First, we had cheating scandals in the world of Chess and then there were allegations about foul play in the professional poker world.
Well, just to prove that all good things truly do come in threes, there are now cheating allegations in the sport of fishing after explosive allegations were aimed at two fishermen at a competition on Saturday.
Chase Cominsky of Hermitage, Pennsylvania and Jake Runyan of Cleveland, Ohio believed that they had won the final 2022 event of the Lake Erie Walleye Trail season but a remarkable intervention by tournament director and police officer Jason Fischer saw the duo accused of inserting lead weights into their fish in order to fix the weigh-ins after the fishing had finished.
In footage that has since gone viral, Fischer can be seen slicing open the fish that the pair had caught (it should be noted that Cominsky is not in the video) and retrieving several lead weights and other fish filets which would have fixed the weight of the fish on the scales.
\u201cSerious Controversy in Pro fishing tournament as multiple-time winners caught stuffing lead weights and other fish filets in their fish to have the heaviest catch to win hundreds of thousands in prizes.\u201d
An angry mob can be seen and heard gathering around the incident and they vocally displayed their displeasure with some yelling "call the cops." Another can be heard claiming that Cominsky and Runyon had been "cheating for years" while another more calmly asked, "Don’t we need to file a police report?”
Fischer can also be heard telling Runyan to leave while the fisherman remains silent throughout the entire video.
Afterwards, Fischer issued a statement on the official LEWT Facebook page. He wrote: "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.
“I can’t think enough to post results, but congrats Tsczyko and French and TOY Hendricks and Ulmer. Same goes to the yak and open 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.”
Following this, their previous wins have now come under scrutiny.
In 2021 Cominsky won both the Blaster Walleye Fall Brawl and the Walleye Slam earning the Lake Erie Walleye Trail Championship as well as $306,000 in prize money.
The two then took a polygraph test after director Ryan Murphy gave the expensive Ranger Boat prize to second-place Ronald Masal. Speaking afterwards Ruynan said: "I knew we would pass the Walleye Slam test. And I knew we had to get legal counsel and fight our disqualification in the Fall Brawl. Our reputation means the world to us and we would never cheat.”
The pair are yet to issue a statement on the most recent allegations against them.
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