A man was sentenced to 15 months in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to more than 10 charges, including assault, driving under the influence and taking marine life from a replenishment zone.
Arick Williams, appearing in front of Acting Magistrate Angelyn Hernandez, was also sentenced to 160 hours of community service and ordered to enroll in an alcohol and drug treatment program. Williams, who has already been in custody for more than a month, will be credited for time served.
Magistrate Hernandez noted that one of Williams’s two arrests for driving under the influence came just five days after she had issued him a suspended sentence on an unrelated matter.
“How are we supposed to help you if you don’t help yourself?” she asked Williams. “You didn’t make some wise choices at all, Mr. Williams. You didn’t help yourself one bit.”
Williams was sentenced for three charges of possession of an unlicensed speargun and for four counts of marine crime. He pleaded guilty to taking specimen from a protected area, taking conch above the prescribed limit and two counts of taking marine life from a replenishment zone.
John Furniss, attorney for Williams, referred to his client’s crimes as “rape and pillage” of the environment. The magistrate told Williams that the replenishment zones are there to protect the environment “from us and for us.”
“Why do you keep doing these marine offenses? You hold a good job,” she said to Williams, who works as a mechanic. “If we don’t allow [life] to naturally replenish in a protected zone, we won’t have any.”
Williams was also sentenced for two assault charges and two charges of failing to surrender to custody. Williams will have his driver’s license disqualified for two years and was given a six-month suspended sentence that could be activated if he offends again upon being released from prison.
Magistrate Hernandez ruled that Williams will be tested for alcohol and drugs every two weeks and that he should be ordered to attend any other suitable program suggested by probation officers.
Upon his release, Williams will have a year to finish his sentence of 160 hours of community service.