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Body of boy killed by alligator found

June 16, 2016

A dive team has found the body of a two-year-old boy who was attacked by an alligator in Florida. The attack happened while the boy was with his father at Disney World.

Lake where Alligator killed boy
Image: Reuters/A. Latif

The boy's body was uncovered on Wednesday from the manmade lagoon at Florida's Disney World, where the alligator had attacked him a day earlier.

The 2-year-old boy was standing on the beach with his father when the alligator struck, dragging the boy into the water. His father, Matt Graves of Elkhorn, Nebraska, attempted to rescue his son but was unable to get him back.

"Of course the family was distraught, but also I believe somewhat relieved that his body was found intact," Sheriff Jerry Demings told reporters.

In a statement from Disney World Resort President George A. Kalogridis, the company said it was "doing what we can" to help the family.

"There are no words to convey the profound sorrow we feel for the family and their unimaginable loss," the statement said. "We are devastated and heartbroken by this tragic accident and are doing what we can to help the family during this difficult time."

A rare - but terrifying - incident

The beach where the attack happened was closed as dive teams were sent out to find the missing boy, and they remained closed during Demings' press conference.

The sheriff said five aligators were captured and killed during the search, and there's a good chance that one of them is the killer, but a forensic investigation will continue to make sure.

Though the beach had a sign that said "No Swimming," there were no warnings of alligators in the area.

There are an estimated one million gators in the state, but attacks on humans are rare. In all, 23 people in Florida have died from unprovoked alligator attacks since 1948, as of April data from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. There have been 383 non-fatal bites reported in that time.

blc/sms (AP, dpa, Reuters)