviewing the legislation, and declined further comment.