Teen tourist recovering after shark bite in Destin

Courtesy Oakaloosa County Sheriff's Office

DESTIN, Fla. (WKRG) — 17-year-old Caitlyn Taylor suffered a bite wound to her leg Sunday while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico behind a condominium at 1040 East Highway 98 in Destin.

Taylor suffered six puncture wounds from a shark bite, but was able to punch the shark as it was biting her, fighting it off.

Emergency personnel said Caitlyn had scrape wounds on her left leg and puncture wounds on her right leg near her knee. She required 80 stitches to that leg.

Witnesses say a five-foot shark bit the girl while she was in waist-deep water around 3:39 p.m.

Caitlyn says she initially thought it was a dolphin in the water. It was in a wave headed towards her. She says it took her by the legs, tugged on her, and immediately turned her lose. The type of shark is undetermined. She was treated at the Destin Emergency Room.

Family members say they were in town for Caitlyn to play in a softball tournament.

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