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UPDATE: Remains of woman found after alligator attacked and dragged her into water

Updated: 4:45 p.m. June 9, 2018

(CNN) -- Authorities confirmed Saturday morning that they had found the remains of a woman killed by an alligator in Davie, Florida.

Search teams discovered the body of Shizuka Matsuki about 10 p.m. Friday in a lake at the Silver Lakes Rotary Nature Park, said Rob Klepper, spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Matsuki, 47, of Plantation, Florida, disappeared Friday morning while walking beside the lake. A necropsy performed on a 12-foot, 6-inch alligator captured in the lake in Davie indicated the woman was bitten by the animal, Klepper said.

CNN affiliate WSVN reported that police said a witness saw the woman walking her dogs near SW 52nd Avenue in the nature park. The witness told police the woman was gone the next time she looked, but the dogs were still there, the TV station said.

One of the animals had a fresh wound, WSVN said. The dogs didn't want to leave the lake and were being cared for by Broward County Animal Care and Adoption, WSVN said.

Aerial photos from the TV station showed a large alligator swimming in the water.

"We would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Shizuka Matsuki," Klepper said Saturday. "We will be conducting a thorough investigation into this incident."

According to Florida Fish and Wildlife, the state has averaged five unprovoked alligator bites yearly since 1948. Twenty-two bites have resulted in death, the agency said. Alligators can be found in all 67 counties.

In a well-publicized attack in June 2016, a 2-year-old boy died after an alligator pulled him into a lagoon near a Walt Disney World hotel.

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Posted: 2:27 p.m. June 8, 2018

DAVIE, Fla. (CBS News) -- Authorities searched a Florida pond Friday after a witness told police an alligator attacked a woman walking her dogs and dragged her into the water. The caller reported seeing the alligator drag her into the pond in Silver Lakes Rotary Nature Park at about 9:45 a.m. Friday.

In a Sun Sentinel report , Davie Police Maj. Dale Engle said divers were searching the water.

"Her dogs won't leave the pond," Engle said. "One of her dogs got bit by the gator."

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokesman Rob Klepper said the report of the attack was still unconfirmed, but law enforcement officers with the agency were heading to the scene.

The pond is in a park near the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, a major Miami-area tourist and entertainment attraction.

Authorities closed the park Friday. CBS Miami reports the park is very popular. People go there to walk, walk their dogs and picnic. There are two lakes at the park and the reported attack happened in what is referred to as the North Lake.

Edwin Gomez is at the park nearly every day.

"I saw the gator yesterday, it responds in a natural way. It's sad to hear someone got hit by the gator," he said.

The park is surrounded by homes. Neighbors say they often see people walking their dogs around the lakes and have even seen kids go swimming in them.


Alligators and humans have crossed paths more and more in Florida, as people increasingly seek waterfront homes and recreation - but fatal attacks remain rare.

According to the wildlife commission, the likelihood of a Florida resident being seriously injured during an unprovoked alligator incident in Florida is roughly only one in 3.2 million.

From 1948 to 2017, the commission has documented 401 people bitten by alligators, including 24 fatalities. The most recent death occurred in 2016, when a 2-year-old boy playing near the water's edge at a Walt Disney World resort was killed.

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