updated 6/9/2009 5:49:42 PM ET 2009-06-09T21:49:42

A commercial fisherman reeled in a missile in the Gulf of Mexico and kept it on his boat for 10 days, authorities in Florida said. But an Air Force spokesman said the missile wasn't live and posed no danger.

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Police said the boat's captain, Rodney Soloman, hooked the air-to-air guided missile 50 miles off the coast of Panama City. The Air Force and Navy use the area for weapons training.

Soloman had the missile aboard his boat for 10 days before returning Monday to port in Madeira Beach, near St. Petersburg.

A bomb squad was called in from MacDill Air Force Base and dismantled the missile in an empty parking lot.

Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis said in a statement that contrary to initial media reports, the missile "had an inert, nonexplosive telemetry warhead that was never in danger of exploding."

The bomb squad said the missile was very corroded from floating in saltwater for a long time.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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