Local News

Jacksonville police kill gator after it ate dog

Posted July 24, 2013
Updated July 25, 2013

— A Jacksonville public safety officer shot and killed a 500-pound alligator after it ate an 80-pound Husky that was walking with its owner.

Amy Matz was walking 9-month-old Simba at dusk Tuesday when he ran to the edge of the water near a local shopping center to take a drink and was grabbed by the 12-foot reptile.

Public safety and North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission officials searched for the alligator Wednesday morning in Mill Creek, which comes of out of the New River.

Authorities discussed relocating the animal, but wildlife biologist Robbie Norville said that it was too big to be moved. In the interest of public safety, they decided it had to be killed.

A public safety officer shot the alligator, which disappeared below the surface of the water. Its body was recovered later in the afternoon.

92 Comments

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  • paradiselost Jul 30, 5:19 p.m.

    Magnificent wild animal put down because of stupid human behavior. Wish it had eaten the dogs owner instead.

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Jul 26, 5:20 p.m.

    rherring23 -

    Had the dog been on a leash, perhaps it wouldn't have neared the water at all, to endanger itself or its lame owner. Had it been on a leash, perhaps it would still be alive, and the gator too.

    That's the most likely scenario.

    That dog suffered horribly being eaten like that. The owner should have to answer for that suffering caused by their own negligence.

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Jul 26, 5:18 p.m.

    The gator was only doing what its Creator designed it to do.

    This is NC. There is a leash law here. The dog should have been on a leash.

    Charge the dog owner for negligence and endangerment, and leave the gator alive, moved to new territory down in the Everglades.

  • njoy1962 Jul 26, 1:38 p.m.

    OMG That's a big gator

  • Skywatch_NC Jul 26, 11:00 a.m.

    but when watching the video I noticed there existed signs warning people there are gators in the area.

    Yep, signs are there for a purpose ...unfortunately some people have to learn the hard way.

  • bobbyem Jul 26, 10:17 a.m.

    I hate they killed the gator for doing his daily routine,

  • Not_Time_Yet Jul 25, 7:11 p.m.

    Too bad the people lost their dog, but when watching the video I noticed there existed signs warning people there are gators in the area.

  • rherring23 Jul 25, 7:11 p.m.

    here are some real idjuts in this world and some of these statements prove it. Should have been on a leash, I'm sure that would have stopped the gator and would have possibility put the owner within the gator's range. Owner should have been charged with animal endangerment, yes sir, I'm sure the owner thought let me go down to the water, I'm sure there is a 12 foot gator my dog can play with. So if you are walking with you kid and an animal comes out of the woods or water, or somebody's dog gets loose and attacks your child, you should be charged with voluntary manslaughter. Should have relocated the gator, that would have been easy, you people watch too many reality shows, and btw, you do know that most of them are staged. And some of the most experienced gator handlers have lost limbs or life. Also, once a gator tastes an animal like that it will search for more. There is nowhere you can relocate it that within a day or two it can not be in an area with animals and people.

  • Tide4ever Jul 25, 7:09 p.m.

    I have seen thousands down there in the everglades. I don't think one less is going to make a lot of difference in the grand scheme of things.

  • Strawberry Letter 23 Beth Wilson Jul 25, 7:01 p.m.

    That is just horrible. I feel sorry for all involved! The alligator. They DO need to eat too! They aren't picky. The family and of course, the dog!

    Usually, I'd hate to see the alligator killed, but in this case, I'd hate to see it LIVE. I'd want it dead! Stone cold dead!

    I can't imagine what this family went through, seeing their family member killed, basically before their eyes. Poor, poor dog!

    I'm glad they killed the alligator though. At least that is one that won't be going on the hunt again.

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