Victim recounts Southern California shark attack - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Victim recounts Southern California shark attack

Posted: Updated:
In this photo by Laura Joyce of goofyfootphotography.com, two men carry a swimmer, second from right, after he was bitten by a great white shark, as lifeguards close in at left in the ocean off Southern California’s Manhattan Beach, Saturday, July 5, 2014 In this photo by Laura Joyce of goofyfootphotography.com, two men carry a swimmer, second from right, after he was bitten by a great white shark, as lifeguards close in at left in the ocean off Southern California’s Manhattan Beach, Saturday, July 5, 2014
  • RelatedMore>>

  • Shark bites man off Southern California beach

    Shark bites man off Southern California beach

    Saturday, July 5 2014 9:39 PM EDT2014-07-06 01:39:08 GMT
    A 10 foot long great white shark, hooked by a fisherwoman and fighting for its life, took a bite on a distance swimmer in the waters off the Manhattan Beach Pier Saturday. 
    A 10 foot long great white shark, hooked by a fisherwoman and fighting for its life, took a bite on a distance swimmer in the waters off the Manhattan Beach Pier Saturday. 

MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. (AP) — Steven Robles was an hour into his regular weekend swim off some of Southern California's most popular beaches when he came face-to-face with a great white shark.

The 7-foot-long juvenile had been trying to free itself from a fisherman's hook for about half an hour when it attacked.

"It came up to the surface, it looked at me and attacked me right on the side of my chest," Robles told KABC-TV. "That all happened within two seconds, I saw the eyes of the shark as I was seeing it swim towards me. It lunged at my chest, and it locked into my chest."

He tried to pry open the shark's mouth, but it quickly disappeared.

Robles was familiar with the waters of the Southern California coast. His Saturday morning routine included a swim from Hermosa Beach north to Manhattan Beach with fellow amateur distance swimmers, and last summer he completed a difficult swim approximately 20 miles from Santa Catalina Island to the Rancho Palos Verdes peninsula to raise money for a school in Nicaragua.

Robles had been going for 2 miles with about a dozen friends Saturday when the attack happened around 9:30 a.m., fellow swimmer Nader Nejadhashemi said Sunday.

"He said 'I've been bit,' and he was screaming," said Nejadhashemi, who didn't see the shark even though he was just 5 feet away. "Then I saw the blood."

Nejadhashemi reached his friend and checked that "all his extremities were intact," then comforted him as others in the group flagged a nearby paddle boarder.

"I don't know how we managed to push him on the paddle board but we did," he said. Once several surfers came over to help pull the board in, Robles was on his way to the shore, where paramedics treated his wounds.

He was taken to the hospital but by Sunday morning had been released. Robles did not return messages left Sunday at several numbers listed under his name.

The shark remained in the area for about 20 minutes and then disappeared into the murky water, said Rick Flores, a Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman. The beaches remained open, but a mile-long stretch was temporarily off-limits to swimmers. Police also prohibited fishing from the pier where the fisherman hooked the shark until Tuesday.

It's illegal to fish for great white sharks. The fisherman told several local media that he was trying to catch a bat ray, not a shark, and that he didn't cut the line sooner because of how many swimmers were in the water. It wasn't immediately clear whether the wildlife officials were investigating; a department spokeswoman did not return calls seeking comment.

Shark sightings are on the rise at some Southern California beaches, especially in the waters off Manhattan Beach, which is a popular spot for surfers and paddle boarders. Large crowds were at the beach for the warm holiday weekend.

Shark attacks are rare. Since 1950, there have been 101 great white shark attacks on humans off California — 13 of them resulted in deaths, the state Department of Fish and Wildlife said.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • California drivers must give bikes 3-foot buffer

    California drivers must give bikes 3-foot buffer

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:27 PM EDT2014-09-16 19:27:52 GMT
    Californians will now need to take extra care to steer clear of cyclists. 
    Californians will now need to take extra care to steer clear of cyclists. 
  • City Council reviews request for Hays defense

    City Council reviews request for Hays defense

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:27 PM EDT2014-09-16 19:27:18 GMT
    The City Council Tuesday authorized the City Attorney's Office to set aside as much as $250,000 to retain outside counsel to defend former San Diego police Officer Christopher Hays against any lawsuits filed by women who contend he groped and illegally detained them. 
    The City Council Tuesday authorized the City Attorney's Office to set aside as much as $250,000 to retain outside counsel to defend former San Diego police Officer Christopher Hays against any lawsuits filed by women who contend he groped and illegally detained them. 
  • Hearing for woman accused of shooting son-in-law

    Hearing for woman accused of shooting son-in-law

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:36 PM EDT2014-09-16 18:36:31 GMT
    A preliminary hearing is scheduled Tuesday for a 63-year-old woman accused of fatally shooting her son-in-law in Fallbrook after he made a comment about what she was wearing. 
    A preliminary hearing is scheduled Tuesday for a 63-year-old woman accused of fatally shooting her son-in-law in Fallbrook after he made a comment about what she was wearing. 
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.