ENGLEWOOD, Fla. (WFLA) — A medical examiner has confirmed that the Englewood woman who was found dead in a country club pond was killed by alligators.
Friday night, deputies said Rose Marie Wiegand, 80, was seen falling into a pond at the Boca Royale Golf & Country Club.
The person who called 911 said Wiegand fell while picking weeds from the water side of a retaining wall.
“The caller heard a scream and observed Wiegand fall into the water,” the sheriff’s office said. “The caller then entered the water and swam to her location, but was unable to locate the victim as the alligators had pulled her beneath the water.”
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said two alligators were seen near her body, but at the time, it was not yet known if the alligators they found were involved in her death.
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office told 8 On Your Side Monday that the medical examiner officially ruled the alligator attack as her cause of death.
Chief Medical Examiner Russell Vega said the woman was killed by dislocations to her spine and “blunt impacts to [the] head and neck.” The injuries were said to be caused by her fall and the alligators attacking her.
The sheriff’s office said this means the FWC would now take charge of the investigation.
Neighbors described Wiegand as a kind woman and were shocked by her death. According to them, the country club has numerous alligators in the area.
“In our community, there are a lot of alligators,” resident Kurt Kauffman told NBC affiliate WBBH. “We see them on the golfing greens. We see them in the ponds.”
According to the FWC, the two alligators they found in this case were 8 feet 10 inches and 7 feet 7 inches in length. The agency shared it doesn’t plan to remove any additional alligators from the area at this time.