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An in-depth look at the Lee County Marine Unit

Posted at 7:14 AM, May 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-24 13:58:24-04

Fox 4 is giving you a behind the scenes look at a section of the Lee County Sheriff's department that isn't typically talked about-- the LSCO Marine Unit. While we know that LCSO does work with plenty of criminal investigation on land, it makes sense that in Southwest Florida-- a big a part of their work actually happens on water. 

When it comes to investigating crimes in Southwest Florida, there's something that Lieutenant Chris Nyce has to work with that other Law Enforcement Officers don't, lots of water.

"We have almost 600 miles of shoreline that we're responsible for keeping an eye on," says Lt. Nyce.

For Nyce that means coordinating investigations, rescues and patrols. And instead of a patrol car, the deputies he oversees in the marine unit might use a patrol boat. Which comes in handy considering not everyone he helps has two legs

He says the unit often has to "respond to manatees that are in trouble, turtles that are on trouble, and people that in trouble. It happens."

And since anything can happen out on the water, he and deputies like Sergeant Tim Galloway sometimes have to call in a few reinforcements from near and far.

Sgt. Galloway says they have "reached out to United States Coast Guard, we've reached to agencies as far north as Gainesville all the way south to Key West "

Sgt. Galloway says so much water makes Southwest Florida a target for these kind of crimes. There's so many boats and just as many opportunities for criminals

"When you have that much property and that many registered boats, those crimes are going to increase because its a crime of opportunity"

But he says what helps make his job easier is when when the public steps up and steps in to help. Sgt. Galloway says that when he's out in the community he's happy to hear from people all over Lee County how much they appreciate the work he's doing and that's what makes him enjoy his job so much.