Sheriff’s Office Director of Aviation Joao Freire and Lt. Charlene Sprinkle who took to the air in the Sheriff’s Office OH-58 helicopter during 2020 lobster mini season.

Sheriff’s Office 2020 Lobster Mini Season date for Thursday and total two-day figures

Deputies reported few issues on the water over the course of the 2020 lobster mini season. There were no serious injuries or incidents reported.

Most people were in compliance and there were no reports of large resource violations or safety-related incidents. What follows is the Sheriff’s Office data from Thursday as well as the totals for both days. It does not include figures from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Key West Police Department, Key Colony Beach Police, Florida Highway Patrol, the U.S. Coast Guard or our other partners. There may be a few Sheriff’s Office reports still to be written. In other words, this information may be slightly incomplete. Also note Vessel Stops & Resource Checks includes all lobster checks on water and land.

All eight Sheriff’s Office boats, including one unmarked vessel, four Yamaha WaveRunners, which are donate every year to the Sheriff’s Office by Riva Motorsports & Marine of the Keys in Key Largo, the OH-58 helicopter and a slew of special land-based details of Deputies to check bridges, canals and right-of-ways, were all deployed by Sheriff Rick Ramsay for the 2020 mini season.

“I wanted a strong presence out there this year on air, land and water,” said Sheriff Rick Ramsay. “The helicopter is a great tool as it provides an effective deterrence to law breakers as well as being at the ready for search and rescue missions. We employed a very large, multi-pronged approach and the figures reflect that. Let’s hope that the regular season goes as safely and smoothly as mini season.”

Key Largo

  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 40
  • Arrests: 0
  • Citations: 12
  • Warnings: 21


  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 99
  • Arrests: 0
  • Citations: 9
  • Warnings: 22

Middle Keys

  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 172
  • Arrests: 2
  • Citations: 1
  • Warnings: 18

Lower Keys

  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 140
  • Arrests: 0
  • Citations: 0
  • Warnings: 5

Thursday Total Countywide

  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 451
  • Arrests: 2
  • Citations: 22
  • Warnings: 66

Two-day Total Countywide

  • Vessel stops & Resource checks: 787
  • Arrests: 5
  • Citations: 49
  • Warnings: 166