PLANTATION KEY, February 13, 2020 – A Hialeah man caught with undersized fish off the Upper Keys late last year has been sentenced to six days in the Monroe County Detention Center.
Jose Gonzalez, 53, was sentenced February 12 by Monroe County Judge Sharon Hamilton after he pleaded, in an agreed-upon plea with the state, no contest to possessing undersized mutton snapper. She also placed him on probation for six months, during which he cannot be on or in Monroe County waters. He must pay $508 in court, investigative and prosecution costs and take a state-approved marine-resources education course. Assistant State Attorney Paul Vargo represented the state.
Officer Garrett Jacobs and Lt. Liz Lyne with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission were in their patrol truck at the Channel Five Bridge at mile marker 71 of U.S. 1 on November 5 when they saw Gonzalez and a woman near a pickup truck. Jacobs asked Gonzalez if he had any coolers and he opened one in the pickup’s bed. In it were four fish, including a mutton snapper. Jacobs’ measurement of it was 16 inches, two inches below the legal limit.
Jacobs cited Gonzalez for the undersized mutton snapper and also issued three warnings for other violations for the other fish.