A Houston police officer shot and killed an alligator after finding the remains of a missing woman in its mouth on Tuesday.

Officers were searching for the woman, believed to be in her 60s, when they discovered the alligator in Horsepen Bayou outside Houston.

An officer fatally shot the alligator “to prevent it from doing more damage to the remains,” according to Houston police.

Police recovered the woman’s remains and are awaiting autopsy results to determine the cause of death.

It is unclear if the alligator killed the woman or if it found her already deceased.

The incident is under investigation, and the woman’s identity is pending verification by the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences.