Friday, January 30, 2015

Monroe and Poche Get More Than Slap on the Wrist from BASS.

At the recent Southern BASS Open on Lake Toho, Ish Monroe and Keith Poche got into a verbal and minor physical scrap. After their investigation, BASS has announced their disciplinary penalties. Public response to this incident has been huge and options vary greatly depending on who is writing or speaking. Many claim that when viewed under a sporting context like hockey or football, this is a very minor event. Others are discussed with both anglers and demand their heads on pikes. Yesterday, BASS made their announcement. 
Here is their statement:
B.A.S.S. announced today that it has completed its investigation of an incident January 16 involving two professional anglers, Ish Monroe of Hughson, Calif., and Keith Poche of Pike Road, Ala., during the Bassmaster Open tournament on Lake Tohopekaliga, Fla. After interviewing both anglers as well as many of the numerous eyewitnesses of the incident, B.A.S.S. has imposed the following penalties, which are covered in the current Angler Code of Conduct:
For unsportsmanlike conduct, Monroe has been fined $500, the maximum amount for a first offense. In addition, he has been suspended from participation in all Bassmaster Opens for 2015. He already had been disqualified from the Southern Open on Lake Tohopekaliga, forfeiting any payouts he would otherwise have earned.
Also for unsportsmanlike conduct, Poche has been fined $250, the minimum amount for a first offense. In addition, he has been suspended from participation in Bassmaster Opens in the Southern Division for 2015. He, too, had earlier been disqualified from the Southern Open in Florida.
 “Both Keith Poche and Ish Monroe have cooperated fully in our investigation of the incident, and they have expressed regret for their roles in it,” said Bruce Akin, B.A.S.S. CEO. “While conflicts occur frequently in other sports, we hold bass fishing professionals to a higher standard, particularly when the safety of participants is involved. We believe the penalties imposed under the Angler Code of Conduct agreement are appropriate and fitting in these circumstances.”
Akin also noted that B.A.S.S. has refunded the entry fees of the co-anglers paired with Monroe and Poche on January 16 in consideration for the effect the incident may have had on their fishing success.

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