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View Full Version : Woman photographed riding a manatee in Florida is arrested



Rockntractor
11-25-2012, 08:00 PM
A St. Petersburg, Fla., woman was arrested on a misdemeanor warrant Saturday after being photographed two months ago riding a manatee.

Florida's Manatee Sanctuary Act protects the endangered sea mammal and says in part, “It is unlawful for any person at any time, by any means, or in any manner intentionally or negligently to annoy, molest, harass, or disturb or attempt to molest, harass, or disturb any manatee.”

Ana Gloria Garcia Gutierrez, 53, was taken into custody without incident at a Sears department store where she works, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

The incident first came to the public's attention when Sheriff Bob Gualtieri held a news conference on Oct. 2 and asked for help in identifying the woman photographed riding the manatee at nearby Fort De Soto Park in late September.

Gutierrez has admitted touching the endangered sea mammal, the sheriff's office said. She told deputies that she was new to the area at the time and didn't know it was illegal to touch a manatee. The manatee was not hurt.

The maximum penalty is a $500 fine and six months in jail. Gutierrez was released on $1,500 bail, the Associated Press reported.
http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-woman-riding-manatee-florida-arrested-20121124,0,6247205.story

Oh the hugemanatee!

SaintLouieWoman
11-25-2012, 09:41 PM
The problem with this is the number of swim with the manatee programs here. I can see how it can be confusing.

At the marine mammal facility where we volunteer, we often get into discussions with tourists about not touching manatees or dolphins that they might encounter in the wild. But then they talk about paying to do the swim with the manatees or dolphin programs.

Somehow they need to draw the line and either stop those programs or stop prosecuting people. Personally, I think they should leave those poor animals alone. There was a dolphin named Beggar who died here recently. When they necropsied him, they found a number of obsturctions in his intestines and numerous boat strike marks.

There's a lovely little park/beach/picnic spot on North Lido Beach. A few weeks ago SR and I were eating a picnic lunch there. A raccoon came within a few feet to beg. We talked to a ranger and said the animals are getting to be a nuisance, taught by people feeding them.

A general rule is to leave wild animals alone, don't feed them, touch them. It could contribute to their becoming nuisance animals and being relocated or killed.

djones520
11-25-2012, 09:49 PM
When I lived in Florida we had pet squirrels. They'd climb right up your legs to get food. Dolphins were no strangers to us either. Everytime we took a boat out on Choctawhatchee Bay, we'd run into a bunch of them. They'd come up and check us out. Never let us touch them though.

Florida certainly had more "tame" wild animals than anywhere else I've lived.

Hawkgirl
11-25-2012, 10:48 PM
Ah yes, I recall sharks circling our boat when I belonged to the Boat club a couple of years ago, fun times...I never had the urge to ride one, however.

Starbuck
11-26-2012, 12:29 AM
....... in any manner intentionally or negligently to annoy, molest, harass, or disturb or attempt to molest, harass, or disturb......
That just about covers everything including looking at them with binoculars.......................Manatee! Look away!!



The maximum penalty is a $500 fine and six months in jail. Gutierrez was released on $1,500 bail,
No kidding. A 1500$ bail, so she can come back and get fined 500$. Maybe it makes sense; sure looks funny.:smile-new:

Tecate
11-26-2012, 08:12 AM
http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i228/Loveways/1362599_02bcdea730.jpg

Odysseus
11-27-2012, 01:32 AM
Ah yes, I recall sharks circling our boat when I belonged to the Boat club a couple of years ago, fun times...I never had the urge to ride one, however.

If I ever wanted to ride a shark, I'd marry a Kardashian. :evil-grin:

obx
11-27-2012, 11:02 AM
Those things are delicious.

Novaheart
11-27-2012, 02:07 PM
When I lived in Florida we had pet squirrels. They'd climb right up your legs to get food. Dolphins were no strangers to us either. Everytime we took a boat out on Choctawhatchee Bay, we'd run into a bunch of them. They'd come up and check us out. Never let us touch them though.

Florida certainly had more "tame" wild animals than anywhere else I've lived.

I've got a rattlesnake in the back yard that will let you pet him once.

dixierat
11-28-2012, 11:15 PM
When I lived in Florida we had pet squirrels. They'd climb right up your legs to get food. Dolphins were no strangers to us either. Everytime we took a boat out on Choctawhatchee Bay, we'd run into a bunch of them. They'd come up and check us out. Never let us touch them though.

Florida certainly had more "tame" wild animals than anywhere else I've lived.

You must've never met up with our gator's, snakes, or Outlaw bikers. :)