72-year-old Alfred Mead sentenced to jail time for cheating during fishing competition

Categories: Crime, Fishing
AlfredMead.jpg
Mead tried to win a Park Rapids fishing competition with the help of fish he caught on another lake.
Alfred "Tom" Mead will be spending a week of his twilight years behind bars after he was sentenced to a week in jail for cheating during the Park Rapids American Legion Community Fishing Derby last February.

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Mead, 72, was busted trying to sneak two live northern pike he'd caught on another lake onto Fish Hook Lake during the competition. He falsely claimed he caught the two during the derby in hopes of winning the grand prize, which was a $10,000 Ice Castle fish house.

The Park Rapids Enterprise, citing a criminal complaint, reports that Mead told the officer who busted him, "What can I say? I got caught. God told me not to do it but I did it anyway."

The Enterprise reports that "a trail of suspicion has followed Mead for years." Though he's won a number of fishing competitions in the Park Rapids area, he's been convicted of two separate fishing-related offenses since 2009: fishing over the limit and fishing with illegal hooks.

As Mead was being escorted off the ice by the Hubbard County Sheriff after he was caught cheating last winter, the crowd serenaded him with a chant of, "Cheater!" the Enterprise reports.

Mead pleaded guilty to a felony charge of theft by swindle.

"Your conduct had a major impact on [the fishing tournament]" Judge Robert Tiffany told him, according to Forum Communications. "I hope you realize the seriousness of your conduct."

Cheating "takes the enjoyment and joy out of it for those who bring their kids," the judge continued.

A week in jail is no fun, but perhaps worse is another component of Mead's punishment -- he's lost his hunting and fishing privileges for two years in Hubbard County and all adjacent counties, the Bemidji Pioneer reports, and he's also banned from all fishing contests for four years.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.

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13 comments
MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

Aren't Republican'ts some nasty people?

Arkadi
Arkadi

Well, that's crappie. I'm glad they found him gillty; jail will give him plenty of time to mullet over.

qwer
qwer

"theft by swindle"

May god have mercy on him

Sarah Proulx
Sarah Proulx

Good grief...jail time? Come on! The worst and right punishment would be to take away his lisence forever and ban him for life in competitions

Paige Benda
Paige Benda

I think they should be more worried about the fact that he is having active conversations with God...

Xan Xin
Xan Xin

Holy shit...what would have happened if I had said "have u a good fish" to a fisherman?

Grant Hobgood
Grant Hobgood

Ah yes, the fishing cheaters. Those guys...they had it coming!

Bob Alberti
Bob Alberti

But the guys who collapsed the world economy in 2008 are still free, and are now more wealthy than ever.

tastypastry
tastypastry

most definitely a white person crime.. but hey at least no one got robbed or killed.

qwer
qwer

@Sarah Proulx  Well, cheating to win several thousand dollars isn't exactly petty theft.

Fluffy Singler
Fluffy Singler

@tastypastry Like no one of another race ever cheats in a competition, ever uses steroids, ever does anything unethical to win.  Maybe the fishing contest is a "white person" thing, but cheating to win definitely crosses all racial lines.  

 And someone did get robbed.  The prize was said to be worth $10,000. 

 On the other hand, to the person who complained that they don't go after the bankers who crashed the economy, I agree. But this person's sentence was only a week in jail and some fines, so the punishment fit the crime.  Just because one crime hasn't been prosecuted doesn't mean NO crime should be prosecuted.  



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