News Releases

FWC charges 2 with harming sea turtle nest

News Release

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Media contact: Gary Morse, 863-227-3830

Two Englewood women were arrested June 21 on third-degree felony charges for knowingly disturbing a sea turtle nest.  At 2:30 p.m., Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) law enforcement officers and Charlotte County deputies arrested Juanita B. Schultz, (DOB 10/28/36) of 1230 Shoreview Dr., and Mary F. Cammarano-Richards (DOB 01/14/55) of 1230 Shoreview Dr. #2, Englewood.  Third-degree felony charges are punishable by up to five years in prison and/or fines of up to $5,000.

On June 14, the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office contacted the FWC's Division of Law Enforcement with information about someone disturbing the area over and around a sea turtle nest and pulling up signs and stakes marking the protected nest.

FWC Officer Ron Howard was assigned the case.  Howard found that signs and stakes marking the nest had been removed, and there were indications that the domed-nest mound had been leveled and the crawl had been raked.  Howard presented his findings to the Charlotte State Attorney's Office, who will prosecute the case.

Although this sea turtle nest was on private property, both state and federal laws protect sea turtles, their nests and eggs no matter where they occur. Even on a private beach, posting by authorities in the immediate area around a sea turtle nest is legal.  The informational posting at critical nest sites helps both private property owners and the public from running afoul of the law.

For more information on imperiled sea turtles and their plight, go to MyFWC.com/SeaTurtle.



FWC Facts:
Adult male black bears in Florida normally weigh between 250 and 400 pounds, with adult females normally weighing between 125 and 250 pounds.

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