July 8, 2009

Police find wayward gator tied to tree

Police responding to a report of an alligator at a South Florida apartment complex found the 8-foot gator tied to a tree with an extension cord.

The alligator was struggling, trying to escape, while an audience of about 30 people had gathered outside the River Oaks Apartments in Oakland Park to watch its thrashing, Mike Jachles, a spokesman for the Broward Sheriff's Office, told The Miami Herald. The alligator is believed to have crawled from a canal into the complex swimming pool.

A trapper called to capture the alligator and get it off the premises said someone appeared to have fed it.

It thought it was home, Jachles said. This just shows that wild animals are dangerous. Don't feed them.

No one stepped up and admitted tying the alligator to the tree. Jachles said some children had also tossed stones at the alligator.

Jachles said alligators are a fact of life in Florida.

We live in the Everglades, he said. The alligators were here long before us.