A 90-year-old Florida woman has had her leg amputated below the knee after an eight-foot-long alligator bit her and tried to drag her into a canal on Wednesday.
Margaret Webb was walking in her flooded yard in Copeland, Florida when the incident occurred, Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokesperson Gabriella Ferraro told CNN.
A man named Dewain Daniels happened to be driving by, and stopped to help Webb. Ferraro said Daniels pulled Webb out of the water, but the alligator made three more attempts to leave the water before Daniels finally shot the reptile with a .22 Magnum rifle.
"We don't know if it's alive or dead or injured," Ferraro said of the alligator.
Ferraro told the Associated Press that Webb's leg was "barely attached" after the alligator attack. Webb was airlifted to a Naples hospital, and she is in critical condition.
Daniels has apparently known Webb his entire life. Area residents told the AP that Webb is "like a grandma" to people in the small community of Copeland.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reported six unprovoked alligator attacks in the state in 2010, according to CNN.
On Thursday morning, Daniels told NapleNews.com that Webb is in an induced coma, and that doctors are concerned about infections because alligators are known to have large amounts of bacteria in their mouths.
“She’s the sweetest, strong-willed Christian woman there is. She’s as nice as the day is long,” Daniels said. “Everglades is like family, and it’s nothing I did that anybody else wouldn’t have done.”
Daniels claims he killed the alligator, though officials had called off a search on Thursday afternoon.
"They’ll need to get down to that dam because he’ll be floating tomorrow," Daniels said.