Widow of Illinois man attacked by swan files wrongful death lawsuit

The widow of an Illinois man who drowned in 2012 after being attacked by a swan filed a wrongful death lawsuit on Tuesday.  

Anthony Hensley, 37, was attacked by a swan while kayaking in a retention pond at the Bay Colony condominium complex in Maine Township, Illinois in April 2012.

Hensley was reportedly attacked by a swan and at some point fell into the water. Hensley – who was wearing boots and heavy clothing – drowned before he could make it to land.

His death was ruled an accident. 

Hensley’s widow field a wrongful death lawsuit Tuesday in Cook County Circuit Court against the property management companies that owned and operated Bay Colony, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Hensley’s widow is seeking at least $50,000 in damages.

The Tribune said it reached out to the companies named in the suit, but did not hear back.

His widow's lawsuit stated that the companies’ and the homeowners/condominium associations’ negligence caused her husband's death.  

The lawsuit contended that the companies “should have known the swans are strongly territorial with a dangerous propensity to attack,” and that they should be held liable for “knowingly keeping dangerous animals on the premises.”

Swans, known for being territorial and aggressive, are often used by property management to keep the population of geese from growing too large.

Hensley was a frequent visitor at the Bay Colony complex, where he was tasked with taking care of the swans. He often brought his kayak to feed and tend to the birds, the Chicago Tribune reported.