A Fishy Scandal At Ohio Fishing Tournament
A pair of former fishing tournament champions were disqualified last week after forfeiting a $29,000 prize. The pair were eliminated from an Ohio fishing tournament after officials uncovered that the duo’s prize-winning fish were stuffed with lead weights and fish fillets.
The fishing tournaments draw many competitors from across the midwest including the states of Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio. The participants battle to see who can get the largest weight for a bucket of five walleyes captured in Lake Erie.
The team accused of cheating was led by Jacob Runyan and Chase Cominsky. They were set to win a prize of $28,760. The director of the Lake Erie Walleye Trail tournament, Jason Fisher told reporters he was suspicious when one team’s fish weighed almost double what they should.
Discovering the Deception
The fish in the bucket should have weighed approximately four pounds each but actually weighed at least 7 pounds individually. Fischer said, “I thought, there’s just no way. I could also hear the crowd grumbling, like ‘no way, there’s no way.'”
Several videos that have now gone viral on social media show the exact moment when Fischer discovers the cheating. In the footage, people can watch as he slices open one of the fish with a knife and pulls out a lead ball. The crowd is visually upset screaming “call the police.”
Both Runyan and Cominsky have competed in and won other tournaments. “As this is an open investigation, we have no further comment at this time,” said Stephanie O’Grady, media and outreach specialist at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
Written by Ebonee Stevenson
CNN: Cheating scandal at Ohio tournament rocks competitive fishing world; by Zoe Sottile
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