Florida Teen Charged With Felony Cruelty To Animals Not Yet Mentally Competent To Stand Trial
April 2, 2015
Do you remember the two Florida teenaged girls who allegedly videotaped themselves last year lighting a baby gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) on fire, throwing it, and then ultimately stomping it to death?
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Well, NBC Miami reports that the older of the two girls, Jennifer Emoke Greene, 18, who pleaded not guilty to animal cruelty charges, was deemed not mentally competent to stand trial. Greene was given a conditional release to get treatment so she can be tried for felony cruelty to animals, and taking, harming, harassing or killing a gopher tortoise, which is a threatened species in Florida.
Greene is scheduled to appear in court September 8 where the state will determine if she is competent to stand trial. Greene faces up to five years in prison if she is found guilty on all charges brought against here, that is if she is found competent to stand trial in the future. The 15-year-old’s charge was not discussed as Florida’s state attorney’s office does not discuss juvenile cases.
Gopher tortoises are listed as threatened species in the state of Florida. Both the tortoise and their burrow are protected. They reach maturity at 10-15 years of age and are considered a long lived tortoise. Some reports have them living well into their 70s, with one specimen living continuously at the Museum of Natural History in Halifax, Nova Scotia aged at 71 years.
John B. Virata keeps a western hognose snake, a ball python, two corn snakes, a king snake, and two leopard geckos. His first snake, a California kingsnake, was purchased at the Pet Place in Westminster, CA for $5. His first pet reptile was a green anole that arrived in a small box via mail order. Follow him on Twitter @johnvirata