Woman Attacked by Sea Monster

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on May 23rd, 2017

Portsmouth Residents Terrified by “Sea Creature”

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — A fun-filled day of swimming and fishing for one local group of friends and family turned into a nightmare that most only witness in the movies.

Fall River residents Dennis Vasconcellos, Rachel Carney, Joey Mailloux, Tracy Roberts, a young child and another woman were at Teddy’s Beach in the Island Park section of Portsmouth Tuesday afternoon when things got a little scary.

Half the group was fishing, while the other half were either swimming or playing in the sand. But what seemed to be the perfect summer afternoon got turned upside down the moment Vasconcellos heard his fiancĂ©, Carney, scream. Carney was screaming for help, yelling that something was after her. An unknown ominous sea creature seemed to be toying with Carney, who was swimming beyond the “Danger” sign posted at the quiet beach.

The sea creature — described as being about 15-feet long, with four-inch teeth, greenish-black skin and a white belly — was swimming around Carney and popping its head out of the water to expose its teeth and hiss in a manner that could not soon be forgotten, Carney said. “I was deep out in the water and kept hearing this hissing sound. Then I saw its head come up showing me its big teeth,” Carney said. “It kept rolling while it was swimming and knocking into my feet. I just froze.”

In the meantime, Vasconcellos said he swam out to her aide and just grabbed her from the backside and told her “don’t look back.” “This thing was big. I mean it’s head was almost the size of a basketball,” Vasconcellos said. “I just kept backing in to shore, but it was looking at me and hissing. The other people around there were pulling their kids out of the water.”

Within minutes, the pair was back near the beach and safe again.

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth’s Center for Marine Science and Technology in New Bedford, one of the leadingmarine science research centers in the region, has its lead aquaculturist baffled by the description of the serpent-like creature.

Ed Baker, the center’s lead aquaculturist, said Wednesday that the description given is unlike any animal he knows. He said it is conceivable that a tropical animal was swept northward through a strong and warm gulf current. He said a piranha was recently found in Coventry, R.I., and an alligator is on the run in Lincoln, R.I.

Therefore, the mystery animal may have been placed in the water by a local resident or it may have been carried into Rhode Island waters from the south. While the drama was playing out, Mailloux, who was nursing a badly wounded leg in the brackish water said he witnessed the whole thing.

“I just saw (Carney) swimming as fast as I’ve ever seen anyone go,” Mailloux said. “Then I saw this big, big thing spinning around the two of them. “It kind of looked like a giant eel to me, but I’m sure it wasn’t because it was so big and had that white belly.”

Mailloux and the others said it was difficult to get to sleep Tuesday night. He said he felt partly responsible because the sea creature may have been attracted to the blood pouring out from his leg into the water. Mailloux, just minutes before, had caught a fish and slipped on the rocks near the beach, cutting his legs.

“I don’t know if it was a shark or what. All I know is that (Carney and Vasconcellos) were both hysterical when they got out of the water,” Mailloux said. “I’ve lived near water for years and have never seen an animal like that, ever.” Vasconcellos is also a somewhat experienced fisherman and also stated that he has no idea what the creature was.

“My heart is still pounding. I don’t want to seem scared but people should know to keep their children close, because that thing was definitely big enough to kill us,” Vasconcellos said. “I thought I was dead.”

Portsmouth police said Wednesday that they have not received any calls about the large animal. But Vasconcellos said he would be calling the police to report what he and the rest of his group saw. Mailloux said he thinks the animal is nesting under the unusually warm waters of the protected cove. He said he saw the animal disappear near one of six broken-down piers in the area, which could be used as a nesting area.

“That thing was not from around here,” Mailloux said. “I think it might have come up with the tropical stream of water and found a good place to breed this summer.” Baker said Mailloux’s hypothesis about the animal breeding in the area is “somewhat of a stretch,” and believes that the mysterious sea creature is probably in distress and is using the pier structure as a place to hide.

Source: Gregg M. Miliote at The Herald News, Fall River, MA 2003


About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

13 Responses to “Woman Attacked by Sea Monster”

  1. NiceBrowRidge responds:

    The most interesting lake monster incident of past 50 years. I don’t understand why “experts” are saying it’s a creature that must have blown in from a tropical environment. Wouldn’t this be unclassified and remarkable anywhere on this planet?

  2. cryptokellie responds:

    I think I remember this being determined as a Fur Seal which can come down as far as Rhode island. I vacation on Block Island which is off the coast of Rhode Island and they regularly visit “Seal Harbor” there. If you’re only used to seeing circus and television “seals” which are actually Sea Lions and not true seals, than being harassed in the water by a large aggressive Fur Seal would be quite a shock. They have a torpedo shaped body and can be over 10 feet long with almost any combination of light and dark coloration. They have a large, blunt head like a dog with no outer ears showing and have an impressive array of teeth. They also can hiss, growl and roar. You can see this on YouTube.

  3. springheeledjack responds:

    Interesting indeed.

    Obviously, they ran into something outside the norm.

    I don’t buy the fur seal angle. What they described had scales and was long–fur seals don’t get anywhere near what they described…and even given to exaggeration, whatever was next to them was larger–by fifteen feet I would assume they perceived it as long than they were tall and by twice the margin.

    And while they didn’t go into it, by the descriptions from the guy, he knew fish–comparing it to a barracuda and even an eel. He said it was scaled. Even the woman said “scales” (in a nice East coast accent no less). While not experts by any means, they had enough references to other sea creatures to give them benefit’s doubt they’d know a seal if they saw one.

    Whatever it was, I definitely attribute the fish aspect to it…though the guy talked about it having a big head. While they live deep, and don’t survive long near the surface, I’m wondering if it was some form of frilled shark, even though they haven’t been recorded as being that large (again I don’t know what kind of reference they have to judge size in the water). But they have a big head and look eel like.

  4. Goodfoot responds:


    Well, I am flabbergasted. I was 100% certain you would claim it was an oarfish.

  5. cryptokellie responds:

    Re; Goodfoot;
    Put your reading glasses on.
    I never claimed anything.
    We vacation in RI every year since 1990 and I recall reading a follow-up back then that a migratory seal MAY have been the cause. Pinnipeds in the wild are very aggressive. An 10 or 11 foot long seal could easily grow to fifteen feet in length in fear and recollection. I felt then as now, very relieved that the woman was not injured.

  6. mandors responds:

    The scales are problematic. Otherwise, a northern bottlenose whale with it’s “basketball head” would seem to fit the description. It’s exactly the right size and will “hiss” through it’s blow hole.

    Again, “scales” are the only problem. Perhaps the whale had barnacles or other growths irritating it which led it to shallow water in an attempt to remove them. These growths were then mistaken for scales. Just a guess.


  7. Goodfoot responds:


    “I was 100% certain you would claim”. Notice the use of conditional tense. It is not the same thing as saying you actually claimed it.

  8. cryptokellie responds:

    You were 100% wrong…as it turns out. Nice cya at any rate.

  9. Goodfoot responds:

    cryptokellie: I was wrong. There was no CYA.

  10. cryptokellie responds:

    Okay, I was only kidding on the cya part buddy.
    Believe me, after over sixty years of following cryptostuff, no one wants to see some of these things come true more than I do. But as I get older, the burden of proof seems to get heavier and sometimes I feel that only when they flop one down on the dock and stand next to it, will anything be resolved.
    Ah well…everyone have a safe Memorial Day.

  11. thescaly1 responds:

    I’m a Carney myself, I hope these things have not developed a taste for our beautiful flesh!
    Water-borne encounters can be as scary as any, if not scarier.

    Scaled bodies? Hell … Nessie has been described as having a scaled body. A number of aliens, vampires, nixies and other unstudied cryptozoological (unshown/theoretical) creatures have been described thusly.

    I’ve had as much fascination as anyone with the more-publicized crytids, but perhaps the most telling thing of all is the sheer number of them, many based only on amazing reports from people which have not -as we might expect – been joined by other witnesses in the same area, describing the same thing, or by really convincing research.

    See the foul pain of skepticism? My dreams and fantasies of other-worldly creatures, relic populations of other hominids which somehow us fucking humans managed to outlive? Other ancient European crytids also appealed to me.

    Holy Shit! I’m as much a fan of crytids as any of you, but the habit, the preferred course of laying out all of the evidence and assessing it, never for a moment forgetting the amount of things we are still finding out, yet never forgetting for a second how much a part of us (you, me and everyone else) is given to story-telling often resulting from our own terrible perceptions, and our even worse ability to interpret those perceptions.

    I wait with bated breathe, like so many skeptics accused of being arm-chair deniers, of evidence, really convincing evidence that categorically proves the existence of Bigfoot or Nessie or Reptilians or little folk in our gardens or a form of demon-hound or countless other things.

    The only thing that makes us wait so much longer to believe is the evidence itself. Believe me, us skeptics would love to see it just as much if not more than you would.

    All the best, folks.

  12. LadyPhoenix responds:

    Whatever this was, it wasn’t a seal, or an eel, or anything else known. If it was even close to a known animal, they’d be stating that already. Even something like a pike isn’t that big, with teeth that long. Scales, eel-like shape, and a head like a basketball? Nothing we know fits that! The poor woman is clearly traumatized, and the man is as well. They are quite believable, in reporting what they saw. Whatever this is, I think it’s a mistake to assume it’s something that migrated from elsewhere. If so, name the creature, so we can all compare, and these people can see pics, and decide. The teeth….very scary!

  13. shownuff responds:

    So it’s eel like with white belly and big head with scales and hissing with teeth. Some kind of snake. But I recall what snake it would be. I own many reptiles and manage a reptile store. I’m so confused.

Sorry. Comments have been closed.

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