69 reports of law enforcement contacts at Eelpout Festival
Cass County Sheriff Tom Burch reports the weekend activities associated with the Eelpout Festival held on Leech Lake in
Walker were safe, yet eventful for local law enforcement.
A total of 69 Eelpout related incidents were reported to the Sheriff’s Office. These events varied from medicals to
assaults to public assists and property related crimes. On Friday night, a tandem axle fish house and nearby pickup
accidently caught fire and was reported to be a total loss. Fortunately no injuries occurred and the Walker Fire
Department assisted at the scene. On Saturday night, a stolen pickup was reported taken from the lake. Officers
quickly located the pickup south of Walker and a juvenile male was taken into custody. Also on Saturday evening, the
Sheriff’s Office received a report of a medical situation at the Chase on the Lake tent. Responding officers located an
unresponsive party inside the tent. Officers and North Ambulance performed CPR and lifesaving efforts were initiated.
The party was transported via Air Care to a Fargo hospital.
In addition to regular and lake/event area patrols, the Sheriff’s Office with its Toward Zero Death and local Police
Department partners, including Walker PD, Lake Shore PD, Pine River PD, Longville PD and Pike Bay PD logged 112.25
hours patrolling roadways for and processing impaired drivers. 115 traffic stops were conducted with 13 people being
taken into custody for DWI and other infractions including underage consumption.
The Sheriff’s Office spent a considerable amount of time enforcing litter and policing garbage and disposal methods
at many campsites. A very large majority of the lake campsites were responsible and receptive to the Sheriff’s Office,
Environmental Services, event organizers and community’s efforts to keep the lake ice clean.