An investigation is underway after authorities in Florida found a massive alligator carrying human remains in its mouth. The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office responded to the area of 134th Avenue North and 121st Street North in an unincorporated area of Largo around 1:50 p.m. Friday (September 22), according to a news release.
Deputies and Florida Fish and Wildlife officers reportedly found a 13-foot, 8.5-inch alligator and the victim's body in a waterway. The reptile was "humanely killed" and removed from the waterway before PCSO's Dive Team recovered the remains, officials wrote.
In a Saturday (September 23) update, deputies identified the victim as 41-year-old Sabrina Peckham. The manner and cause of death are still pending from the Pinellas County Medical Examiner's office.
"I could tell there was a body in his mouth, so I started recording," JaMarcus Bullard recounted. "I picked up a rock to hit it, it was a lower torso in his mouth. It just like swam backward down into the lower canal."
Bullard said he reported the gruesome situation to a local fire department, who called authorities to the scene. Other residents were shocked that such a huge creature was lurking near their homes.
The sheriff's office said the investigation is ongoing.