Two Alligator Attacks Reported in Same Southwest Florida River in Less Than 10 Days

For the second time in less than 10 days, an alligator has bitten someone swimming in a Southwest Florida river.

Officials say Russell Mendelson was bitten on his left foot while in the Peace River at a park near Arcadia, located east of Sarasota. Witnesses told NBC affiliate WBBH-TV the 34 year old was playing with his daughters Sunday when he was bit.

“He threw his little girl out of the water and got everybody out of the water and then he comes walking up and the bottom of his foot is just dangling," Justin Cassell told the station.

Mendelson was taken to an area hospital, where his condition is unknown. The attack was the second one in the area after a 10-year-old boy visiting from near Atlanta was bitten on July 7th. The child was treated and released.

A trapper was called by Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission officials to remove a nearly seven foot gator from the water the believe was responsible for the latest attack, though officials have not said if it was the same one from the first attack.

Contact Us