Beach at Moss Park remains closed after gator bites girl

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — One of Orange County's most popular lakes remained closed to swimmers Monday after a 10-year-old girl was bitten by a 9-foot alligator in waist-deep water.

The incident was reported Saturday along the shores of Lake Mary Jane at Moss Park.

The cordoned-off swimming area where Juliana Ossa, 10, was bitten will remain closed for at least a week as a precaution.

Signs were posted last year to warn swimmers of the potential dangers that lurk in the lake's amber waters.

A report released Monday said Ossa had minor teeth punctures on her leg and that her injuries were not life-threatening.

Juliana’s father, Jamie, said he’s proud of how his daughter handled the attack by knocking the animal’s nose to wriggle free. It’s a tactic she learned by a visit to Gatorland.

Jamie said he’s overwhelmed that her story has attracted national attention.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers kept the animal in sight until trappers arrived.

The trappers hooded and euthanized the animal, which was then pulled from the swimming area of the lake.

FWC completed its review of the area Monday.

FWC contractor George Walrath, who captured and killed the alligator, said he has already caught 38 animals in the last week.

Walrath said he typically traps 100 gators a month, but it's the height of breeding season for the reptiles.

An FWC spokesman said the agency found no wrongdoing on the part of the county.

It's up to the county to decide when to reopen the beach. Officials didn't say whether other parks would be closed.