Police: Man dies after shark attack off Cape Cod

WELLFLEET, Mass. (AP) — A man boogie boarding off a Cape Cod beach was attacked by a shark on Saturday and died later at a hospital, becoming the state's first shark attack fatality in more than 80 years.

Wellfleet Police Lt. Michael Hurley said the man, who was in his mid-20s, succumbed to his injuries following the attack in the waters off Newcomb Hollow Beach in Wellfleet at around noon.

The man was pronounced dead at Cape Cod Hospital in Hyannis. The beach has been closed to swimming.

The attack is the first fatal shark attack in Massachusetts since 1936, and the second shark attack this season.

A 61-year-old New York man was severely injured Aug. 15 after fighting off a shark off Truro, about 4 miles north of Saturday's attack. He's recovering in a Boston hospital.

"Today is just keeping everyone out of water," Hurley said. "There'll be a determination later about what the town wants to do with the beaches going forward."

Beachgoers said the Wellfleet beach is popular with surfers, and with sunny skies and warm temperatures Saturday it was busy, even though the summer season was over and lifeguards were no longer on watch.

Joe Booth, a local fisherman and surfer, said he was on shore when he saw the man and his friend boogie boarding when the attack happened.

He said he saw the man kick aggressively kick something behind him and a flicker of a tail from the water. He realized what was happening when the friend came ashore dragging his injured friend.

"I was that guy on the beach screaming, 'Shark, shark!" Booth said. "It was like right out of that movie 'Jaws.' This has turned into Amity Island real quick out here."

Booth said others on the beach attempted to make a tourniquet while others frantically called 911.

Hayley Williamson, a Cape Cod resident and former lifeguard who was on the beach at the time, was in disbelief after the man, who police have not yet identified was rushed in an ambulance.

"We've been surfing all morning right here and they were just further down," she said of the two boogie boarders. "Right spot, wrong time, I guess."

The state's last shark attack fatality was on July 25, 1936, when 16-year-old Joseph Troy Jr. was bitten in waters off Mattapoisett.

Troy, of Boston's Dorchester neighborhood, was visiting an uncle and was swimming about 50 feet offshore when the shark attacked.

----

Associated Press reporter Philip Marcelo contributed from Boston.

 

READER COMMENTS

Loading comments...
Hide Comments

Stories that may interest you

Debate not over on sharing teacher pension costs with towns

Cities and towns have been on the defensive for the past three years, trying to avoid getting billed for a portion of the scariest expense in the state budget — the annual contribution to the teachers’ pension fund.


Forensic scientist Henry Lee defends record in wake of court decision throwing out 2 murder convictions

Forensic scientist Henry Lee, renowned for decades as one of the nation’s top criminologists, angrily denied Monday that he did anything wrong in the case of two men whose 1989 murder convictions have been thrown out by the state Supreme Court.


Ex-school employee charged with supplying pot to students

Police say a former employee of a Connecticut high school has been charged providing marijuana to students who attended the school


Couple seeks to stop release of more vaccine data

A Connecticut couple wants to stop the Department of Public Health from releasing additional immunization data

TRENDING

PODCASTS