A disturbing video recently surfaced on social media showing a man on a boat shooting a hammerhead shark multiple times. People on social media have speculated that the man who gunned down the shark appears to be Siesta Key star Alex Kompothecras, yet the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) hasn’t confirmed any suspects.
The video shows the hammerhead shark being caught by a man with a fishing rod. Another man lifts the shark just above the water and fires two shots with a handgun into the animal’s gills, laughing as the shark starts to bleed profusely. The needless cruelty inflicted on the shark has sparked widespread disgust, which many viewers expressed in tweets about the cruel killing:
— Michelle Elizabeth (@Mronz) August 1, 2017
According to reports, 22-year-old Kompothecras posed with a dead hammerhead shark in a photo that he posted on Instagram and later deleted. While the FWC hasn’t released any names, media outlets have reported that the shooter in the video is wearing the same clothing that Kompothecras is wearing in the deleted photo (a red “Make America Great Again” hat and a long-sleeved gray shirt).
The Siesta Key star and self-proclaimed “Fishing Fanatic” has also shared pics of himself posing with injured or dead fish he caught while fishing off a boat, photos of himself posing with a dead deer and an alligator he hunted, and another of himself and a friend pouring beer into a grouper’s mouth.
This story reminds us of a string of incidents in which animals have been tortured or killed by humans recently. A baby dolphin died after being dragged from the ocean and passed around for selfies by a crowd of tourists. Just days later, a shark reportedly sustained severe head trauma after being pulled from the ocean by a man who wanted photos. In another incident, a video surfaced of laughing men in a boat dragging an impaled shark at breakneck speed through the water.
Marine and land animals are at constant risk of being senselessly abused and killed at the hands of people with apparently nothing going on in their heads or hearts. A swan recently died in Macedonia when a woman forced the terrified animal to pose for pictures, and two men were recently seen drinking and “surfing” on a turtle.
What You Can Do to Help
NEVER touch marine animals or remove them from the water.
If an animal appears to be in distress or is injured, or if you see anyone harassing an animal, get involved. Try to stop the act, and contact local authorities immediately. If authorities are unresponsive, contact PETA.
Please spread the word! This hammerhead shark cannot be saved, but sharing this story and informing others that animals deserve to be left in peace is a huge step in the right direction.
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