Grant Thompson, a Texas teen and animal lover, died earlier this year in a Lowe’s parking lot after a venomous monocled cobra bit him several times on the body. Originally, the death was ruled an accident and resulted in a massive hunt for the venomous snake. However, a new autopsy report reveals that the teen likely committed suicide by allowing the snake to bite him multiple times on the body.
The Daily Mail reports that pet shop employee Grant Thompson, 18, was found unresponsive in his vehicle parked in a Lowe’s parking lot in Austin, Texas. The teen had suffered numerous bites from a venomous monocled cobra. The teen was rushed to the hospital but later pronounced dead from the bites. The police found an empty cage inside the vehicle that once housed the cobra, but officers could not find the cobra itself. Therefore, a massive hunt began for the potentially deadly snake.
The cobra was later found near the Lowe’s parking lot where it had went missing. Austin Animal Protection said that when the snake was found, it was already deceased but notes that despite the snake’s death, he was relieved when a 911 call came into the dispatcher noting a dead snake on the side of the road near the Lowe’s. Sloat says he is sad the snake had to die, but it is best from a public safety standpoint.
“When I got the call, I was greatly relieved, obviously. I kind of wish the snake was alive, but for the public’s sake — the fact that we found it. This is a busy area, a lot of cars parked here already, so the public definitely could have been at risk with this snake.”
With the snake found, the animal was placed on ice so that it could be used for identification after Grant’s autopsy. Although the autopsy confirmed the deceased cobra was the snake that bit Thompson, it also uncovered something even more startling. According to the autopsy report, Grant Thompson did not die by an accidental snakebite. Instead, the coroner reports that the teen died from “suicide by snakebite.” Therefore, it seems that the coroner believes the teen allowed the snake to bite him multiple times with the intent to kill himself.
The Statesman notes that the conclusion of suicide was reached after the Travis County Medical Examiner’s Office examined the body. The coroner noted that there were a number of factors that played into the decision to rule the death a suicide. First, it was noted by the coroner that Grant Thompson appeared to have made no attempt to remove the snake once it punctured the skin. The coroner knows that the teen did not attempt to pull the snake away because the bite marks themselves appeared without tug marks.
“The bite sites showed no evidence that he tried to pull away from the snake as it struck.”
Additionally, the coroner noted that Thompson was right-handed, and the first bite from the cobra took place on his left shoulder. This would be consistent with someone who is dominantly right-handed when handling a snake. It was also noted that Thompson had a history of “suicidal ideation” and that, as an avid snake lover, he would have known the cobra’s bite to be fatal if not treated. The coroner also found signs of marijuana and amphetamines in Thomspon’s system at the time of his death.
According to the report, a snakebite from a monocled cobra can cause death in as little as 30 minutes as it results in respiratory failure. What do you think about the coroner’s report that the Texas teen died from suicide by snakebite?
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