Alligator kills woman, 69, in South Carolina and the beast is found guarding her mutilated body

A 10-foot alligator fatally attacked a 69-year-old woman in South Carolina – before being discovered protecting its victim’s mutilated remains.

In less than a year in the county, during the second deadly alligator assault, the unidentified woman was walking her pet dog when the creature launched an attack on Tuesday morning.

The alligator was found guarding the mutilated body of the victim near the edge of a lagoon, close to her home on Club Golf Wells Spanish in Hilton Head Island.

‘Rescue efforts were made and an alligator appeared and was guarding the woman, interrupting emergency efforts,’ the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office said.

The gator was safely removed from the area and euthanized. The woman’s body was recovered and an autopsy is planned for Wednesday.

This marked the second fatal alligator attack in the same county in less than a year, after an 88-year-old woman was killed in August 2022.

Personnel from the Spanish Wells Security Office, Beaufort County Coroner’s Office, and Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue and Police were called in around 9.30am to report a possible alligator attack near the golf course bordering the lagoon.

The crocodile resurfaced and protected the lady, impeding the emergency reaction, notwithstanding the rescue endeavors being made in an effort to salvage the lady.

The lady was discovered non-responsive and assumed deceased.

The woman is scheduled to undergo an autopsy by the Beaufort County Coroner’s Office on Wednesday. The region was securely separated from the alligator and the woman’s remains were retrieved.

Currently, it is uncertain where the lady was brought into the water. Presently, the status of the woman’s canine is also unfamiliar.

Hilton Head Island is consistently ranked as one of the best places to live in South Carolina, located in the upscale neighborhood of Beaufort County.

Alligator encounters and assaults have risen in recent years throughout the United States, particularly in Florida and South Carolina.

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In that particular year, two of which resulted in fatalities, South Carolina documented five instances of alligator assaults, after experiencing a prolonged period with minimal alligator incidents until 2022.

According to information from Fish and Wildlife, the number of alligator assaults in Florida has risen from approximately six annually between 1971 and 1986 to almost 10 per year between 1987 and 2017.

As the population and development in Florida continue to grow, scientists suggest that alligator attacks have also been on the rise.

According to the NIH, as the human population invades the natural habitat of alligators, incidents of attacks and nuisance complaints rise.

The human population of South Carolina has grown by almost 30 percent in the past twenty years.

Since 1990, the population of Beaufort County, specifically the location of Sun City Hilton Head, the residential community where a tragic incident took place, has witnessed a 24 percent increase and an 88 percent surge between 1990 and 2010.

Frank Robb, a specialist on the ancient carnivore, provided insight into the reasons behind the rise in assaults.

Robb, a well-known ‘gator trapper’ in Florida, believes that the behind reason for the increase in population and developments in Florida is the focus of his dedicated research, as he told Fox35.

FOX35 informed Robb that they are developing in numerous regions that surround marshlands and natural areas. The greater the number of individuals we continue to attract to this location, the more individuals we will have coming to Florida, resulting in the further expansion of the state.

He added, ‘People don’t want this type of interaction, and of course, the alligator doesn’t want to be doing it either. It’s not the alligator’s fault, but conflicts like this are becoming more common.’

Robb stated that the alligator should not be blamed. Similar to “avoiding walking their dog directly next to the water where an alligator might be present,” he also urges individuals to exercise more common sense and remain alert.

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Sometimes, things can go down in a place at the right time, but if my dog attacked and a gator came up, there might be nothing you can do to interact with it. That’s what Robb was told by ‘FOX35,’ if you want to play it right.

Nancy Ann Jackson Becker, aged 88, passed away in August 2022 in Sun City Hilton Head following an encounter with an alligator while she was outside her residence.

In just 76 days, a fourth fatality was recorded, as she became the fourth individual in the nation to fall victim to a crocodile assault in under 11 weeks.

The lawsuit filed in Beaufort County alleges that the woman’s family could have been avoided in the alligator assault that resulted in her death within the retirement community in South Carolina.

The 88-year-old woman’s lifeless body was discovered in the vicinity of the alligator around 11 am, as stated earlier by the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office. The alligator was allegedly protecting her remains.

In February of this year, an 85-year-old woman was tragically mauled to death by a reptile’s ten-inch alligator foot as she attempted to rescue her dog from the clutches of the creature in a pond located in Florida.

Gloria Serge, 85, was fatally injured when she attempted to save her beloved dog, Trooper, from the reptile’s grip.

The footage depicts the instance when the alligator emerges abruptly from the water and aggressively attacks the dog belonging to the woman.

The incident occurred in front of a neighbor who urgently dialed 911 while attempting to assist the woman.

Serge’s puppy survived the assault, but the alligator was later captured and put to sleep.

The dog seized itself and leapt out of the water, the 700lb alligator while in Fort Pierce, at the Spanish Lakes Fairways neighborhood, near the pond, taking her pet for a walk was the retired person.

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CBS News informed a witness that the creature assaulted her, pulling her towards the body of water when the lady attempted to remove the canine from the alligator’s mouth.

Just last week, a 13-year-old teenager survived an attack from an alligator in Florida, only to let the reptile go after it punched him in his right leg.

Gabriel Klimis was having fun with companions at Howell Creek close to Orlando.

He leaped from a bridge utilizing a cord in an effort to traverse the stream when he sensed something.

The alligator clung onto his right leg, with Klimis fully comprehending the peril he was in.

Furthermore, last week, a crocodile pounced at a fisherman close to a pond in South Carolina before he swiftly escaped to a secure spot.

The moment he fled from the creature was captured on camera.

The footage was recorded by a visitor who was exploring the Shipyard on Hilton Head Island with his family recently.

Micah Kimberlin mentioned that he was on a bicycle excursion with his spouse and three kids when he noticed the alligator.

The video surveillance shows the fisherman standing on the grassy edge of the pond, lunging towards him and a gator emerges when he has a fishing rod in hand.

The man who was being managed suffered an injury that he couldn’t escape from. In addition, a woman holding a camera was seen running away from the lake in the opposite direction as the panicked scene.

Crocodiles are more active in spring and autumn, especially at daybreak and twilight.

Although alligator assaults are increasing, they are still extremely rare occurrences.

To avoid a gator attack, it’s important to keep your distance, avoid feeding the animals, stay alert and swim in designated areas.

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