The following is an official statement from Keith Poche regarding the Lake Toho Southern Open incident involving Ish Monroe that occurred Friday, Jan. 16, 2015.
First, I would like to apologize to everyone who has been affected by this unfortunate circumstance, including family, friends, fans, my co-anger, competitors, sponsors and B.A.S.S. I am fortunate to be a member of the professional fishing community and I am very disheartened that this incident took place.
To clarify my account of the incident, I regrettably misjudged the weather environment and how it would affect the momentum of my vessel. Once I bumped into the competitor’s boat, I realized immediately I made a mistake. I expressed my apologies to the competitor for the situation I caused. The next reaction I had was to protect myself from harm as the competitor entered my vessel and I was being pushed toward the water. Once I regained my poise, I proceeded to tournament officials as required by the tournament rules. I am thankful that I didn’t get seriously hurt from my competitor's actions.
Once the incident was reported to the tournament director, the next step I took was contacting and reporting the incident to local authorities and medical officials. I want to be clear to everyone that I did not press charges against Mr. Monroe but only provided details of the incident.
The sport of bass fishing doesn’t need this type of media, but we must follow the same protocol we would with similar circumstances that occur in everyday life.
Again, my deepest regrets this occurred and I express my apologies to everyone involved including Ish Monroe.