Florida man catches 1,000-pound gator after it ‘stalked’ him for years

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There was something in the water between them.

It took him years, but a Florida man has finally caught and killed an alligator he swears had been tormenting him.

“Three different times in the last two months I’ve been back there fishing and he’s stalked me,” fisherman Corey Capps told CNN of his alligator nemesis. “So me and him, something was going to give between the two of us.”

Capps had been dreaming of catching the gator, which lived in a river in his hometown of Blountstown, Florida, for three years. Then, this month, he was taking a boat ride on the Apalachicola River with his wife when he spotted it lying on a bank, reported CNN. Quickly, he rang his friend Rodney Smith, who can legally hunt alligators thanks to state-issued gator tags.

The pair took a 12-foot jon boat out on the river the next day, Oct. 13, and once again spotted the gator lounging in the same spot on the bank.

While Capps and Smith recognized that their prey was large, they didn’t realize just how big the reptile was until they’d successfully speared it.

“We went out and harpooned him . . . and we didn’t realize — we knew he was big, but not as big as when we pulled him up that bank,” said Capps.

Across the top of his head, the gator measured 16 inches wide. He weighed in at 1,008 pounds and measured over 13 feet long.

“He’s the biggest one I’ve ever seen,” said Capps. It took the pair some 3 ½ hours to move the animal the 100 feet to the jon boat.

While certainly much larger than the average gator, Capps’ now-defeated enemy isn’t quite record-breaking. According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the state record for length is 14 feet, 3.5 inches, weighing 1,043 pounds.

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