A Florida man was killed and eaten by an alligator while he was fleeing authorities. Allegedly, the man robbed multiple Barefoot Bay homes before police tried unsuccessfully to chase him down. Although police were not able to catch the alleged burglar, an alligator did -- and violently so.
The last time 22-year-old Matthew Riggins was seen, he was running away from police into a wooded area. The next day, he was reported missing by his girlfriend. According to his girlfriend, Riggins and another person were planning to rob multiple homes in Brevard County. On Nov. 23, ten days after Riggins told the girlfriend of his plans, police found what was left of the young man's body after an alligator attack. Riggins' remains were not identified until Monday, Dec. 7.
Aggressive Alligator Encountered by Dive Teams
Divers who recovered Riggins' body said that they found an aggressive alligator in the area. Authorities believe that the alligator killed the young man. The violent animal has since been captured and euthanized by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Here's what a spokesperson for the Brevard County Sheriff's Office said: "When the body was found, it had injuries that were consistent with an alligator attack ... We had trappers euthanize the gator and when we opened it up, there were some remains inside that were consistent with injuries found on the body."
Bite Marks Found on Riggins' Remains
The alligator appears to have attacked and killed the man, but the animal did not consume his entire body. The cause of death was drowning, which is typical in alligator attacks. Usually alligators will capture their prey with their powerful jaws, pull them underwater until they have drowned -- then allow the remains to decompose before eating it. By the bite marks on Riggins' body, investigators believe that he was killed by the alligator.
As for Riggins' alleged accomplice to the robberies, he has since been captured by police, but he has not been cooperative in police investigations. The alleged accomplice has not been named by authorities, but he will likely face criminal charges of robbery and breaking and entering in this case.
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