Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Woman, 20, faces up to five years in jail after being Phototographed riding a sea turtle on Florida beach - via Herp Digest

  • Stephanie Moore, 20, was one of two women seen riding a turtle in July
  • Pictures of them were widely circulated, prompting criminal probe
  • On Saturday, police recognized Moore from the photo during a house stop
  • She was detained on felony animal cruelty warrant, held on $2,000 bond
  • If found guilty she faces up to five years in jail and up to $10,000 in fines 
A woman has been arrested for riding a sea turtle in Florida.
Stephanie Marie Moore, 20, was one of two women pictured astride the creature during a debauched night on the beach in July.
The Snapchat image, which was circulated on Facebook and Twitter, prompting a criminal investigation by police and animal protection groups in Melbourne, Florida.
On Saturday, officers responding to a disturbance at a home recognized Moore from the photograph and detained her on suspicion of molesting a marine turtle.
She is being held on a $2,000 bond.
Animal cruelty is met with heavy penalties in Florida.
In most cases, including this one, where the animal is thought to have suffered unnecessary pain or suffered it is treated as a felony.
If guilty, Moore faces up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
Sea turtles are endangered in Florida as illegal harvesting and pollution have left numbers dwindling.
They are protected under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973 and Florida's Marine Turtle Protection Act. 

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