The Meatheads of the Week

0
352

NORTHWEST REGION

 

CASES

 

OKALOOSA COUNTY

 

Officers Corbin and Pifer were on vessel patrol conducting boating safety and resource inspections in the Destin Pass and Crab Island areas and saw a vessel in violation of the idle speed/no wake zone area. The operator was instructed three times to place his vessel in neutral. The operator kept shifting the boat’s throttle, but it remained in gear. During the boating safety inspection, the operator exhibited signs of impairment and was asked to perform field sobriety tasks which showed indicators of impairment. He was arrested for BUI transported to the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Station where he refused to provide a breath sample. He was then transported to the Okaloosa County Jail where the intake process was completed.

 

Officers Pifer and Bartlett were on vessel patrol conducting boating safety and resource inspections at the Destin Pass and saw a vessel in violation of the idle speed/no wake zone. When Officer Pifer was addressing the idle speed violation, the operator had a blank stare. During the safety inspection, the operator continued to show indicators of impairment such as slurred speech, watery/glassy eyes, and difficulty maintaining his balance. The operator also paused while trying to answer simple questions. The operated stated he had consumed 12 beers. He performed field sobriety tasks which showed indicators of impairment and was arrested for BUI. He was transported to the USCG Station where he provided a breath sample resulting in 0.151, 0.142 over the 0.08 legal limit. The operator was transported to the Okaloosa County Jail where the intake process was completed.

 

Officer Pifer was on vessel patrol conducting boating safety inspections just offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. saw a PWC in violation of a county ordinance, stopped the PWC and determined the vessel was rented from a local livery company. During the safety inspection, Officer Pifer discovered the livery failed to provide the required safety equipment. Officer Pifer followed the rented PWC back to the livery location and issued a notice to appear citation to the livery for failure to provide required boating safety equipment.

 

Officer Pifer was on vessel patrol conducting boating safety inspections near Crab Island when he received a request for assistance from the USCG regarding a Florida registered vessel. Officer Pifer arrived on the scene and initiated contact with the vessel owner. The registration decal had expired in 2009, and when the vessel owner provided the boat title to the officer, the date of sale was listed as October 2, 2015. The vessel owner was issued a notice to appear citation for failure to title the vessel in his name within 30 days after purchase.

 

Officer P. Rockwell was dispatched to a complaint of three bears digging in a dumpster off Mary Esther Cutoff. The officer located two dumpsters behind two local food businesses. The fencing surrounding the dumpsters was heavily damaged and the bears were using the dumpsters as a food source. Officer Rockwell educated the owner and manager of their respective businesses about their responsibilities in securing their garbage. One of the business owners was issued a non-compliance letter. Both were provided a bear brochure.

 

SANTA ROSA COUNTY

 

Officer Ramos was on vessel patrol in the Santa Rosa Sound and conducted a boating safety and resource inspection on a vessel he saw returning from offshore fishing. The officer discovered that the individuals had harvested regulated fish species that included six red snapper, three of which appeared to be under the legal 16‑inch size limit. Officer Ramos asked the boat operator how they measured their fish. The operator showed the officer a homemade ruler he constructed using tape. Officer Ramos showed the individual that his homemade tape ruler was an inch short compared to a certified metal ruler. The three, undersized snapper measured 15 inches each. The operator was cited accordingly.

 

Officer Ramos received information from a resident that an individual on a boat was harvesting oysters in a closed area in Blackwater Bay. After gathering details from the complainant, Officer Ramos saw the individual in an area closed for the harvesting of oysters. A boating safety and resource inspection was conducted and the individual admitted he was intentionally smashing oysters and their attached mollusks to attract fish that he could catch with fishing poles. The man received one boating safety warning and was charged for harvesting oysters in a prohibited area.

 

WASHINGTON COUNTY

 

Officer Gore was patrolling an area of Choctawhatchee River Wildlife Management Area (WMA) at Boynton Cutoff Landing for illegal fishing activity when he encountered two subjects in a parked car with a Georgia tag. During a casual conversation, he felt the male subject may have been impaired on drugs due to his erratic actions and speech. He asked the subject if there were any illegal substances in the vehicle. The subject reached into the center console and produced a pill bottle that contained methamphetamine and marijuana. A search incident to arrest revealed additional marijuana. The subject was transported to the Washington County Jail and booked for possession of methamphetamine and possession of less than 20 grams of cannabis.

 

 

NORTH CENTRAL REGION

 

CASES

 

ALACHUA COUNTY

 

Officer Reith responded to a possible alligator attack in Paynes Prairie State Park in the late afternoon. When Officer Reith arrived, the victim had not been attacked but his tripod and camera were sitting on top of a female’s nest. While taking pictures, his camera slid down the embankment and landed on the nest. Unaware that it was an alligator’s nest, the cameraman attempted to retrieve his equipment. The female alligator became protective of her nest and while the man was attempting to retreat, he landed in a briar patch and received minor scratches. Officer Reith was eventually able to retrieve his equipment with a rope and snatch hook. No charges were filed and no alligator attack report was necessary.

 

DUVAL COUNTY

 

While on state water patrol in the Fort George River, Lieutenant Bridwell and Officer Griffis saw a vessel being operated in a reckless manner. The vessel was operating in a narrow channel at a high rate of speed, weaving in and out of a high concentration of vessel traffic. The operator finally stopped after ignoring several commands to do so, and Officer Griffis detected possible impairment. Standardized field sobriety tasks were conducted and the operator was subsequently placed under arrest for BUI and reckless operation of a vessel. An occupant in the same vessel was arrested by Lieutenant Bridwell for disorderly intoxication and resisting without violence.

 

DIXIE COUNTY

 

Officer Allen received a report from dispatch that the USCG had a subject who was suspected of BUI detained in Steinhatchee. Officer Allen arrived and met the USCG officer the on scene. After the investigation, the subject was arrested for BUI and transported to the Dixie County Jail without incident.

 

Lieutenants Futch and Jones were working the opening of scallop season when they saw a vessel on plane pass near divers in the water. The operator was subsequently issued a notice to appear for reckless operation.

 

Lieutenant Futch, Officer Allen and K-9 Officer Wiggins received information about a deer carcass that was recently dumped in Dixie County. They arrived on the scene and saw fresh tire sign leaving the area. They canvassed the nearby neighborhood and found the same tire sign entering a driveway. They met with the resident and discovered a vehicle behind the house with the same tire sign. After a brief interview, the subjects admitted to killing a deer the day before and dumping the carcass. Charges for taking deer out of season will be direct-filed with the state attorney’s office.

 

BAKER COUNTY

 

Lieutenant Huff patrolled the Osceola WMA targeting illegal dumping and damage to state lands. He was concealed down a road closed to vehicular traffic when he saw a truck pull down the closed road and back up to a pit filled with water. The driver then got out of the truck and began to dump pallets onto the ground. The officer came out of his concealed location and made a stop on the vehicle. The driver stated that he thought it was okay to dump in the area. The subject was charged with misdemeanor dumping of litter.

 

LEVY COUNTY

 

Officer Fox was conducting safety and resource checks at the County Road 40 ramp in Yankeetown when he saw a male subject fishing with a rod and reel from the bank. He approached the fisherman and asked if he had any luck. The man admitted to catching and keeping two undersized mangrove snapper. Officer Fox issued a citation for possession of undersized mangrove snapper and returned the two snapper to the water.

 

Officer Johnston was on night patrol in Cedar Key near the Dock Street Marina when he saw a vessel arriving at the dock with no navigation lights on. When he approached the operator of the vessel, he smelled an odor of alcoholic beverage emanating from him. He also saw several empty beer bottles in the boat. Officer Johnston conducted a vessel safety inspection and then conducted standardized field sobriety tasks. The operator showed significant indicators establishing that he was impaired. Officer Johnston placed him under arrest for operating a boat while impaired and transported him to the Levy County Jail without incident.

 

Officer Willis was on patrol in the highway 40 area boat ramp in Yankeetown when he saw a white boat approaching the ramp with no boating safety decal. He contacted the boat operator and conducted a vessel safety inspection and then asked the occupants if they had caught any fish. They replied that they had caught several sharks. Officer Willis inspected the three, black-tip sharks in a cooler on board the vessel. He explained to the fishermen that the possession limit for sharks in Florida waters (recreational) is two per vessel or one per person, whichever is less. Officer Willis photographed the sharks for evidentiary purposes, seized one shark over the bag limit, and issued the operator of the vessel a citation for the limit violation. The seized shark was returned to the water and no further action was taken.

 

Officer Schulz was on land patrol in the Gulf Hammock WMA when he found an abandoned truck in the management area. The truck was not in running condition, had flat tires and contained garbage and debris in the bed. Officer Willis arrived on the scene to assist with the investigation. The officers determined through the investigation that the owner of the truck had been issued a warning for dumping the truck some eight months previously by another officer. When they contacted the owner, he admitted to not having removed the truck and said he would do so within a few days. The truck was removed by the owner later that week. Officers Schulz and Willis filed dumping charges through the Levy County State Attorney’s Office.

 

During a three-week period, Officers VanNess, Hilliard, Starling and Lieutenant Umhoefer conducted a RADAR speed measurement detail in Manatee Springs State Park. The manager made the request due to numerous complaints by park visitors regarding excessive speeding on the main road. The speed limit is posted at 15 MPH and after checking 227 vehicles, 36 citations were issued for excessive speed with several citations for more than double the posted speed. There was also one custodial arrest of a driver who was driving at a rate of 28 MPH. When the driver was stopped, he only had a State of Virginia ID card and no valid driver’s license. His Ohio license had been revoked and his Virginia driver’s license had been suspended. The subject knew he was in violation of the law by driving with full knowledge of his license being suspended or revoked.

 

DIRECTED CONSERVATION PATROLS

 

ALACHUA COUNTY

 

Officers are working area lakes for boating and resource compliance. With high water conditions on several lakes, flooding is occurring in the woodland areas along the edges. Bream species, including speckled perch, are being caught regularly. Bag limits and safety gear violations are being documented appropriately.

 

When time permits, officers are continuing to work local management areas for mudding and drinking alcohol while driving through the areas. Officers are issuing appropriate paperwork to individuals violating state laws.

 

Officers are working compliance issues in San Felasco and Devils Millhopper State Parks. Numerous warnings and citations have been issued to gain compliance for the honor pay systems.

 

RESCUES

 

CITRUS, DIXIE, LEVY AND TAYLOR COUNTIES

 

FWC K-9 officers and local FWC officers worked a detail focusing on resource violations in Citrus, Dixie, Levy and Taylor Counties. Several cases were made including resource, drugs and BUI. The officers also responded to three search and rescues with all missing parties being accounted for. The K-9s were deployed nine times during the detail to conduct resource inspections.

 

COMMUNITY ORIENTED POLICING

 

ALACHUA COUNTY

 

Officer Stanley attended a classroom event for forty pre-school children. He displayed a baby gator and answered some serious questions about what FWC officers do.

 

GILCHRIST COUNTY

 

Officers Butler and Wilder taught the law portion of a hunter education class in Trenton. The officers explained the importance of ethical hunting practices and how vital it is to the conservation of wildlife. They also answered questions about local WMAs, the FWC quota system and general hunting regulations.

 

 

NORTHEAST REGION

 

CASES

 

BREVARD COUNTY

 

Officers Eller, Miller and Graves inspected numerous crab traps being fished throughout the Indian River to ensure they were compliant with blue crab trap regulations. Numerous violations, such as no degradable material and untagged traps, were noted during these inspections. The owners of the traps were identified and cited accordingly.

 

Lieutenant Bonds, Officers Eller and Lejarzar conducted numerous off-shore fisheries inspections while on patrol in the Atlantic Ocean outside of Port Canaveral. A fisheries inspection of a vessel revealed an undersized dolphin. The subject was made aware of the violation and cited accordingly. The officers made another vessel stop to conduct an off-shore fisheries inspection and the vessel operator appeared to lack balance, had slurred speech, and had a strong odor of alcohol emitting from his breath. A five-gallon bucket of empty beer cans was visible on the deck and the operator appeared to be impaired. Officer Eller performed standard field sobriety tasks on the subject and, due to the subject’s poor performance, determined that he was impaired. The subject was arrested, charged for BUI and transported to the Brevard County Jail.

 

FLAGLER COUNTY

 

Officers Meade and Jones were observing a man in Crescent Lake using a steel rod to probe the bottom. After two hours, the man returned to the Shell Bluff Boat Ramp. Officers Meade and Jones preformed an inspection and found the subject to be in possession of an arrowhead. The arrowhead was tied to the steel rod so as not to be seen. The man was issued a notice to appear for the violation.

 

Officer Meade was working local boat ramps on Crescent Lake. Upon inspection, one fisherman was found to be over the limit of black crappie. A citation was issued for over the bag limit and the fish were released back to the water.

 

MARION COUNTY

 

K-9 Officer Simpson and Investigator Miller responded to the former Wild Waters portion of Silver Springs State Park in response to a trespass complaint. Upon arrival, they started a K-9 track where it was found that someone had cut the fence to enter the park. A short time later, the subject was located and arrested inside the attraction.

 

ST. JOHNS COUNTY

 

The crew of the OPV Osprey, the Fincat and assisting NOAA officers conducted patrols offshore from St. Augustine for turtle excluder device (TED) compliance. During one patrol, three commercial shrimp vessels were stopped without incident. A fourth commercial shrimp vessel was stopped, and the operator was arrested for fleeing to elude, two counts of battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting arrest with violence and interference with an FWC officer.

 

VOLUSIA COUNTY

 

Lieutenant Eason responded to Deleon Springs State Park to a report of a subject causing a disturbance. Lieutenant Yetter arrived on the scene to assist. The officers located the subject who was lying on the ground. After initially failing to follow instructions to stand up, he eventually stood up and began creating a disturbance again. He was subsequently arrested without further incident and booked into the Volusia County Jail.

 

COMMUNITY ORIENTED POLICING

 

ST. JOHNS COUNTY

 

Officer Ramsey assisted our Ocala Bear Biologist with a bear-wise presentation for the Nocatee homeowners in Ponte Vedra. One-hundred and forty residents attended the presentation.

 

 

SOUTHWEST REGION

 

CASES

 

CHARLOTTE COUNTY

 

Lieutenant Frantz was conducting an inspection of the Coral Creek Archaeological Site. He climbed to the top of the mound and found several tools and freshly dug holes. A suspect was standing there, by himself, in camouflage pants and a camouflage jacket. He had a metal detector and several tools for digging. Lieutenant Frantz read the suspect his Miranda rights. The suspect agreed to answer Lieutenant Frantz’s questions and stated he was there digging and looking for a lost ring. He was standing by an approximately 5-foot-deep by 2-foot-wide hole. The suspect was booked into Charlotte County Jail on two felony charges.

 

Officer Birchfield was working plain-clothes water patrol and conducted a fisheries inspection at a local boat ramp. When asked, the captain said he only caught one snapper. During the inspection, multiple fish fillets, which still had skin on, were located and identified as red grouper. The individual was issued a criminal citation for not landing fish in whole condition.

 

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY

 

Officers Gonzales and Berg were on land patrol in Ruskin when they noticed a man fishing off the US 41 bridge that crosses the Little Manatee River. During a resource inspection, they found that the man had caught and kept an undersized and out-of-season snook. The man was cited for possession of snook out of season and must appear in court for the violation.

 

Officers Gonzales and Berg were on land patrol around Kracker Avenue and US 41 when they stopped and performed an inspection on a fisherman who was leaving the area where he had launched. The subject told the two officers that he was in possession of a 27-inch red drum, but when the two officers measured the drum, it was 29 inches in length. The fisherman was cited for possession of oversized red drum and must appear in court for his violation.

 

While on ATV patrol on the Mosaic property near Fort Lonesome, Officers Godfrey and Baker noticed a suspicious truck and vessel trailer parked on the property with the doors open and no one in sight. The officers confirmed that the truck and trailer were stolen and had been taken from the Williams Park Boat Ramp a few days prior while the owner was out on his vessel. Numerous parts of the truck had been stolen and the suspects left the remaining parts of the vehicle. The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office was notified and took over the case.

 

While on land patrol in Tampa, Officer Martinez saw a suspicious vehicle in an area where no trespassing was allowed. Officer Martinez approached the subjects to educate them about the trespassing issue when he realized the car was running and the two occupants were passed out in the front seats. A subsequent investigation revealed the operator of the vehicle was impaired, and Officer Martinez found Xanax as well as drug paraphernalia in the car. The subject was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail for DUI, possession of a controlled substance, and driving without a valid license.

 

While following up on a case for operating a vessel without a hull identification number, Officer Phillippi learned the subject failed to appear in court and had a warrant for his arrest. Officers Phillippi and Ferguson then found the subject and arrested him on his outstanding warrant for failing to appear.

 

After stopping to assist a disabled vehicle on the side of the road in Tampa, Officers Phillippi and Ferguson learned that the operator had a warrant for her arrest for failure to appear in court for driving while license was suspended. The officers booked the subject into the Hillsborough County Jail and the vehicle was towed.

 

LEE COUNTY

 

Officers Price and Winton were on water patrol in Estero Bay when they saw two individuals wading and throwing a cast net. The officers found a cooler hidden in the mangroves nearby, and then attempted to approach them. As they approached the individuals, the one carrying the fish dumped them in the water. Officer Price jumped in the water and retrieved some of the fish only to determine they were all legal. The men later admitted the fish in the cooler were theirs, and a search of the cooler revealed four undersized permit. A misdemeanor citation was issued for the fish and an infraction was issued for no fishing license.

 

Officers Price and Winton conducted surveillance on an individual cast netting fish at Lover’s Key State Park. The officers witnessed the individual cast net fish and return to the shoreline before wading back out. The officers left the area to get a patrol vessel and when they returned, the individual was gone. The officers interviewed a group of people at the park and located a cooler with undersized permit hidden in the mangroves. The officers located the net fisherman and as they approached, his partner began dumping fish out of a bucket. Officer Price jumped in the water and retrieved the fish. Citations were issued for the permit violations and for failure to have a saltwater fishing license.

 

Officers Price and Winton were on patrol at Lover’s Key State Park when they saw a group loading a fishing boat onto a trailer. The officers approached the individuals to conduct a fisheries inspection and were told by the individuals that they had fish in their live well. The officers found an undersized spotted seatrout and over the bag limit of mangrove snapper in the live well. The captain of the vessel was issued a citation for the seatrout violation and a warning for the snapper violation.

 

Lieutenant Barrett was patrolling the Estero Bay Buffer Preserve when he spotted several four-wheel drive vehicles that had driven over a gate to access a closed area of the preserve. As Lieutenant Barrett approached the vehicles, they attempted to back down the trail away from his position. Lieutenant Barrett contacted Officers Fogle and Thompson to assist, and the three worked in unison to close off all exits to the area. The drivers of all the vehicles were stopped and cited appropriately.

 

MANATEE COUNTY

 

Officer Dalton was performing fisheries inspections on the South Skyway Fishing Pier. While on patrol, he stopped and performed an inspection on a man who had been fishing on the pier all day and was now leaving. During the stop, Officer Dalton discovered that the man was in possession of 13 grey mangrove snapper. The subject was charged for being over the possession limit of five mangrove snapper per day.

 

PINELLAS COUNTY

 

Officer Phillippi received a complaint about a reckless jet ski at Philippe Park in Safety Harbor and responded to the boat ramp. The officer contacted a subject on a jet ski, and found that he had two warrants for his arrest. Officer Phillippi arrested him for his outstanding warrants and cited him for the expired registration on his jet ski.

 

Officer Martinez coordinated a detail at the Skyway Fishing Piers in Manatee and Pinellas counties focusing on resource violations and enforcing state park rules. The detail was extremely successful and utilized FWC’s K-9 unit as well. Numerous resource citations were written for violations like undersized gag grouper, undersized cobia, and over the bag limit of mangrove snapper. In addition, there were many arrests made for DUI, driving while license was suspended, and possession of drugs.

 

DIRECTED CONSERVATION PATROLS

 

LEE COUNTY

 

Officers Winton and Price conducted panther enforcement in Estero. During their patrol, they stopped five vehicles for excessive speed-related violations. The officers issued three citations and two warnings. The highest recorded speed was 74 mph in the 45-mph zone.

 

COMMUNITY ORIENTED POLICING

 

PASCO COUNTY

 

Officer Pulaski conducted an outreach event at Centennial Middle School, where he educated approximately 90 children. He taught them the duties and responsibilities of an FWC officer, resource rules and regulations, and the important role of the FWC biologists and resource conservation.

 

PINELLAS COUNTY

 

Officer Godfrey attended the City of Oldsmar Kids Fishing Camp at Bicentennial Park. He spoke to the children about conservation, boating safety, living with alligators, and answered various other questions regarding local issues.

 

 

SOUTH REGION A

 

CASES

 

BROWARD COUNTY

 

Officers Ryan and Holcomb were on patrol near the 14th Street Boat Ramp and conducted a marine fisheries inspection on a vessel that had just returned from fishing.

With information gathered, Officer Holcomb issued two individuals citations for possession of undersized dolphin and possession of over the bag limit of dolphin. Thirty-two fish were seized as evidence.

 

Officers Ryan and Holcomb were dispatched to the Hillsboro Inlet in response to a complaint that individuals were in possession of undersized snapper. The officers arrived on the scene and conducted marine fisheries inspections on individuals fishing in the area. Officer Holcomb issued two individuals citations for possession of undersized mangrove snapper. Thirteen undersized mangrove snapper were seized as evidence.

 

OKEECHOBEE COUNTY

 

Officers Keen and Allen were checking water control structures for fishing activity when they encountered two subjects who had moored their boat at the S-84 structure near the Kissimmee River. The men had walked across the structure and were catching sunshine bass in the running water. They received notice to appear in court citations for trespassing on a South Florida Water Management District water control structure.

 

ST. LUCIE COUNTY

 

Captive Wildlife Investigator Douglas obtained an arrest warrant for an individual in possession of conditional species without a license. The subject was in possession of three Reticulated Pythons, two Burmese Pythons, and one Green Anaconda. The subject was arrested for twelve misdemeanor charges regarding the illegal possession of the snakes and other related violations. This individual has a history of captive wildlife violations and his bond was set at $240,000. The snakes were placed at a licensed facility. Investigators Holcomb and Patterson assisted with this investigation.

 

COMMUNITY ORIENTED POLICING

 

BROWARD COUNTY

 

Officers Brock and Holcomb participated in a conservation day at a Learning Center in Plantation. The officers spoke to children from 4 to12 years old. They spoke about environmental stewardship and explained the responsibilities of the FWC. They also brought some animals to display for educational purposes.

 

Lieutenant Laubenberger and Officer Banks attended the Change of Command ceremony for USCG Station Fort Lauderdale. They represented the FWC in addition to many other law enforcement agency representatives. The Change of Command ceremony is a time-honored military practice.

 

MARTIN COUNTY

 

Officers Cobo and Morrow conducted a boating safety and fishing class to campers at the Tanah Keeta Boy Scout Camp in Tequesta. The campers were educated on safety equipment, fishing regulations, water safety and were given the opportunity to ask questions.

 

OKEECHOBEE COUNTY

 

Officers Davis, Crosby, Alford, Lieutenants Strenth and Brown assisted the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Department’s two-week Summer Camp program. It consisted of fishing clinics and programs covering conservation, boating safety and hunter safety. Each person attending the camp was given a new fishing rod and reel and a small tackle box. A total of 90 kids were in attendance.

 

 

SOUTH REGION B

 

CASES

 

COLLIER COUNTY

 

Officers Yaxley and Kleis were on patrol on US 41 when they saw a truck towing a vessel. The officers saw several equipment violations on the trailer and conducted a traffic stop. When they approached the vehicle, they noticed fishing rods, tackle boxes, fish blood and scales. The driver of the truck stated that he had been fishing and allowed the officers to inspect his catch. Their inspection revealed 9 undersized mangrove snapper. The driver admitted that he had caught and kept the fish even though they were under the size limit. The fish were seized as evidence and the driver was issued the appropriate citations.

 

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) requested assistance from FWC regarding a subject who fled into Picayune Strand State Forest during a traffic stop on I-75. Deputies found approximately 35 pounds of marijuana in the trunk of the subject’s car and while placing him under arrest, he scaled the high fence separating the interstate from the forest and fled. Lieutenant Bulger and Officers Araujo, Curbelo, Reams, Yaxley, Tidwell, Polly, Osorio, and Pilot Simons assisted the CCSO deputies and K-9 in searching the forest via foot, UTV and buggy. The officers searched for several hours before the CCSO called off the search.

 

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY

 

FWC officers were on night-time water patrol when they saw a vessel heading north on the ICW and north of the Julia Tuttle. The vessel was being operated in a careless and reckless manner almost crashing into other vessels. The officers followed the vessel to inquire about the careless operation and to conduct a boating safety inspection. The operator eventually decided to slow down at the mouth of Little River. As a boating safety inspection was conducted, the officers noticed empty beer cans on the vessel’s deck. The operator had a strong odor of an unknown alcoholic beverage emitting from his breath, his speech was slurred and he admitted to drinking. Field sobriety tasks revealed that the operator’s normal faculties were impaired. The operator was placed under arrest for BUI and transported to the Miami-Dade County Jail.

 

MONROE COUNTY

 

Officer Sapp received a call from dispatch regarding a grounded vessel near Big Pine Key. The vessel operator was reported as being intoxicated, and nearly struck other vessels in the area. Officer Sapp located the vessel and conducted standard field sobriety tasks on the operator. The subject displayed numerous signs of impairment and was arrested for BUI. Once in jail, the subject’s breath alcohol level was found to be .158 and .151 two hours after the initial contact with Officer Sapp. The subject was charged with boating while normal facilities impaired, and for operating a vessel with a breath alcohol level at .08 or higher. The subject’s vessel was safely removed from the grounded position.

 

DIRECTED CONSERVATION PATROLS

 

COLLIER COUNTY

 

Officers Araujo, Arbogast, Yaxley and Kleis conducted speed enforcement in two Collier County Panther Zones. All drivers stopped were educated on the importance of the Panther Zones and public safety in regards to speed. In total the officers issued 11 citations and 8 warnings. The highest speeds noted by the officers were 86 mph and 95 mph in a 45 MPH zone.

 

MONROE COUNTY

 

Officers Way, Messier, and Lieutenant Peters conducted a 3-day offshore patrol of the Dry Tortugas. The patrol focused on the enforcement of state and federal fisheries, and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS). The officers conducted several vessel inspections of recreational and commercial vessels. The crew issued a total of 5 citations to various vessels for undersized fish and violating the Magnuson Stevens Act along with marine sanitation device violations. The crew also wrote several warnings during their patrol.

 

COMMUNITY ORIENTED POLICING

 

COLLIER COUNTY

 

Lieutenant Bulger was asked to participate in the Collier Sheriff’s Office Youth Leadership Academy Q&A Panel to begin the 2017 program. The program invites select incoming high school seniors and freshmen from around Collier County to participate in a week-long leadership course. The first day, leaders from area agencies and businesses are invited to answer student’s questions about their careers and leadership philosophies.

 

MONROE COUNTY

 

Officer Dube and his 11-year-old son attended the week-long Everglades Youth Conservation Camp (EYCC) in Palm Beach County. Officer Dube assisted staff throughout the week with instructing and teaching campers about the importance of boating safety as well as boating and fishing skills. The campers also learn archery, hunter and gun safety in addition to a long list of other activities. Officer Dube’s son was part of the “Wild Life Adventures” group and this is his third year attending the camp. The EYCC is part of FWC’s Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network (FYCCN) which is an initiative to introduce our youth to the conservation and the outdoors.

Bookmark and Share