Thursday, 29 November 2012

Woman arrested after 'joyriding manatee in Florida'

Ana Gloria Garcia Gutierrez was detained last Sunday at her workplace at Sears for contravening the Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act that states it is illegal to 'annoy, molest, harass or disturb' the endangered species.

Two-month-old pictures of her apparently straddling the animal arose via the media following reports a woman was seen riding a manatee at Fort Desoto Park on September 30.
The 53-year-old turned herself into the Pinellas County Sheriff's office a couple of days after the snaps appeared.

She confessed to the illegal ride, saying 'she is new to the area and did not realise it was against the law to touch or harass manatees,' according to the authorities.

If the 53-year-old did indeed joyride, she was lucky to not injure herself as the animals can grow to a massive 12ft (3.7m) and weigh a colossal 1,800 pounds (818 kilograms).

It is not clear what punishment she would face if convicted.

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