Texas Angler Charged With Felony in Big Bass Event on Lake Fork
Okay, I like to fish A LOT, and I even love to participate in the occasional bass tournament. And just like every other tournament fisherman, the thrill of victory is an incredibly addictive drug, but I can't imagine how low one must stoop to try and cheat the other anglers.
It's called "Fraud" and that's exactly what Terry Keith Long of Bridgeport, Texas has been charged with. Specifically, the felony, third-degree fraud: freshwater fishing tournament.
In the story from wired2fish.com, we learn that the grand jury in Wood County, Texas has indicted Long after he allegedly trimmed the tail of a bass so it would fall outside the imposed slot limit of sixteen to twenty four inches. All fish caught that measure from sixteen inches to just short of twenty four inches must be immediately released.
It's alleged that Long trimmed the tail of the fish to make it fall short of the sixteen inch mark in an effort to win the prizes at the September 2018 Sealy Big Bass Splash. And when I say prizes, we're talking BIG money. In fact, in this same tournament on Lake Fork scheduled for this fall, winners are eligible for their share of $516,000!
A representative from Texas Parks and Wildlife provided the following account of the situation:
On Sept. 22, 2018, at the Sealy Big Bass Splash on Lake Fork, a fisherman by the name of Terry Long brought a fish in to be weighed. Further investigation revealed that his fish had been altered with its tail trimmed to fall within the slot limit. A case was presented to the Wood County grand jury on fraud: fresh water fishing tournament >=$10,000 3rd degree felony. The Wood County grand jury indicted Mr. Long and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Mr. Long was arrested Friday, March 9, 2019 and posted the $25,000 bond.