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Shark sightings cause southern Calif. beaches to close

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. -- Swimmers and surfers have been ordered out of the water at two Southern California beaches after a pair of great white sharks were spotted near shore. 

The Los Angeles Times reports that a helicopter crew saw a great white as long as 14 feet swimming 100 feet off Orange County’s Bolsa Chica State Beach Friday morning.

Lt. Claude Panis of the Huntington Beach Fire Department says a juvenile great white, only about 7 feet long, was also seen.

The waters off of Orange County’s Sunset and Bolsa Chica beaches were ordered cleared, although the beaches themselves remained open.

State parks spokesman Kevin Pearsall says people will likely be allowed to return to the water after 24 hours if there are no other shark sightings.

Video of the capture of a another great white shark, being yanked up on to the Huntington Beach Pier by a group of fisherman, could be a crime and now state fish and wildlife wardens are investigating, CBS Los Angeles reports

The video was shot Tuesday evening and was streamed live on Facebook.

Huntington Beach lifeguards say they saw it for the first time on Friday.

“As soon as they have a visual of the fish on the surface and they determine that it’s not legal to fish for, they need to cut the line right way,” said Lt. Claude Panis, a safety officer with the Huntington Beach Marine Patrol.

Great white sharks are a protected species. A fish and wildlife spokesman says there’s good chance the shark — between 5-6 feet long — died from it’s injuries. Witnesses said the fishermen tossed the shark back into the water. It is unclear if the shark was alive at the time.

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