ORANGE PARK – Northeast Florida authorities say they’ve arrested two teenage girls seen in videos posted online lighting a threatened gopher tortoise on fire and stomping it to death.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the teens, ages 15 and 18, were arrested today on charges of felony cruelty to animals and taking, harassing, harming or killing a gopher tortoise.
Videos posted on the Facebook page of Nevada Voters for Animals showed the Orange Park girls dousing the tortoise with a flammable fluid and one of them stomping on the animal until its shell broke.
The younger girl will be prosecuted in the juvenile system. The other faces up to five years in prison on the felony cruelty charge and up to 60 days in jail for the second charge.