DESTIN — A 69-year-old man was arrested for boating under the influence after officers searched his boat for illegal fish.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conversation Commission officers were patrolling the Destin East Pass when they saw a boat returning from the Gulf of Mexico with three men on board and fishing rods in plain view.
The officers stopped the boat and asked the men if they had caught anything. They said they caught triggerfish. The officers asked the men if they could search the boat, and they allowed them to.
Inside a fish box on board, officers found five gray triggerfish. The officers told the men that the season for triggerfish had closed and wouldn’t reopen until August.
One man showed the officers a fishing magazine he said they used to determine if they could keep the fish. The officers pointed out where the magazine said to check the FWC website for the triggerfish season.
When the officers searched other compartments for more fish, they found several empty beer cans. The captain’s eyes were glassy and bloodshot, the arrest report said, so the officers asked if he had been drinking.
The man said he had three to four beers. The officers conducted a series of field sobriety tests on the man, all of which he failed. The man was arrested for boating under the influence.
The officers towed the boat to the Destin Coast Guard station, and one of the other men was able to take the boat after giving a breath sample.