2:40 PM PDT, June 8, 2021
A Florida man is lucky to be alive after an alligator chomped down on his head, leaving a nasty wound on his scalp. Jeffrey Heim, 25, was diving for prehistoric shark teeth in a river near Tampa when he was attacked by the gator without warning.
Witnesses frantically called 911 and he was rushed to the hospital.
Heim says getting bitten by an alligator felt like “a blunt force object” hitting me. “I was thinking, where in the world did that boat come from?”
He then realized he wasn’t hit by a boat, but a hungry gator.
“And it comes at me. We were looking at each other for about four or five seconds,” Heim said. “I feel my head and my hair, and I see the blood.”
Heim showed Inside Edition his wounds, which included a small skull fracture and two puncture wounds on his wrist. He received 34 staples on his head.
“I thought I was going to die right there, but I think it got me on the perfect spot on my head for me to survive,” Heim said.
In the ambulance, Heim took a video of himself telling everyone he was alright.
Heim said he couldn’t stop thinking about the treasure he was looking for when he was attacked — a tooth from a giant Megalodon shark from millions of years ago.
Heim told Inside Edition that he doesn’t want the animal that bit him to be killed.
“I don’t want it to die. It shouldn’t die because I made a mistake,” Heim said.
Heim says his mistake was not taking into consideration that it is mating season, when alligators are more aggressive. He spent a day and a half in the hospital and is taking antibiotics to ward off infection.