One of the two men accused of hog-tying three endangered Key deer in Key West, Florida, pleaded not guilty in front of a U.S. District Court judge, and agreed to a $20,000 personal surety bond after entering his plea to three counts of violating the federal Endangered Species Act.
Erik Damas Acosta, 18, and Tumani Anthony Younge, 23, were arrested in July after a Monroe County Sheriff’s Office deputy pulled them over for a traffic violation. Talk about a bad time to fail to stop when you have three deer tied up in the back of your car . . .
One of the deer would have to euthanized days later due to a broken leg, which Acosta apparently “was saddened to learn.”
According to The Miami Herald, there are thought to be only 875 deer in the herd found in the Lower Keys, and they are heavily protected by the state.
Right now, Acosta and Younge are facing six third-degree felony charges each through the state: Three counts for knowingly/illegally taking the deer and three counts for aggravated animal cruelty.