Gruesome Discovery of Woman’s Remains Found in the Jaws of 13-Foot Alligator Leaves Florida Community on Edge

by Xara Aziz

A Florida woman has been pronounced dead after police say she was found in the jaws of a 13-foot alligator, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office confirmed.

The gruesome discovery took place at a Largo canal, where a witness said they had seen the woman’s remains clenched in an alligator’s mouth. When deputies arrived at the scene, the large reptile was killed on the scene.

Police later identified the woman as Sabrina Peckham, 41, who was found in the waterway. An investigation is ongoing to determine what led to her death.

It was shortly before 2 PM Friday when authorities received a call about a person spotted in the waterway.

One witness, Jamarcus Bullard, explained that he was headed to a job interview when he saw an alligator clasping a human with its jaws.

“I noticed it had a body in its mouth – like a lower torso – so once I saw that I ran straight to the fire department,” Bullard told Fox 13. “It was my first time seeing a gator in real life so I was like it’s pretty cool, but once I saw what it had I was like ‘is that like a mannequin?’ It was pale and white.”

The witness also told 10 Tampa Bay that “It was just clamped onto it, and swam backwards to the bottom of the canal… I just couldn’t believe it was real.”

Shortly after Peckham was found, her family created a fundraising page, which stated that she was living in a homeless camp near a wooded area when she died.

“It is believed that she may have been walking to or from her campsite near the creek in the dark and the alligator attacked from the water,” Breauna Dorris, who said she was the victim’s daughter, wrote on Facebook. “No one deserves to die like this.” 

Police say after the animal was killed, it was removed from the waterway before a rescue team could recover the remains of the victim.

Meanwhile, news footage captured shots of the alligator alongside the road surrounded by police and emergency vehicles.

The Medical Examiner’s Office has not yet determined Peckham’s cause of death.

Residents of the area say they have spotted alligators in the past before, but never the size of the one that killed the victim.

“It’s crazy. My kids walk by there all the time,” Jennifer Dean told 10 Tampa Bay. “So it’s really scary. I’ve seen four or five-feet gators but nothing that big.”

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