Artifact Hunt On Swiftmud Land Yields Arrest, State Says
A Tampa man's archaeological expedition led to his arrest Wednesday, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. A commission officer arrested William Joseph Bryant, 24, in Hillsborough County on property owned by the Southwest Florida Water Management District. According to an arrest affidavit, the officer found Bryant searching for artifacts, using a shovel and sifting screen. Bryant had made his way past fences and warning signs to reach the area, according to the affidavit. Bryant is charged with artifact excavation on state lands, a felony. He also is charged with damaging state property and illegally entering district lands, both misdemeanors.