Authorities say a 12-foot, 6-inch alligator attacked and killed a woman who was walking her dogs in Davie, Florida, on Friday.
Search teams found the body of the victim just before 10 p.m. on Friday, according to a Saturday release from Florida’s Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission. The incident occurred at the Silver Lakes Rotary Nature Park lake in Davie.
A FWC statement identified the woman as Shizuka Matsuki, 47, of Plantation, Fla.
On Friday, a witness told authorities he saw the woman walking two dogs and then noticed the dogs barking near the water, but he did not see the woman again, said Davie Police Detective Viviana Gallinal.
Rob Klepper, FWC public information coordinator, confirmed to USA TODAY that the dogs remained near the scene as the search began and that one was injured.
The park is near the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, a major Miami-area tourist and entertainment attraction.
Authorities closed the park Friday, but passers-by said they were not surprised to hear about an alligator lurking in the water.
“Any body of water in Florida, you’ve got to know at some point or another there’s an alligator,” said Heather Porrata, who lives nearby.
Fatal attacks on humans remain rare, however. According to the wildlife commission, the likelihood of a Florida resident being seriously injured during an unprovoked alligator incident in Florida is roughly only one in 3.2 million.
From 1948 to 2017, the commission has documented 401 people bitten by alligators, including 24 fatalities. The most recent death occurred in 2016, when a 2-year-old boy playing near the water’s edge at a Walt Disney World resort was killed.
Contributing: The Associated Press
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