Authorities in California are seeking a man who posed with a great white shark. (updated at end of article)
Recently released photos of the unidentified fisherman posing with a great white shark are believed to have been taken on June 22 around 6 p.m. at Pismo Pier.
Great white sharks are a protected species and can only be captured for research purposes. Any angler who hooks a great white is supposed to immediately release the shark unharmed. Fishermen who fail to do so can face a misdemeanor charge that carries a sentence of up to six months in jail or a $1,000 fine.
Authorities believe the man who caught the shark may have done so illegally, because the shark was landed and had been posed for photos.
“It appears, according to preliminary information, the animal was not immediately released. You are not supposed to pose with the animals,” according to California Fish and Wildlife spokesman Todd Tognazzini.
Authorities believe the man who caught the shark is a local citizen, and hope one of the many witness to the event may come forward with information.
Anyone who can identify the man or has information may be entitled to a reward and is asked to call the Fish and Wildlife tip line at (888)334-2258.
“We are just trying to further our investigation and find out if the preliminary information is true,” Tognazzini added.
A second shark was caught at the pier on Saturday, July 9 around midday. The 4 1/2-foot shark was released before Fish and Wildlife arrived, but they were able to review video evidence that showed the shark was released without harm.
You can support the California Department of Fish and Wildlife buy purchasing a Warden Stamp. The 2016 stamp is available for $5 online at https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Warden-Stamp According to their website; all funds from stamp sells will be used to purchase new communications and surveillance devices, Protective equipment training in specialized areas and new law enforcement programs, such as the CDFW’s K-9 Program
Updated July 13, 2016: Tips have led to the identification of the angler, Joshua Ramsey Carr 25, of Oceano California.
Fish and Wildlife is now trying to determine how long the shark was out of the water and are asking for anyone who witnessed the event to call 888-334-2258. They are looking for any video or photographic evidence which could help in determining how long the shark was out of the water.