BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. - Boynton Beach police say a Lake Worth man killed between $20,000 and $30,000 worth of bait fish that belonged to a competitor.
Officers said that Alexander Ramer, 25, used liquid bleach to kill the fish owned by Dynamite Live Bait.
The business is owned by a father and son, Gary Case, Senior and Gary Case, Junior.
Catching and selling bait fish is how they support their families.
Police said the victims told officers that on May 31 surveillance cameras showed someone on a 33-foot center console boat pull up to their bait pens and pour two large buckets of a liquid into them.
Investigators said that 170 dozen Goggle Eye bait fish and 25 dozen Speedos were killed.
The Cases say they considered the suspect a friend.
"Makes me feel terrible. Knowing someone as a friend would come do something like that competition or not, would do something like that to me,” said Gary Case, Jr.
"We're in trouble because I had a 250 boat tournament that morning and the bait got killed at 2 a-m that morning,” said Gary Case, Sr.
Boynton Beach police say that Ramer is charged felony criminal mischief.
The Cases say they now guard their bait before tournaments by sleeping on the dock with guns.