Days after a gator kills a Texas man at a marina, the same animal was killed himself by another gunman. State investigators confirm the same alligator that killed 28-year-old Tommie Woodward last week at Adam’s Bayou, in Orange, is the same one that wound up dead on Monday.
Body parts of Woodward were discovered inside the dead alligator’s throat, according to officials with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Click 2 Houston reports that the reptile was shot at a different location than where it killed Woodward, before its body back where the tragedy took place.
Wildlife officials say that an unidentified gunman shot the gator in the head with a large caliber firearm prior to removing it and leaving at Adam’s Bayou. Game wardens have been keeping an eye out for the gator that killed the Texas man since the tragic incident. Woodward ignored warning signs about not swimming in the area, but he disregarded them. He was reportedly taking a late-night swim when he lost his life.
Game wardens are investigating the alligator’s death, calling it “illegal harvesting of wildlife.”
12 News reports that killing an alligator is a Class C misdemeanor, with a fine up to $500.
The report further states that a group of men claim they trapped the gator, and shot him, and left him on the deck. The men who shot the gator that killed the Texas man were gone by the time game wardens arrived. One unidentified man, however, has turned himself in and wants to talk with police about shooting the alligator.
Harlan Hatcher, a nuisance control hunter, was called to the scene. He had the help of Orange firefighters and game wardens to get the gator inside the truck. Hatcher cut open the alligator and found Woodward’s remains, thereby confirming it was the one that killed Tommie Woodward by dragging him in the water and drowning him. Woodward’s body parts are being sent — along with the rest of his body — back to St. Louis, Missouri, where his family lives.
Hatcher explains that it’s never a good idea to feed alligators because it makes them a threat and they have no fear of humans.
Many are arguing that the gator that killed the Texas man was just doing what alligators do, and that Woodward defied warnings about not swimming in the marina where a prevalent threat of alligators was posted.
[Image via 12 News]