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Shark bites 9-year-old boy as he body surfed at Florida beach

The boy’s mother said they were only in the water for a few minutes before the incident

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A 9-year-old Minnesota boy was bitten by a shark as he body surfed in Miami Beach over the weekend, his parents said.

Kristine Weiskopf told WPLG she and her son Jay were in the water for only a few minutes when the shark bit the boy.

“I was holding his hand the whole time and he was kind of body surfing a little bit and he had fallen on his stomach,” she said.

When she pulled him up, she said she saw a chunk of skin missing from his shoulder.

“He just said, ‘Ow,’ and I looked down and there was about a 4-foot gray shark just kinda swimming away, so I just scooped him up and ran him up the beach,” she said.

A Miami Beach Fire Rescue crew took the child to the hospital where surgeons closed the large wound, his mother said.

“He’s such a great kid and we’re still in shock, but thankful. We thank God that he didn’t take his life. That he’s gonna be OK,” the child’s father, Ren Weiskopf told the TV station.

The Weiskopf’s said they’re not only concerned for their son, but also for others out on the water.

“What I don’t like right now is that the beach is still open, and kids are still down there playing, and they are in the same spot where my son just got attacked. I don’t know if it’s just because of spring break of whatever, but the beach should be closed,” Ren said.

The parents said that doctors are worried about the possibility of infection and the long-term effects that the injuries could have on Jay’s mobility, but they also told the Weiskopf’s that because he is young, the prognosis is good.

“He just wants to go home and it’s really sad because we had so much fun planned,” Kristine said.


About the Authors:

Liane Morejon is an Emmy-winning reporter who joined the Local 10 News family in January 2010. Born and raised in Coral Gables, Liane has a unique perspective on covering news in her own backyard.

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local 10.com.