HOUSTON — Residents bordering a West Houston reservoir say an alligator known to quietly sun itself outside the ponds was apparently run over on a busy road but then its carcass was dismembered by people who wanted its teeth and limbs as souvenirs.

Convenience store owner Sam Manesiya says he spotted the dead 6-foot-long gator on the side of the road when he opened his store last Friday. By later that day, he says he saw one woman cutting off one of the alligator’s feet.

Another nearby resident, Juaquin Aguilar, tells Houston television station KHOU he was angry as he chased away folks who were pulling out the gator’s teeth and cutting off limbs.

State wildlife authorities say dismembering a dead animal is a misdemeanor. Alligators also are federally protected.

Information from: KHOU-TV, http://www.khou.com

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