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Woman caught illegally dumping asphalt after months-long investigation in Hillsborough County

Posted at 4:29 PM, Sep 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-09 22:53:01-04

A local woman is facing felony charges for illegally dumping asphalt along a popular stretch of road in Hillsborough County.

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office arrested Mariela Almanza, 22, over the weekend for felony littering and trespassing on private property.

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A spokesperson for the sheriff’s office said some good police work helped catch Almanza in the act.

The sheriff’s office has known about the illegal activity off North 56th Street and Powhatan Avenue since the spring.

In April, the environmental enforcement unit with the sheriff’s office began investigating the illegal dumping, but could not catch drivers in the act.

On Sunday, Deputy Thornsberry spotted a red dump truck entering the CSX property and illegally dumping a load of crushed asphalt.

“We investigated this for hours and weren’t able to catch someone,” said Granit. “Just a little bit of luck and a lot of talent that our deputies bring to the table with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.”

The sheriff’s office said the owner of the company is not facing any charges because he said he did not tell Almanza to dump the material.

Investigators with the environmental enforcement unit believe there are more companies doing this.

CSX has signs posted that they are recording, and that dumping is illegal.