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Firefighter Encounters 3-Foot Gator on Way to Work

Firefighter Encounters 3-Foot Gator on Way to Work

The Boston Herald via YellowBrix

August 24, 2010

BROCKTON, MA – A Brockton firefighter had a wild wake-up call on his way to work Sunday after discovering a 3-foot alligator crossing the road near his car.

“One car swerved into my lane and it forced me to stop, and then after it passed me, I noticed it was scurrying across the street,” said Scott Hurst, 47, who noticed the collared gator around 7 a.m. on Clifton Avenue near Copeland Street.

“Originally I thought it was a lizard, like an iguana, but when I got closer I realized it wasn’t that,” he added.

Hurst grabbed the reptile by its collar and tail, and used a bungee cord to tie it to a hook in his pick-up truck bed before calling police. Officers then contacted Brockton animal control who picked up the gator once Hurst reached the Station 7 parking lot.

“It didn’t look hostile,” Hurst said. “I just made sure I didn’t get too close to it.”

The gator was sporting a dark brown collar, covered with small spikes, Hurst said.

“It looked like it might have been a pet that escaped but I’m not sure,” Hurst said.

Brockton animal control supervisor Tom DeChellis said the alligator is expected to be picked up by an environmental police officer later today.

While at least two gators were found “dumped” in a pond at D.W. Fields Park several years back, and “occasionally” an owner will leave an alligator behind if they move out of an apartment, DeChellis said this gator was a rare find.

“It’s very uncommon,” DeChellis said. “In the 15 years that I’ve been here we haven’t had any alligators down in that area of the city.”

Authorities are searching for the owner, yet “don’t have any leads,” DeChellis said. Anyone with information on who might own the gator is asked to call either Brockton Police, the environmental police, or Brockton animal control at 508-580-7835.


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