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When Florida Governor Rick Scott gets involved in a fishing incident, you know it is serious. And after the governor called the video footage below “disturbing,” you know what these four Florida fishermen did was not only wrong, but immoral. Now that the footage has gone viral, thousands of people across the United States are asking police to jail the four fishermen for dragging a shark behind their motorboat while they laughed as they tortured the undersea creature. The video surfaced last week, but after Governor Scott involved himself, the four Florida men could be facing serious charges and jail time.
In the clip, the fishermen have strapped a shark to the back of their motorboat as they barrel through the water at about 45 miles per hour. The shark cannot keep up at that speed and is being dragged behind the boat and bounces off the waves.
Meanwhile, the group of fishermen turn back to the shark and laugh as they brutally torture the creature. They have no argument for ignorance because they laugh and point and one man remarks about how the shark is “already almost dead.” This makes them laugh even harder.
The public was outraged that this type of behavior is happening in the waters off the coast of Florida. One petition has begun that is asking people to sign it to help get the four men involved in this act of animal abuse arrested. They also hope to force these men to perform community service with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) so they can learn how to treat animals with respect rather than anger and violence.
More than 44,000 people have signed the petition to put these four Floridians behind bars. And more people are signing it every day.
When the video began to make the Florida fishing scene look bad, Governor Rick Scott released a comment before tourists started looking for other waters to fish in. Scott said the video was “deeply disturbing” and disrespectful to animals.
“The brutality and disrespect shown to this animal is sickening,” he wrote in a statement.
Meanwhile, Florida wildlife officials have confirmed the four men in the video. Although their names have not been made public – for fear that the public would harass them – they will face the consequences of their animal cruelty.
This is not the first time these men have been involved in acts of animal abuse. One man has a history of hurtling wildlife as a photo of him dangling a spotted eagle ray from a rope surfaced during the investigation. The man seems to get a kick out of torturing the animals of the sea.
The images of the ray were investigated back in January, but no charges were filed at the time. The spokesman for the organization, Rob Klepper, is not sure if the men have violated any laws but investigators are double checking everything.
“We’re trying to let our investigators do their work, and we don’t like to get out in front of them,” Klepper said
Mark Quartiano, celebrity shark hunter, posted the video after someone seeking his approval sent it to him.
“I don’t know what they expected me to do,” he told Miami Herald. “I’ve killed tens of thousands of sharks but not tortured them, not inhumanely and not disrespected them like that.”
Do you think police should arrest and jail these four Florida shark torturers?
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