South Carolina

Man found dead with alligator bites was cleaning yard behind his SC home, report says

Police found a South Carolina man dead in a pond with what appeared to be bites from an alligator over the weekend, officials say.

The 79-year-old man had been doing yard work by the lake behind his house when he went missing Saturday, according to the incident report.

The man’s wife told police the last time she saw him was about 10 a.m. at their home on Kiawah Island, the report said.

The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office said it got the missing person call at about 2 p.m. and it found the man’s body with suspected gator bites soon after.

Officers brought in search dogs, a boat unit and a helicopter to help with the search, The State reports. Investigators found bush trimmings and a pair of cutting shears by the pond near the home, according to the incident report on the death investigation.

A helicopter spotted the man’s body in the water on the other side of the pond, according to the report.

State wildlife officials also helped with the search after “someone reported seeing an alligator on top of a man at the pond,” WCSC reports.

Department of Natural Resources divers are using sonar to try to find the alligator in the pond, according to the TV station.

The Sheriff’s Office has not released the man’s name and says the county coroner will do an autopsy to figure out how he died.

Kiawah Island is less than an hour from Charleston. The man was reported missing from his home at the Kiawah Island Club, a neighborhood around a golf course on the marsh side of the island.

Related stories from Charlotte Observer

Charles Duncan covers what’s happening right now across North and South Carolina, from breaking news to fun or interesting stories from across the region. He holds degrees from N.C. State University and Duke and lives two blocks from the ocean in Myrtle Beach.