Man Nicknamed ‘Bubba’ Stole Gator From Mini-Golf Course, Repeatedly Threw It Up In The Air To ‘Teach It A Lesson,’ Police Say

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Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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Authorities arrested a Florida man for allegedly stealing an alligator from a mini-golf course and repeatedly attempting to throw it up on the rooftop of a building, police said.

William “Bubba” Hodge allegedly stole the alligator from a Congo River Golf enclosure in Daytona Beach early Friday, then repeatedly attempted to throw the animal onto the Metz Lounge roof in order to “teach it a lesson,” authorities said, according to WKMG. While holding it by the tail, the 32-year-old suspect allegedly slammed the reptile against the ground and an awning then dropped the gator and stomped on it twice.

Hodge admitted to jumping over the enclosure’s fence where he wrestled the gator before managing to steal it, the outlet reported. (RELATED: Justice Department Accuses ‘Tiger King’ Star Jeffrey Lowe And Wife Lauren Of Animal Abuse)

Hodge is currently residing in the Volusia County Jail on charges of animal cruelty, alligator poaching, burglary of an unoccupied dwelling, criminal mischief and first-degree petit theft, according to jail records. He is set at a $4,500 bond.

While in custody, Hodge attempted to flood the cell by clogging the toilet with balls of toilet paper, WKMG reported. He allegedly threatened to flood the entire prison when confronted by police.

Police returned the alligator to its home in the aftermath of the arrest, the Daytona Beach Shores Department of Public Safety stated. The reptile is expected to survive from its unidentified injuries, according to The New York Post.