LARGO, Fla. – Law enforcement authorities in Florida have identified the woman whose body was found in the jaws of a nearly 14-foot alligator. A makeshift memorial and flowers lay at the spot where the discovery was made last week.
Deputies with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office responded about 2 p.m. on Friday to the area of 134th Avenue North and 121st Street North in unincorporated Largo after receiving a report of a body spotted in the waterway. With the assistance of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the alligator was “humanely killed and removed” from the water. Then, deputies were able to safely recover the woman’s remains.
The victim was identified Saturday as 41-year-old Sabrina Peckham. The manner and cause of death is pending, the Miami Herald reported.
A woman who self-identified on Facebook as Peckham’s 23-year-old daughter, Breauna Dorris, said her mother was homeless and living in a wooded area nearby, Fox 11 reported. Dorris said she is experiencing “unbearable pain.”
“My mother, Sabrina Peckham was the victim of the alligator attack at McCay Creek,” she wrote. “My mother was a part of the homeless population that lived in the nearby wooded area. It is believed that she may have been walking to or from her camp site near the creek in the dark and the alligator attacked from the water.”
“No matter how you put it, no one deserves to die like this,” Dorris continued, adding, “I’m so sorry this happened to you. I pray you are at peace and you are no longer struggling or hurting.”
Breauna Dorris and her mother Sabrina Peckham, whose remains were found in the jaws of an alligator.
“She was selfless. One hundred percent selfless,” Dorris said of her mother, according to Fox 13 Tampa Bay. “She was homeless herself. But that didn’t matter. She would give you the last piece of food off her plate. She would give you the shirt off her back if she needed to.”
A witness said he could see a body in the alligator’s mouth before deputies arrived at the scene, Fox News reported.
“I could tell there was a body in his mouth, so I started recording,” JaMarcus Bullard said. “I came down to the fire department and reported it to them.”
A makeshift memorial and flowers are now at the scene where Peckham’s lifeless body was discovered and the alligator was euthanized.