The nine-foot alligator with a human body in its jaws seen by Florida residents on Tuesday has been captured and killed by an animal trapper.
The dead alligator was found to have human remains in its stomach.
“A contract trapper for the state caught and killed a nine-foot alligator last night around 8:30. The medical examiner examined the contents of its stomach this morning and found human remains that match the missing parts of the body,” Lakeland Police Department’s Sgt. Gary Gross told People.
On Tuesday, an eyewitness in Lake Hunter in Lakeland, Florida made a report to 911 about seeing an alligator with human body parts in its mouth roaming around.
“I’ve got a dead body over here in the lake it looks like an alligator is trying to pull him down under,” the 911 caller told the operator.
When the police responded to the scene and confronted the alligator, the animal released from its mouth the white male human body, which was missing some body parts.
“He rolled a few times in the water and then let go [of the body] and swam off,” Sgt. Ross narrated.
Authorities are not yet certain what caused the death of the victim and how he ended up in the reptile’s mouth but investigations are ongoing.
“We haven’t determined manner or cause of death because of the body parts that are missing and the decomposition from the water,” Gross explained.
The police added that the autopsy has been completed but the release of the toxicology results could take up to a month. Authorities have also found a few items that could be related to the case such as a backpack found at the boat ramp, a shirt, and a few other items.
Sgt. Gross also warned the public that the alligators in Lake Hunter may be more aggressive than usual from April to June – the reptiles’ mating season.