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Officials investigate photos of gator forced to drink beer

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina wildlife authorities are investigating after photos circulated online showing beer being poured down a young alligator’s throat.

State Department of Natural Resources spokeswoman Kyndel McConchie says charges are expected on Friday.

It’s unclear what the charges will be, but alligators are federally protected animals. State law makes it illegal to feed an alligator or capture one without a permit.

McConchie says the animal is clearly not being handled properly, as the photos show the gator’s neck being tightly squeezed. One photo shows smoke being blown into the gator’s mouth.

She says the agency was alerted Thursday about the photos circulating on Snapchat and Facebook.

The Island Packet of Hilton Head Island reports (http://bit.ly/2r63R3X ) the gator was in Beaufort County.

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