Men charged after being caught with 40 bass in their boat, authorities say

A file photo of a smallmouth bass. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

ERIN, Tenn. (AP) — Authorities say two Tennessee men face several charges after they were found in possession of fish well beyond the legal limit.

The Leaf Chronicle reports authorities responding to a trespassing report arrested 35-year-old Mark Steven Jones and 28-year-old Robert Earl Wilridge on Saturday. The two were found with 35 smallmouth bass, three largemouth bass, two red-eye bass and two channel catfish in a cooler in their canoe.

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Officer Nick Luper says the statewide limit for black bass — a category that includes smallmouth and largemouth bass — is five per person. He said the amount of fish caught and kept along the 2-mile stretch of creek can have “devastating impacts.”

The reporting landowner told sheriff’s deputies the two mooned him and tipped over a portable toilet when confronted.

It’s unclear if they have lawyers.

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