Kansas State Record Crappie Nullified after Weights Found in Fish

This week more details came out about the bizarre back pedaling of a white crappie formerly accepted as the state record in April of 2023 but was later vacated in October after some details came to light that showed the catch might not be legit. And just this week we got word from Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks as to what those speculated details were.

Bobby Parkhurst caught the white crappie in March of 2023 and submitted it for state record status at 4.07 pounds. And, in April of 2023, Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks accepted his application for the state record. Shortly thereafter, KDWP received an eyewitness tip that said that same fish had been weighed at a local shop at a 3.73 pounds, and they were confused as to why that fish was now being submitted as a heavier fish for the state record.

The KDWP went to Parhurst’s home and asked to examine the fish as he still had it in his feezer. The fish was voluntarily submitted and KDWP officials scanned the fish with a metal detector and got a ping. So they sent the fish off to the Topeka Zoo where it was x-rayed and found to have two large bearings in it.

“To preserve the integrity of the Kansas Parks and Wildlife Department’s (KPWD) state record program, KDWP Game Wardens met with the angler who voluntarily presented his fish for re-examination,” KDWP spokeswoman Nadia Marji said. “When staff used a handheld metal detector to scan the fish, the device detected the presence of metal.”

The KPWD nullified the angler’s catch as a state record, reinstated the previous record from 1964 that weighed 4.02 pounds and have since made the fish available for return to the angler.

They also forwarded the case to the Shawnee County District Attorney who has decided not to prosecute because the evidence is insufficient to meet their burden of proof at trial.

Parkhurst was implicated and charged with five felonies in Kansas since 2019, according to public records and was recently convicted of felony identity theft last October which he was just sentenced 18 months probation for in February.


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