A conversation with the Chief

By Larry Dablemont, Contributing Columnist
Posted 12/20/23

I continue to talk to Enforcement Chief Randy Doman of the Missouri Department of Conservation and try to pass on what he wants hunters and fishermen to know. I stress to many who doubt what I …

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A conversation with the Chief


I continue to talk to Enforcement Chief Randy Doman of the Missouri Department of Conservation and try to pass on what he wants hunters and fishermen to know. I stress to many who doubt what I report, that Doman is the supervisor of all conservation agents in the state and is the last word in rules and regulations and laws those agents enforce.

Before him was Larry Yamnitz who, before he retired, seemed to hint to me, when I was in his office talking about the problems some agents were creating, that he just felt he had no control over some of them, and just wanted to retire soon without problems.

I have written about those interviews with Larry Yamnitz, whom I sincerely believe was trying to do the right thing in his job. He actually did make an important change in what agents could do. There isn’t room here to go into that, but I urge you to read about that on my website, www.larrydablemontoutdoors. You can read about how Yamnitz had to deal with an agent who darn near killed an old man.

Doman reiterated again that no law or regulation requires anyone to take an agent to a place where they have hunted or killed a deer or turkey or squirrel or any thing else, legally or illegally taken. He says, and I quote, “A search warrant is needed for an agent to enter your home, automobile, barn or outbuilding, but even a search warrant does not require you to take an agent to show him where you have killed game of any kind.”

Every year, I hear some very uninformed, or downright ignorant, people telling me some of the most ridiculous rules they think agents can enforce. They believe conservation agents exceed the power of any law enforcement agents, even the FBI! You can’t believe the silliness I have been told because no one takes the trouble to know the truth.

Steelville hunter Jeff Ramori was wiser, and when he killed a wild turkey on October the first, he called it in as required and an agent showed up within a couple of hours demanding that he refused to take an agent to the spot where he had hunted.

“He had no search warrant,” Ramori said, “so I wouldn’t let him in my home, and he got mad. He stayed outside in my lawn for most of two hours. Then later he came back to my door and said he wanted to see the turkey, so I took it out of the freezer and took it outside to show it to him and he took it, refusing to give it back to me.”

What that amounts to is theft of property! Ramori should go to the local sheriff and file charges against the agent for theft. Then before he left, the agent wrote Ramori a ticket for “refusing to allow inspection.” The regulation or ‘MDC rule’ he cited allowing him to do that consisted of more than 40 numbers and letters. Jeff gave me those numbers and such a rule does not exist. He said that the ticket has still not been filed. What happens now?

I gave Doman all the information and he says he is initiating an investigation. He even thanked me for bringing the situation to his attention. Smile when you read that. I have been there before!

BUT… no one anywhere, including your local newspaper, nor me, nor the governor, can find out what the investigation includes or comes to find out. Doman says personnel matters are kept within his office and if the agent is reprimanded or absolved of his actions, NO ONE WILL EVER KNOW!!! He sure as heck cannot be fired!!!!

I assume that the only way anyone or any news source can find out about an agent breaking the law or violating a citizens rights is if he kills someone. I am not sure that will even produce any info from the MDC.

Randy Doman tells me he is eager to hear from anyone who feels that an agent has broken the law or violated someone’s rights. You can talk to him by dialing 573-751-4115. You will get a voice giving several numbers. After listening to that recording, dial 7 and you will get a lady wanting to know how she can help you. Tell her you need to speak to Chief Randy Doman. Leave a message and your number and if he doesn’t call you back, call me… 417-777-5227 and I will see to it you get to talk to him.

Hundreds of hunters have been forced to take an agent to the spot where they have killed a deer or turkey. Every one has received a citation! A year or so ago a man here in Polk County took a female agent to the place where he killed a deer and wound up paying a 200 fine for nothing. He and his wife had two small children and they had to give up the Christmas money for their kids to pay the fine. If you will look for the website I just gave you can read about others, many others

Anyone who has had that happen can find a lawyer and file a lawsuit against the MDC.

Many tell me that the government agency cannot be sued and that is part of the ignorance so many have, which allows them to be a target of unscrupulous agents who feel they are untouchable. The MDC, a few years ago was sued for a million dollars and lost. They paid it, and didn’t even appeal.

I will report in the future what has happened with Jeff Ramori and the agent by the name of Ryan Catron, who targeted him. I would report Catron’s side of the story, but he is not allowed to talk to me about it. The power of the MDC forbids the news media from getting that information.