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Let me start by saying that it's a damn shame that some people have made accusations (whether direct or indirect), to the integrity of the NWB circuit and to those teams that did well, specifically the winning team, who are stand out guys and have weighed bags of that sort in previous years, for cheating after this was found. It's really sad that guys put in hard work and instead of talking about the incredible bag 25+lbs that was weighed in, we are talking about a cage that more than likely was misconstrued as a tool for cheating at the NWB tournament. 

On to the main subject here. Here's the statement from Northwest Bass:

Caging Issue: Northwest Bass Tri-Cities Qualifier

It has come to the attention of Northwest Bass that a cage found within official tournament waters has raised concerns about potential fish tampering during the June 11th qualifier on the river.  Tournament officials, upon notification of the cage, conducted all necessary investigations to ensure the integrity of all competitors and their catch for the day in question.

Officials for Northwest Bass have over forty years combined experience in operating fishing tournaments and contests and do not take these matters lightly.  Our goal is always to direct the events with integrity and attention to detail.  Our officials conduct weigh-ins with extreme scrutiny for signs of fish tampering.

In the days following the discovery of the cage we conducted an investigation into this issue.  No signs of tampering were found.  Because there was no evidence, probable cause or protests directed at any competing team, no further investigation was deemed necessary.  Northwest Bass has great respect for our angler base and therefore will not take part in a proverbial “witch hunt” without proper evidence of wrong doing.

Anglers are also strongly encouraged to review and maintain knowledge of current Northwest Bass rules and regulations.

Moving forward, we remind all competing anglers that fish tampering is prohibited by Northwest Bass.  Any infraction of this rule will result in disqualification.

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Replies to This Discussion

Chris,

Let's be crystal clear- There was ZERO criticism towards anyone who thought the cage was used for cheating. The issue I had was when unfounded accusations started to fly...   I saw the cage from the river- white pvc, no real attempt to conceal it, and it was obvious a portion of the cage was above the water line.  Maybe I've hunted ducks way too long, but this attempt at a cage was laughable.. Potential uses for the cage:

1)  Ron's neighbor's cat

2)  Carp Hunter

3)  Holding cage for bank angler's bounty

4)  Cheating in a tournament- by the way, which one?

5)  Maybe some local kids were screwing around trying to catch muskrats

6)  For my dog when she breaks

 

My point is the "cage" could have been used for anything which includes cheating.  How it was handled/addressed by a minority few was unfortunate and reflects on us all...

  
Chris Lambert said:

Seems about time this thread should take a different path. There has been a ton of criticism towards the guys who think it was a cage used for cheating. This forum seems to be built of a group of intelligent individuals who all share a common interest that we all want to protect. How about we agree to disagree but let's hear some thoughts rather than criticism. I would love to hear from the group that thinks the cage was for something else. What else could this cage be used for???

I don't like the term witch hunt here.  It implies that if you want a tool to be used to identify if cheating took place, or to deter cheating from happening in the future, then you are out to get someone in particular. 

To Chris Lambert's question, and it is a good one...I don't know.  It certainly looks like a fish trap used for cheating more than it looks like something used for anything else. 

That said, images can be deceiving and draw an emotional response rather than anything well thought out. 

If you were going to cheat, would your "trap" look like that, and would you place it in that area?  I would bet I can't find a single person who would answer yes to both of those questions...or maybe even one of them.

The reality is that to cheat in a 5 fish tournament with off limits on a body of water where 25lbs is very possible and big fish can exceed 8lbs....don't you have to question how much work, luck, and execution it would take to cheat, get away with it, and then actually win in order to justify the risk?

To me, a successful cheater in NWBass is like a unicorn.   You'd have to be the biggest dumbass in the world to think the risk is worth the reward, but then incredibly intelligent to pull it off.  You'd also have to be a very very good angler to catch fish big enough to get a win, and have a partner that has a complete lack of a conscience just as you do...and that conscience could never grow, even in the face of stealing money from your friends, peers, mentors..etc.  

So again the cheater cocktail is:  Dumbass, Brilliant, Skilled Angler, Partner with no Soul.

Recipe for cheating success:  Tolerate huge amounts of risk, work hard to catch big fish, execute full-proof plan, cross fingers that my partner doesn't grow a soul.  Hope that huge bag of cheat fish are big enough to win in water where 25lbs is probable, and 8lb bigfish is possible.

BBT is a different animal, but I've come full circle on this, and I just don' think such a brilliant dumbass exists.  If they do, then they will get complacent and they will get caught red handed.  At this point I think Polygraphs should be used for validating protests and thats about it.

And I thought the Amber theory had a chance.

Jake Anderson said:

I don't like the term witch hunt here.  It implies that if you want a tool to be used to identify if cheating took place, or to deter cheating from happening in the future, then you are out to get someone in particular. 

To Chris Lambert's question, and it is a good one...I don't know.  It certainly looks like a fish trap used for cheating more than it looks like something used for anything else. 

That said, images can be deceiving and draw an emotional response rather than anything well thought out. 

If you were going to cheat, would your "trap" look like that, and would you place it in that area?  I would bet I can't find a single person who would answer yes to both of those questions...or maybe even one of them.

The reality is that to cheat in a 5 fish tournament with off limits on a body of water where 25lbs is very possible and big fish can exceed 8lbs....don't you have to question how much work, luck, and execution it would take to cheat, get away with it, and then actually win in order to justify the risk?

To me, a successful cheater in NWBass is like a unicorn.   You'd have to be the biggest dumbass in the world to think the risk is worth the reward, but then incredibly intelligent to pull it off.  You'd also have to be a very very good angler to catch fish big enough to get a win, and have a partner that has a complete lack of a conscience just as you do...and that conscience could never grow, even in the face of stealing money from your friends, peers, mentors..etc.  

So again the cheater cocktail is:  Dumbass, Brilliant, Skilled Angler, Partner with no Soul.

Recipe for cheating success:  Tolerate huge amounts of risk, work hard to catch big fish, execute full-proof plan, cross fingers that my partner doesn't grow a soul.  Hope that huge bag of cheat fish are big enough to win in water where 25lbs is probable, and 8lb bigfish is possible.

BBT is a different animal, but I've come full circle on this, and I just don' think such a brilliant dumbass exists.  If they do, then they will get complacent and they will get caught red handed.  At this point I think Polygraphs should be used for validating protests and thats about it.

I havent ruled it out... But Mike Bess wanted her good reputation untarnished.

Maybe Dana took a page out of the ISIS handbook and got ahold of some Liberals!

Image result for isis drowning

I would never weigh in a Liberal. They look like sunken belly post spawners.

Jon Sessler said:

Maybe Dana took a page out of the ISIS handbook and got ahold of some Liberals!

Image result for isis drowning

First off the cage would be full and I would place it about 4' deeper!
 
Jon Sessler said:

Maybe Dana took a page out of the ISIS handbook and got ahold of some Liberals!

Image result for isis drowning

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