A Florida man fishing golf balls out of a lake around the Bonaventure Country Club in Weston encountered an especially difficult water hazard when an alligator bit him.
The victim, 51-year-old Stephen Martinez, of Pompano Beach, said the gator bit his hand and then kept trying to attack him. Martinez then got in a golf cart and drove to the golf course and told two employees of the course. It was the second time in five years that Martinez, an independent contractor who sells balls back to golf clubs, has been attacked on the job.
“I knew exactly what it was because a turtle can only bite so hard and when it snapped, it’s 2,000 pounds per square inch and I felt like I lost my hand,” Martinez said.
Martinez drove to the clubhouse to get help for his injury. The wounds were said to be superficial and Martinez said his wetsuit helped to stop the biting of the skin.
Martinez said was also attacked at a different course about five years ago, when an eight-foot aligator "locked on to me," leading to 12 puncture wounds.
The initial call about the latest incident came into the Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program, SNAP. The center handles all of the call for alligator-related issues. A trapper came to the scene and was able to capture the 8-to-10-foot alligator.
As for Martinez, even as he clinched a blood-stained cast, he is ready to return to his job.
“I’m more likely to get cut by a shell, by glass, by turtle,” Martinez said. “Thank God the alligator let loose and I’m here today."