Authorities in Louisiana have captured a 500-pound alligator with human remains in its stomach that may be linked to a man’s disappearance in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.
The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office said the 12-foot long alligator was caught in the area of Avery Estates, not far from where Timothy Satterlee Sr. was attacked by an alligator and disappeared in Ida’s floodwaters on Aug. 30.
Satterlee was attacked outside his home in Slidell, a suburb northeast of New Orleans, and his wife got in a canoe and went to higher ground for help. When she returned, the man was no longer lying on the steps of their home where she had left him.
High-water vehicles and boats were used in an attempt to find the man, but crews did not immediately find him.
The sheriff’s office said the investigation continued “to bring some sort of closure to the family.”
Since the attack, deputies searched for Satterlee or the alligator that attacked him.
Agents with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service spotted a “large alligator” over the weekend, and authorities and hunters set traps to catch the animal.
It was captured on Monday morning and when searched, it appeared to have human remains in its stomach, the sheriff’s office said.
The St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s Office will verify if the remains belong to Satterlee.
“This is a horrible tragedy and my sincere condolences and sympathy goes to the Satterlee family,” Sheriff Randy Smith said in a Facebook post. “I know today’s findings does not bring their loved one back, but hopefully this can bring them some sort of closure. I am very proud of the hard, non-stop work, of my deputies and the other agencies who assisted, and I hope their persistence in finding this alligator will help the family with coping with their loss. We will continue to keep them in our prayers.”