Punta Gorda man charged with felony littering
PUNTA GORDA, Fla. (WWSB) - A Punta Gorda man faces felony charges after deputies say he dumped a makeshift goat pen in a vacant lot near his home, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office said.
It’s at least the sixth illegal dumping arrest on the Suncoast since February, the third in Charlotte County.
According to an arrest warrant, deputies responding to an anonymous complaint on Bermont Road found a fiberglass enclosure 8 feet long, 5 feet wide and 6 feet high, sitting abut 20 feet from the roadway. A large pile of animal droppings suggested it was used as animal shelter.
Deputies also saw marks on the ground suggesting the enclosure was dragged from a residence about 25 yards east of where it was found.
Deputies looked up the area on the Google Earth website to find an aerial image taken Jan. 6 of the same object sitting in the front pasture of a property on Bermont Road belonging to Mark A. Erickson, 57.
According to the warrant, when contacted, Erickson admitted to owning the enclosure and had used it as a goat pen, but said he had sold it for $200, with the buyer hauling it away on a flatbed trailer. Erickson said the goat pen fell off the truck.
Deputies noted the pen was upright, 20 feet from the roadway with no apparent damage.
Based on evidence, Erickson was arrested and booked into the Charlotte County Jail. Because of the size of the pen, he was charged with felony littering.
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