COLUMBIA, S.C. — Social media is buzzing with talk of alligator sightings in Columbia. Multiple people said they saw an alligator at the Barnie Jordan boat ramp.
"It looked like a bump in the water that didn't really fit into the water," Jackson Timberlake said.
That's how 7-year-old Jackson Timberlake described seeing an alligator. One that was a little to close for comfort.
"I was scared and kind of excited because I saw a crocodile [alligator] which hardly ever happens, and I was really scared because I didn't want it to bite my foot off," Timberlake said.
Timberlake was at the Barnie Jordan boat ramp at the end of Rosewood Drive.
"I was with my grandpa and my dog," Timberlake said. "I wasn't in the water, only my feet were a little and I was playing in the sand. My poppa told me there was a crocodile [alligator] and I thought he was joking, but I ran up anyways and then I went back down and he actually pointed at it and said crocodile [alligator] coming upstream."
Timberlake said he was nervous and scared once he saw the alligator.
"I ran up the hill and I went faster then my dog which never happens," Timberlake said.
Then he immediately told his mom.
"I got a text message that said we saw an alligator, so I called them and there were two voices in the back ground, one going, mommy, mommy we saw an alligator and my dad saying, we would of taken a picture if we weren't running up the hill," Melissa Rice said.
The same week and in the same spot Rice said one of her neighbors had the same encounter, but his was little scarier.
"In the exact spot, he said they heard a splash. He was in the water up to about his chest when they looked over the alligator was swimming at them," Rice said. "And then the alligator actually got up on the bank, so that was a little more then what happened when they were down here and that makes me nervous."
But for Timberlake and his mother, they are glad it was just a close sighting.
"He isn't getting in the water, that's for sure," Rice said. "He was excited and I think it's a novelty because he is 7 and I don't think he realizes how serious it was."
The Department of Natural Resources showed up and didn't find the gator, but they said if anyone else sees it to call them immediately.