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Report All Poaching (RAP) was created by legislation in 1980 as a result of the public's concern over the detrimental effects of poaching in Michigan. It established a toll-free, 24-hour law enforcement hotline (1-800-292-7800) that enabled citizens to report fish and game violations and provided for the creation of a reward program for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of poachers.
The numbers are impressive. From 2000 through 2006, for example, the RAP hotline received 198,669 telephone calls resulting in 45,592 complaints generated. During that same period, rewards totaling $116,775 were awarded to 415 individuals.
The nerve center for this activity is the DNR Law Enforcement Division's Communications Center in Lansing where highly trained and skilled dispatchers are ready to assist conservation officers and citizens 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The dispatchers receive complaint calls, enter them into a complaint-tracking database, and quickly relay that information to a conservation officer in the field much in the same manner as a 9-1-1 dispatch center relays information to local police.
Dispatchers provide for superior officer safety through effective communications. In addition, dispatchers provide assistance to the general public, state, federal, and local agencies in emergency and non-emergency situations regarding the use of Michigan's natural resources.