July 12th, 2011
10:48 AM ET

Gator bites boy at park after man lets reptile out

A man at an Indiana amusement park pulled a small alligator out of its enclosure, offered some children the chance to pet it and then fled when the gator bit an 11-year-old boy, police said.

"Someone we're still trying to identify was able to get one of the alligators out," said Sgt. Michael Grennes of the Valparaiso Police Department.

Grennes said the police are investigating Monday's incident and it's unclear what charges, if any, the man may face.

A Valparaiso police incident report said the man took a pole with string attached, which patrons may use to feed gators from a distance, to create a noose and pull out an alligator. After fishing the reptile out of its enclosure, the man told some children they could pet the alligator, the report said.

"The alligator snipped at one of the fingers of one of the kids that was there," Grennes said.

According to the police report, the boy was injured on his right index finger. Grennes said the injury was not serious.

Grennes said a woman believed to have been with the man at the time has since said she cannot identify him.

"She continues to tell us she doesn't know who he is," Grennes said.

The Valparaiso park, called Zao Island, is a small family entertainment center that includes go-karts and mini golf  as well as the live alligators.

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Filed under: Alligators • Indiana
soundoff (57 Responses)
  1. Philip

    It kind of grossed me out when I found out that a Catholic priest 'blessed-holy watered' the bombs bound for Hiroshima and Nagasaki. How many Catholics did those God-Blessed bombs murder? (murder: the taking of human life with malice aforethought) It's disgusting to see members of the same religion murdering each other on the battlefield with both sides being egged-on by a Catholic priest. On BOTH sides young Catholic men believe that if they die in war, they died for God and country, because that's what the priest told them. This hypocricy will end. The Church will fall. And Uncle Sam will see to it. hide and watch

    July 13, 2011 at 8:15 am | Report abuse |
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