Assault By Alligator: Florida Man Chases Customers in Convenience Store With Gator

Gator beer OnlyinDuval FBNew reports in Jacksonville, Florida  show a man chasing customers in a convenience story with a live gator chased.  Strangely it is the wildlife officials who announced that they are investigating (as they should) but not the local police. Last time I check, assault was still a crime and brandishing an alligator would appear to fit the definition.

The man is laughing with his friends as he runs into the story and chases customers.  It is an incredibly obnoxious and cruel joke.



Florida defines assault as:

784.011 Assault.

(1) An “assault” is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.
(2) Whoever commits an assault shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

The media is quoting a man who The shared the video  named Robby Stratton, but it is not clear if he was one of these idiots.  He posted a statement on Facebook saying “All I have to say is it was all fun and games. Everybody in the store was friends and everyone was laughing and having a good time. No one in the situation was scared or mad.

Do you think that there should be criminal charges beyond the obvious cruelty to animals or wildlife violations?

32 thoughts on “Assault By Alligator: Florida Man Chases Customers in Convenience Store With Gator”

  1. There is an entierely different attitude towards gators in gator country than elsewhere. I recall my first fan boat tour in Louisiana, the guide hopped out of the boat and fished around in the dark water to show us a baby gator. I told him, no really, no REALLY don’t go to any trouble, praying he’d retain all of his fingers, and then he proudly showed us a cute baby gator. Kids feed ducks in CA. Kids feed gators in LA. They tie strings to chicken pieces and dangle them, or just toss them, to the gators, while the parents are standing around beaming. It’s hard to understand the level of desensitization.

    People can be fascinated with gators. Their species lived with dinosaurs and survived the mass extinction. I know a lady who is a licensed wildlife rehabilitation. She generally has a half dozen baby gators at any one time sent to her by the Department of Fish and Game, seized or turned in by people who thought they’d make great pets. They are very popular when she gives an educational tour to the public.

    I wonder why this guy had a taped gator in his vehicle. Was he relocating a nuisance gator or making a “pet” out of it? Gators are hunted, as well. While I do not agree with stressing out a wild animal, this kind of thing is not that uncommon among teenagers and young men in gator country – showing off a gator. I saw a bit of the video, and the people in the store were asking to take the animal’s photo, not running away from it. I did not get the impression that he was using the gator to rob the place or make terrorist threats. His jaws were taped shut so he was relatively helpless. He might get into trouble with Fish and Game, but young people do things like this in areas where gators are common. I love animals. I would not want a gator kept as a pet outside of a facility with a decent habitat. Most exhibition gators are kept in tiny tanks or pools that must be the most boring existence on Earth. I don’t want transported gators stressed out with fratboy pranks- just get them to where they are going if you are going to release it. But, no, I don’t want to see that boy go to jail over showing off a gator. I did not see him stabbing or hurting the gator or anyone else. Of course, I don’t know what their local wildlife laws are on gators, so maybe he broke the law.

  2. In New York, the crime would be reckless endangerment or a combination of reckless endangerment and menacing. Menacing is a class b misdemeanor, reckless endangerment in the 2d degree a class A misdemeanor.

    1. Take away the “pet” and return to whatever organization protects alligators. Put the kid in jail for 30 days and then a Judge should decide amount of fine to each person in the store. Kid and friends do not qualify.

  3. At his trial for whatever offense is charged, his defense counsel should hire a blind lawyer to second chair the case. The blind lawyer should bring his support dog into court. The support dog should be a pitt bull. The jury will get the point.

  4. Just a little red neck funnin’! You can always tell when it’s real ‘cause no self-respecting red neck brings an alligator to a gun fight. Unmanly, you know. Need better training for convenience store clerks.

  5. I don’t see any cruelty here. The alligator didn’t appear to be distressed; it wasn’t struggling to get away. It was just rednecks having a little fun. If I were his defense attorney, I would argue that the alligator is his therapy pet, and he’s entitled to take it anywhere.

  6. I think the sun got to you. It is neither an incredibly obnoxious and/nor cruel joke. Charlie Chaplin would have wet his pants over it. 🙂

  7. I don’t think you can be cruel to alligators. And if everyone was in on the fun, then there is no threat.

    1. Paul C……And even if the gator got his feelings hurt, he’s pretty thick-skinned..He’ll be fine. 😊

      1. Cindy Bragg – berry punny, berry punny. BTW, is your husband related to Braxton Braggs? I am reading a bio of Sherman and they were stationed at Fort Moultrie together, as junior officers.

        1. Paul C. Yes! Hubby is that Bragg, sort of. His mother was married to a Braxton Bragg descendant, and when he passed,she married a Mr.Taylor.That union ended after a year, but produced my husband. Later she legally changed his name to Bragg. BUT. Mr. Taylor’s father, who was hubby’s grandfather, had fought in Civil War, (He started a second family in 1900)
          Grandfather Taylor, in the 1920’s, lead tours at the famous Atlanta Cyclorama museum, showing tourists exactly where he had fought in the Battle of Atlanta! (He had also fought at Vicksburg) His second wife, hubby’s grandmother, died in the Confederate Widow’s Home in Atlanta in the 1950’s. That’s a lot of info, but thought you’d like it. The Bragg descendants had land, primarily in Savannah.

          1. Cindy Bragg – cycloramas were a big deal and very unsettling for some visitors as some newspapers report. 😉 Braxton Bragg was an excellent general and I am glad his family did not do too badly after the Late Unpleasantness.

            1. Paul C…LOL…..I have had friends with elderly family members who used that term..
              Enjoy your book!

              1. Cindy Bragg – it is a phrase that should be kept in the lexicon along with the War of Northern Aggression. It is important that these terms are not lost. They speak of the truth.

                1. I’m a fifth generation Atlantan and going to Cyclorama was a very big deal when I was a kid attending E. Rivers Elementary on Peachtree. In the 70’s a man was hired and he took it upon himself to try to paint some of the background and soldiers in the Cyclorama who had lost paint through the years. He didn’t have permission and I think was fired for altering the “scene”. I don’t even know if the Cyclorama is still in existence. I do know that the Stone Mountain Parking carving is now being targeted. The State of Georgia Legislature will make a decision about what to do about its fate someday. And we all know that it won’t be a good decision. It is my understanding that Stone Mountain is a Confederate Memorial so it may not be so easy for them to sandblast away that history. Atlanta is not a safe city to live in. I left DeKalb County after a horrendous home invasion to never return. 45 years of taxes paid to a County in a City that is now the Detroit of the South with murder, rape, child abuse and teachers who cheat resulting in the biggest cheating scandal in the history of the nation. A very dangers place to live or visit.

                  1. Elise – I know about cycloramas because of theatre history and other research I have done. Attacking Stone Mountain is like attacking Mount Rushmore. Sacrilege.

                  2. Elise…..what a great heritage you have! My husband went to West End Elementary, and rode the trolley to trombone lessons downtown to Five Points.
                    His mother was exec secretary of Fulton County Grand Jury so worked in the Fulton Co courthouse. Hubby would go there after school and wait for her to finish work.
                    So sorry about your home invasion! I do hope Texans are treating you right.

                    We can’t even think about what might happen to Stone Mountain!

                    1. Elise and Paul C….The legal thugs who are destroying our historic structures are the “American Taliban” What the Taliban did to the historic icons in Afghanistan is no worse than what our Taliban are doing!

                2. Paul. ..That’s right. There is another description that I can’t remember… also had “unpleasantness” in it, ….And I think one that had “Inconvenience”?
                  The War of Northern Aggression is the best, imo.

                  1. Cindy Bragg – I can see The Late Unpleasantness or The War of Northern Aggression. However, it was more than in inconvenience. 😉

          2. What a neat family history. It reminds me of that question, “who are your people?” The farther South you go, the more you know about everyone’s family tree and anyone they have ever been married to. They knew all about 6 degrees of separation before anyone else. My grandfather was from Georgia, and when I set out to complete the family tree, there were treasure troves of information. That’s a completely alien concept here in CA, where neighbors sometimes never meet, let alone bring food in a crisis. Out here, if someone dies, the widower will go home to an empty fridge. It’s weird. It was so long ago when I lived there, but I remember food was like a hug in the South.

            1. Karen…..I love “food was like a hug in the South”! Beautiful thought.
              I know what you mean about knowing everyone and their family. I remember about 30 years ago, when young people stopped telling you their surname, when you would ask their name. Crazy! That’s the best part….your surname!
              I remember my father so many times, when I’d be going on a trip or something, he’d call out as I was leaving: “Tell ’em who you are!”….meaning “tell ’em you’re a Roberts!”

                1. Karen…..I miss visiting my favorite grandmother in Shreveport. On a hot summer day, she would dress-up me and my little sister,when we were young, then drive us all around Shreveport, stopping-in at each of her friends’ homes. At each home, my sister and I would sit silently, backs straight, for over an hour, usually on a pink or red velvet settee, sipping ice cold tea, and listening to the latest Shreveport gossip! Each lady’s purse, of course, carried the mandatory tiny bottle of smelling salts and floral handkerchief.
                  My little sister hated this seasonal ritual, but I loved it, declaring that I wanted to be an old Southern woman when I grew up. Happily, I achieved that goal….I even have a red velvet settee….LOL.

                  1. Cindy Bragg – do you have the purse with the floral handkerchief and smelling salt?

                    1. Paul, Yes! I do have the little ornate bottle of smelling salts…..and her satin “mules” if you know what those are? Some hankies, too. She was a character- -always wanted to sit at the back of a train and chat with the porters!

                    2. Cindy Bragg – Now the big question. Do YOU go on these Sunday visits to the neighbors with the salts and handkerchief handy? 😉 Or your own? 😉

                    3. Paul…yes (sans salts!) when our daughter was little, we also had our own “High Tea” after school at least once a week. Her children are boys..Boys are different!! Except they do enjoy sitting in our library sipping jasmine tea and (sometimes!) learning & reciting poetry….just as long as they can also play computer games, watch netflix and be boys! LOL

  8. What I see is thuggery. Their cameraman saying “it was all in fun” is like Stewie Griffin (from “Family Guy”) saying “It’s not rape if you yell ‘Surprise!'”

    So I am disappointed that local PD isn’t investigating. Probably the store owner wouldn’t file charges. DAs are pretty bad about not prosecuting when the putative victim won’t file charges.

  9. I suspect the alligator shall claim it was only “standing it’s ground” v. the store customers.

    Florida has some good things going for it, but the Miami Dolphins, that Broward County Sheriff, and this alligator owner are not among them.

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