OXFORD — The death of a Battle Ground woman found Oct. 30 inside an Oxford home filled with reptiles has been ruled as asphyxiation due to strangulation by a snake.
The snake was a reticulated python native to south and southeast Asia. Investigators found it wrapped around the woman’s neck. She has been identified as Laura Hurst, 36, of Battle Ground.
Indiana State Police state that first responders were called out to 609 N. Dan Patch Drive in Oxford for a 911 call about an unresponsive female.
Medics arrived and attempted life-saving measures on Hurst but were unsuccessful.
Of the 140 snakes at the location, approximately 20 belonged to Hurst. Police claim that Hurst frequents the location approximately two times a week.
An autopsy was performed Nov. 1 on Hurst at the Tippecanoe County Morgue.
The results are pending a final toxicology report that should be available in four to six weeks.
The case is ongoing and the state police say no further information will be released at this time.
Reticulated pythons, according to wildlifelearningcenter.org, can weigh up to 350 pounds and regularly grow to between 16-25 feet.