OSP: Workers cleaning up 5K pounds of rotten mink

OSP: Workers cleaning up 5K pounds of rotten mink
Photo of rotten mink carcasses courtesy Oregon State Police.

BROOKINGS, Ore. -- State police say a commercial crab boat captain was cited for first degree water pollution for dumping about 5,000 pounds of rotten mink carcasses into the Port of Brookings.

Authorities say that during the night of April 1 and into the early morning hours of April 2, captain of the Ann Me, Charles Case, 48, of Brookings, and his crew, dumped the mink carcasses into the port waters.

The port manager contacted law enforcement and the Department of Environmental Quality to investigate and determine who was responsible.

State police say that Port of Brookings workers retrieved about 3,000 pounds of bloated, floating carcasses out of the water.

Officials say the workers were forced to wear protective clothing and masks lined with Vicks vapor rub to combat the smell.

State police say clean up is continuing as the mink continue to float to the surface.

On April 5, an OSP Fish & Wildlife trooper contacted Case and the boat's crew for interviews.

Troopers cited Case for first degree water pollution, which is a Class B felony in the State of Oregon.

Case will have to appear in Curry County Circuit Court, state police said.