PRESCOTT, Wis. (WCCO) — When you go camping, you expect to see wildlife. But how about a three to four foot alligator?
Cheryl McKenna and her fiancé, Derrick Radke, thought the banks of the Mississippi near Prescott, Wis., would perfect for camping. In fact, it was Cheryl’s first time.
“It was my first trip to the river and my last trip to the river,” said McKenna. “Just as we got to shore, I saw something swimming.”
“It looked like a muskrat swimming towards me,” said Radke. “She thought it looked like a lizard.”
Instead it was an alligator. The animal climbed up on a tree stump lodged in the river to sun itself.
“There were a couple of turtles there the turtles jumped off when I pulled up the alligator just sat there and stared at me,” said Radke. “I did get a picture on my phone. I didn’t think anyone would believe me!”
The couple flagged down the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office.
“It wasn’t that big, but with little kids or animals of any kind it would have taken a bite out of them,” said Sheriff Nancy Hove. “That’s when my deputies decided to take action. We ended up shooting it before it hurt anybody. It would have probably died come winter time anyways, it can’t make it through the cold.”
The Wisconsin DNR is investigating. Investigators believe someone released their pet into the river. If they find the person, officers tell WCCO-TV they will pursue charges.