Drugs along the Perdido, Boating and Fishing Violations: NorthEscambia.com
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement reported to the FWC the following recent activity:
Officers Waters and Herr were patrolling the Perdido River Aea Wildlife Department and found three recreational groups using marijuana and methamphetamine. Two people were charged with using medical marijuana in a public place, one was charged with possession of cannabis, and two men were charged with possession of methamphetamine. One person was also arrested on two criminal warrants.
Officers Waters and Wehr checked a boat leaving Mahogany Mills Boat Ramp and the two subjects told them they had caught 50 Almaco cranes. When conducting a check on their cooler supplies, officers discovered that people had harvested 49 larger amberjacks ranging in size from 10.5 to 14.5 inches. The minimum size for larger amberjack is 34 inches and the bag limit is one fish. Both subjects were charged with grabbing the bag limit and larger amberjack.
Officer Ramos has concluded a five-month investigation into an abandoned vessel abandoned in Bayou Chico by an out-of-state resident who indicated he did not intend to remove the vessel from the water. Officer Ramos served a warrant for the individual’s arrest and the appropriate paperwork to remove the vessel from local waters. In addition to the arrest, the party responsible for the vessel will also be required to reimburse the State of Florida for the costs of removing the abandoned vessel after it is removed and destroyed.
Officer Ramos received a complaint about a fishing vessel operating hook and line recklessly near another diving vessel in the Gulf of Mexico on a natural coral reef. The dive vessel was displaying the divers flag correctly and it was clear that the captain of the offending vessel was aware that there were divers in the water. A verbal altercation ensued, then the fishing vessel quickly accelerated on board and made a series of sharp turns in the water above the divers before fleeing the scene. Officer Ramos was able to determine the vessel’s registration, then located and interviewed the vessel’s operator, who turned out to be a commercial charter boat captain operating a charter excursion with paying customers during the time of the crime. After gathering additional interviews with witnesses, Officer Ramos obtained an arrest warrant for reckless operation of a vessel.
Officer Ramos was on a joint enforcement agreement patrol and conducted a resource inspection of a vessel that was fishing offshore. A large grouper was discovered on board; However, the season for this species was closed when the fish were harvested. A report of illegal fishing was issued with the appropriate violation.
Officers Wilkinson and Ramos were on patrol and observed a recreational fishing boat returning from the Gulf of Mexico. Officers conducted a boat safety and resource check and discovered a juvenile gray triggerfish. The person who caught the illegal fish was issued an appropriate citation.
Santa Rosa County
Officers Ramos and Ates were on night patrol and observed two people laughing and trying to catch flounder. The fishing vessel did not display the required navigation lights. Officers conducted a boat safety and resource check and asked people if they had any fish. One person replied that they had a flounder and showed it to the officers, meaning it was the only fish on board. Officer Ramos continued the investigation and discovered that the subjects were also in possession of a red drum that they had played, which is an illegal method of taking the species. Officer Ates issued the subject with an appearance notice for red drum and a warning for a navigation lights violation.
Officers Ramos and Ates were on night patrol and observed two people laughing and trying to catch flounder. The vessel they were using did not display the required navigation lights. Officers conducted a boat safety and resource check and asked people if they had any fish. One of the people replied that they had a flounder and took it from a small cooler and showed it to the officers, meaning it was the only fish on board. Officer Ramos continued the investigation and discovered that the subjects were also in possession of a red drum that they had played, which is an illegal method of harvesting this species. Officer Ates issued the subject with an appearance notice for red drum and a warning for a navigation lights violation.
This report represents some of the events dealt with by the FWC during the time period; However, it does not include all actions taken by the law enforcement department. Information provided by FWC.
Image from NorthEscambia.com.