Editor’s note: This report has been updated to clarify details about the offense for which Gregory Scott King was cited.
An Inverness man’s attempt to keep raccoons out of his trash with steel traps led to state wildlife authorities ticketing him because he didn’t have a permit to do so.
On July 16, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Officer Ryan Crane went to Gregory Scott King’s home off of North Lonesome Road to investigate complaints the 40 year old was trapping raccoons, according to an FWC report released Tuesday.
Crane reported seeing a photograph of a raccoon caught in a trap that was hanging from King's fence. King’s family said the raccoon got trapped before it climbed up the fence, where it later became stuck and died.
Without a permit from FWC, it’s unlawful to trap nuisance wildlife that either damage property or predate. For more on nuisance wildlife permits, visit myfwc.com/license/wildlife/nuisance-wildlife-permits.
King told Crane he was trying to keep the mammal from getting into his garbage.
Crane issued King a citation for the unpermitted taking of nuisance wildlife with steel traps, a second-degree misdemeanor.
In lieu of going to court, King was adjudicated guilty of the offense before a judge on July 26 and paid a $318 fine, according to court records.
Ocala man cited for catching undersized fish off of Fort Island Trail
During an 8:15 pm. patrol on July 11, FWC Officer George VanNess spotted three people fishing from the side of West Fort Island Trail, and stopped to inspect their catch and licenses.
As he exited his vehicle, VanNess spotted 36-year-old Joseph Alfonso Natteal take a fish from a nearby cooler and throw it into some bushes, according to FWC’s report.
When VanNess asked Natteal what he threw, the Ocala man reportedly said he didn’t throw anything. VanNess was able to retrieve the discarded fish, an 11-inch red drum which was still moving and cold. To keep a red drum, it must be within 18 and 27 inches.
VanNess wrote Natteal a citation for harvesting an undersized red drum, which is a second-degree misdemeanor. Natteal must either pay a $318 fine or appear in court on Aug. 15.