A 45-year-old woman was killed Monday while trying to protect her dog from an alligator at the golf and marina community of Sea Pines Plantation on Hilton Head Island, S.C.
The Associated Press reported that Cassandra Cline of Hilton Head was walking the dog through a residential area of Sea Pines Resort around 9:30 a.m. The Island Packet reported the attack occurred at a lagoon off Wood Duck Road, which runs along golf holes on the private Sea Pines Country Club. The resort is also home to Harbour Town Golf Links, site of the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage each April.
Cline’s body was recovered from the pond. The 8-foot alligator was later found and killed, said David Lucas, a spokesman for the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
“She was walking the dog near the lagoon, and the alligator came out of the water and tried to get the dog,” Lucas told the Associated Press. “The lady tried to rescue the dog, and a maintenance worker ran over to help.”
Both were trying to save the dog, but the alligator dragged the woman into the water, he said.
The dog was unharmed.
Since 1976, there have only been about 20 attacks on people in the state, Lucas told the Associated Press. Until 2016, none of those attacks had been fatal. In 2016, a 90-year-old woman wandered away from a Charleston assisted living facility and was found dead in a pond.