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California fisherman struggles to get rid of great white shark

By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |   Jan. 20, 2016 at 9:42 AM

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., Jan. 20 (UPI) -- A man fishing from a California pier suffered fisherman's remorse and spent 15 minutes trying to get rid of his catch -- a 6-foot great white shark.

Penny Novak, who captured video of the struggle Monday at the San Clemente Pier, said she was walking with her family when they saw the fisherman struggling with his line.

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"When we looked over the edge, there it was," Novak told KNSD-TV. "Its head was fully out of the water, its mouth was open. It was just like something out of a movie."

Novak said the fisherman struggled with the shark for about 15 minutes, but he wasn't trying to reel it in -- he was trying to let it go.

"Then finally, it went under the water for a little bit. We all thought maybe it died, and then all of the sudden it came back up and we heard like a big, loud crunch, and then it like moved around a little bit and broke free and then took off," Novak said.

"I was a little freaked out because my family likes to surf so I was thinking, oh my gosh, this is just like 'Jaws,'" she said.

Andrew Nosal, a marine biologist with Scripps Institution of Oceanography, said the approximately 6-foot shark appeared to be a juvenile, as adult great whites usually measure more than 9 feet long.

He said the shark is too small to pose a danger to humans.

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