A Florida man has been sentenced to 10 days in jail for the 2017 death of a shark that was caught on video.

The original incident occurred in June of 2017 when Robert Benac III, 30, Michael Wenzel, 23, and Spencer Heintz, 35, were out fishing off the coast of Egmont Key, Florida. The trio managed to catch a shark on their line and, instead of reeling it in or releasing it, tied it to the back of their speedboat to drag and kill it.

A disturbing video of the act went viral shortly after, prompting immediate outrage. Soon after, the Bradenton Herald found videos of the men shooting other sharks with a revolver and pouring alcohol into the mouths of still-living fish.

Benac was originally arrested on federal charges of aggravated animal cruelty by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, with the possibility of prison time if found guilty. However, Benac ultimately agreed to a last-second plea deal on Saturday.

Benac will have to serve 10 days in Hillsborough County jail, all of which can be served on weekends. He will also serve 11 months of probation, perform 250 hours of community service, and pay a $2,500 fine.

“We were confident in what we could do and what we could show, but at the end of the day you can never be 100 percent confident in the jury system,” Benac’s attorney, Justin Petredis, told the Tampa Bay Times. “That was a worry, that the anger and emotions of the jury would outweigh where we were hoping common sense would take over.”

Heintz had all charges against him dropped in May 2018, while Wenzel pled guilty to a similar deal as Benac in February 2019.

shark-3197585_640 shark Photo: pixabay