SUMTER — A Sumter man is safe after he was rescued from a snake and alligator-infested swamp six days after he was last seen.
Tonyia McGirt, a public information officer for the Sumter Police, said 52-year-old Fredric Richburg, hungry and covered with mosquito bites but otherwise doing well, was recovering on Monday at the Tuomey Regional Medical Center.
Police said fishermen heard shouts from Richburg in a swamp southwest of the city at about 8 p.m. Sunday evening after heavy rains drenched the area over the weekend.
Firefighters rescued Richburg from the swamp that had dense underbrush.
McGirt said that water in the swamp is about waist deep and Richburg was on grassy area when he was found. Firefighters were able to put an extension ladder across the water and Richburg crossed to safety, she said.
Police said Richburg had been last seen walking from his apartment about 5 miles away on the morning of Monday, Aug. 4. A friend reported him missing to the police three days later.
“We think he was out there Monday, Tuesday at the latest,” McGirt said. “He said he didn’t have any food but he did drink the water from the creek though.”
It was not immediately clear how he Richburg ended up in the swamp.
“We were just happy we were able to find him,” McGirt said.