Teen Spears Shark He Watched Kill Friend

Jay Muscat, 17, dies after shark bites leg
By Shelley Hazen,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 30, 2014 8:53 AM CST
Teen Spears Shark He Watched Kill Friend
A great white shark is shown.   (AP Photo/Discovery Channel, Andrew Brandy Casagrande)

A 17-year-old Australian boy is dead after being attacked by what authorities suspect was a 13-foot-long great white—and a friend who was alongside him managed to survive after shooting the animal with his spear gun. "The shark hit me first, then attacked Jay," Matt Pullella wrote on Facebook, as per 9News. "The shark turned and came for me, I pushed the spear gun down its throat and fired the gun." The pair were spearfishing roughly 130 feet off Three Stripes Beach, on Australia's southwest coast, yesterday when Jay Muscat was bitten on the leg; fisheries official Rich Fletcher says the shark may have been lured by the fish they caught, Perth Now reports. Jay was pulled into a passing boat, where people tried to revive him, but he died before they reached shore, the Australian adds.

Fletcher says that, based on bite marks and witness reports, it was likely a great white, and that an effort is underway to find and kill the shark (though the hunt was ended today due to rough seas). "Obviously if we find a shark with a spear in it, that's clear-cut, but that's probably unlikely," he says. Perth Now notes a sizable shark was seen a number of times at nearby Cheynes Beach in the week before the attack. In his Instagram profile, Jay called himself "a salty young dog" whose "thing" was spearfishing and fishing; pictures of the recent high school grad posing with fish he caught are peppered across social media. Jay is the eighth shark victim in five years; more recently, a teen was killed in 2013 and this man was killed while swimming. In October, a surfer lost both hands in a suspected great white attack. (More shark attack stories.)

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