Jail Time Might Have Been Better


They say, “What goes around, comes around.” For one unlucky man, karma caught up more quickly than expected.

During an evening in November, 22-year-old Matthew Riggins and an accomplice were spotted suspiciously lurking behind homes in a Barefoot Bay, Fla., neighborhood, reportedly wearing dark clothing and tampering with private property. After receiving several calls from concerned residents, the Brevard County police, their K-9 units and even a helicopter were dispatched to track down the devious duo.

The officers and their search dogs looked high and low, but after several hours, it seemed the crooks had made a clean getaway … or so they thought. As police later learned, while Riggins was on the lam, he decided to call his girlfriend and let her know his late-night “activity” would require him to find a spot to hide out for a while.

Unfortunately for Riggins, his “lay low” area of choice would prove to be the worst of his decisions that night: While the cops and their K-9s were trying to sniff him out, Riggins hid in a neighborhood pond, which just so happened to be closely guarded by an 11′ alligator (who needs a guard dog when you’ve got a neighborhood ’gator watch?). The man’s family reported him missing the next day, and investigators discovered Riggins — having trespassed on the alligator’s turf — ended up as a late night snack for the massive beast.

Despite the meal, the gator didn’t finish with such a sweet deal either. In accordance with Florida law, once the area investigators determined how Riggins met his end, animal control was forced to put the Barefoot Bay neighborhood alligator down. Sounds like the makings of an old-fashioned, cautionary tale if I ever heard one: If you steal ’n cheat, you might git eat!