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Fishermen furious after weights found in cheating angler’s fish, tournament video shows

The angler is one of two men busted at the Lake Erie Walleye Trail tournament on Sept. 30. They would have walked away champions, if the event organizer, Jason Fischer, hadn’t decided to take a closer look at their catch.

Walleye tournament video still
A still image taken from an Oct. 1 YouTube video that appears to show lead weights and fish fillets stuffed into walleyes to win more money with higher weights.
Still captured by InForum
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A crowd of outraged fishermen gathered around an angler caught cheating at an Ohio fishing tournament, the evidence literally spilling out in front of everyone, video shows.

The angler is one of two men busted at the Lake Erie Walleye Trail tournament on Sept. 30. They would have walked away champions, if the event organizer, Jason Fischer, hadn’t decided to take a closer look at their catch.

In the video, Fischer is seen gutting walleye reeled in by competitors Jake Runyan and Chase Cominsky, WKYC reported. The video of the weigh-in contains graphic language.

The crowd hurls expletives and threats as Fischer pulls metal weights and fish filets from the duo’s fish, added weight intended to fool the scale. The alleged cheaters say nothing.

Walleye tournament video still
A still image from an Oct. 1 YouTube video pictures lead weights next to the fish they were cut out of.
Still captured by InForum

Some yelled that the police should get involved. Others wondered how many times Runyan and Cominsky had done this, and how many big tournament prizes they had walked away with as a result.

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The two fishermen placed first in 2021’s Lake Erie Fall Brawl, and would have walked away with more than $100,000 in winnings, until they were disqualified because one of the men failed a polygraph test, the Toledo Blade reported.

It’s clear that some anglers had been harboring suspicions for a long time.

“Disgusted guys and gals, I’m sorry for letting you down for so long and I’m glad I caught cheating taking place in YOUR LEWT at the same time,” Fischer said in a Facebook post, congratulating the new winners.

“I hope you know now that when I say ‘you built this LEWT and I will defend its integrity at all costs’, I mean it. You all deserve the best,” Fischer said.

©2022 The Charlotte Observer. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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