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Reporting Violations

TIP-MONT allows informants to remain anonymous if they wish. We are dedicated to protecting the identity of informants, even to the point of not continuing with the prosecution if by doing so it would compromise the promise of anonymity. This trust, in combination with a reward for accurate information leading to an apprehension, will hopefully encourage cooperation by those who have information and might not come forward otherwise.

When an informant calls TIP-MONT they will be asked how contact can be made to arrange for follow-up information or to make reward payments. Another option is to arrange for the informant to initiate the call-back.

Of course, a successful investigation and prosecution often depends on informants to provide additional clarifying or follow-up information, sign sworn statements or appear in court if necessary. We hope to continue to receive information from concerned individuals who are willing to give their names. Even if an informant does give us their name it will remain completely confidential unless the informant authorizes its release.

Types of violations to report

Violations of laws serioulsy affect fish, wildlife, state parks, and forests in Montana. The following examples of vandalism or violations cause habitat destruction, depletion and destruction of fish and wildlife populations, as well as destruction of natural resources.

  • poaching
  • hunting or fishing out of season
  • trespassing
  • exceeding bag limits
  • nonresident purchasing resident licenses
  • vehicles in nonmotorized areas
  • littering
  • theft or destruction of natural resources
  • violations of Block Management Area rules

Gather facts about a violation before calling

When you become aware of a violation, try to observe and gather as many facts as possible. Write the details down. Above all, stay calm and don't worry - when you call TIP-MONT, a trained operator will ask you the questions necessary to get all the facts you gathered.

  • Date and time-Note the date and time of the violation, as well as when you report it.
  • Location-Note the geographic location, road name, county, town, city, or landmarks.
  • Vehicle Description-If there was a vehicle, boat, canoe, OHV, or any other identifiable mode of travel involved or near the scene, please provide as much information as possible, most importantly try to get a license plate number, or boat hull numbers. To describe a vehicle as a "red pickup with a gun rack in the back window" doesn't narrow the field much here in Montana¬Ö but to notice a dent in the door, or a chrome roll bar, or a broken antenna or tail light will help identify that vehicle from others that would otherwise match the same description. Bumper and window stickers are another common but unique identifying marker.
  • Description of person(s) involved-Do you know or can you reasonably get their name, address and telephone number? If possible, note the violator's weight, height, hair color, eye color, age, and description of clothing. It may be helpful to think "what makes this person unique, or different from someone else that would match the same general description?" Maybe the person has a particularly short, thick neck, rather than just "heavyset"; or a thin, sparse moustache, rather than just "moustache;" or tinted, wire frame glasses, rather than just "glasses".
  • Details of violation-What fish, wildlife, heritage site, state park or other resources were involved? What happened to them? Where are they now?
  • Witnesses-Give their names, addresses, phone numbers or any additional information, as described above that can help identify or locate them.
  • Physical evidence-What and where is it? Will it be moved soon? If so, when and where to? Unless there is imminent danger that physical evidence will be irrecoverably lost or destroyed, DO NOT attempt to move, collect, touch or even get near it. Doing so may "taint" the evidence making it inadmissible in court, or destroy other significant evidence that a trained investigator will know to look for.

Remember, NEVER approach or attempt to apprehend a suspect.

Report the violation

Call 1-800-847-6668 or contact the nearest Game Warden or Fish, Wildlife & Parks office as soon as possible. This toll-free number is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Trained staff will take your call, receive the information you supply, and immediately pass it on to the nearest warden or agency with jurisdiction. All calls are important, however, calls concerning violations in progress increase the chances of violators being caught and convicted.

If it does not require immediate attention, you may also report the violation online.

Whether you call TIP-MONT, the nearest warden, or submit the violation online, unless you state otherwise you can be assured of complete confidentiality or anonymity.

Anonymous Reports

Anyone who provides information may remain anonymous. A unique identification number will be assigned to each anonymous report and used to identify your call for any future communications. You must retain this number if you wish to claim your reward.

Rewards

If the information you have provided leads to an arrest, you could be eligble for a cash reward up to $1,000.