Sheriff finds woman dead with snake around her neck

A woman was found dead Wednesday night in a building described by Indiana State Police as a "reptile home."

Posted: Oct 31, 2019 12:43 PM
Updated: Nov 1, 2019 6:29 AM

OXFORD, Ind. (WLFI) — A woman was found dead Wednesday night in a building described by Indiana State Police as a "reptile home."

Sgt. Kim Riley says Benton County Sheriff Don Munson found 36-year-old Laura Hurst from Battle Ground in the home with an 8-foot Reticulated Python around her neck. It happened about 9 p.m. in the 600 block of North Dan Patch Drive in Oxford. Riley said the building is near where Munson lives. Medics arrived and attempted life-saving measures on Hurst but were unsuccessful.

Online records show Munson owns the home, but Riley could not confirm the information.  The woman frequented the location about two times a week, according to Riley.

Sgt. Riley said it appeared the woman was "killed by a reptile," but ISP isn't ruling anything out.

"She may have tripped and fell with the snake and hit her head. We do not know yet," said Riley. "We are not saying the snake did it at this point in time. We are just going by the information we received."

About 140 snakes are kept in the home with 20 belonging to the woman, according to Riley. All but one of the snakes were in its cages.

Riley said there were no venomous snakes in the home.

An autopsy is scheduled for Friday to determine the official cause of death.

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