FWC Division of Law Enforcement Weekly Highlights For Cases In Brevard County
By Space Coast Daily // September 21, 2023
FWC OFFICERS NAIL POACHERS
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The following report highlights some cases the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission handled in Brevard County over the past week but does not include all actions taken by the Division of Law Enforcement.
■ Officer Specialist Balgo observed an individual fishing along Haulover Canal. While conducting a resource inspection, the individual stated he had not caught any fish. Officer Balgo observed a stringer tied to the rocks near the individual.
The stringer contained several fish attached including several undersized mangrove snapper. The individual was cited accordingly.
■ Officer Specialist Balgo observed two individuals along State Road A1A with equipment commonly used to harvest saw palmetto berries. The individuals fled from him when he tried to contact them. After searching the area, Officer Balgo located the two subjects and two large bags of illegally harvested saw palmetto berries.
The individuals had been cited several times for the same offense. The individuals were placed into custody and booked into the Brevard County Jail.
■ Officers Hedgepeth and Snyder were conducting boating safety patrols in the Banana River when they noticed a fishing vessel in the corner of an area. After brief observation, a resource inspection was conducted on the vessel.
The officers found the subject to be in possession of two redfish during a closed season, six undersized mangrove snapper, one undersized black drum, and one undersized sheepshead. The individual was cited accordingly.
■ Officer St. Martin was on foot patrol when he noticed a several individuals throwing cast nets. The individuals split into two different groups. Officer St. Martin conducted a resource inspection on each group. An individual from the first group tried running with the fish but Officer St. Martin was able to get the fish before they were discarded.
Officer St. Martin apprehended three individuals from the group, however, three others got away. Officer Hopkins arrived on scene and apprehended the other subjects and they were arrested. Officers St. Martin and Hopkins finished the resource inspection, and it yielded multiple violations.
The individuals were in possession of 12 undersized and out-of-season snook, two undersized redfish that were out of season, 17 undersized mangrove snapper, three undersized mutton snapper, eight undersized sheepshead, and one bonefish. All fish were harvested by cast net. Violations were cited accordingly.
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