Cobra found dead in North Austin; snake may have killed man Tuesday

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FRIDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: Austin police say death investigated as possible suicide, according to report.

8:30 a.m. update: A Travis County medical examiner will analyze a venomous cobra found dead in North Austin on Friday to confirm whether it may be linked to the death of 18-year-old Grant Thompson, officials said.

The monocled cobra, which is nearly 4-feet long, was found dead early Friday morning on the service road of Interstate 35 near Parmer Lane and just feet away from the Lowe’s Home Improvement store where Thompson was found unresponsive Tuesday night.

An employee of CarMax, a car dealer next to the Lowe’s store, told police he had kept a watch for the snake and called 311 when he spotted it on the service road, officials said.

Mark Sloat, animal protection supervisor at Austin Animal Center, said the snake appears to have been run over but his head was intact.

“Now the medical examiner will look at the snake to see if it matches the puncture wounds on Thompson’s body,” Sloat said.

7:10 a.m. update: Austin Animal Protection officials on Friday called off a scheduled search for a cobra linked to the death of an 18-year-old Temple man on Tuesday.

The snake was found dead early Friday morning on the access road near the 13000 block of of North Interstate 35 near Parmer Lane. Animal Protection officials said they retrieved the snake at about 3:30 a.m.

On Tuesday, police had found Grant Thompson found unresponsive in the parking lot of the nearby Lowe’s Home Improvement Store and noted puncture wounds on his wrist. He was later pronounced dead at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center.

Although several animals were found in his vehicle, investigators determined that a venomous monocled cobra was missing from Thompson’s home.

Earlier: A missing monocled cobra believed to be connected to the death of a Temple man was found early Friday morning, police said.

The venomous snake was found dead around 2:20 a.m. near the intersection of Interstate 35 and Parmer Lane, police said.

Authorities had been searching for the cobra after 18-year-old Grant Thompson was found unresponsive and in cardiac arrest Tuesday night in his car in the Lowe’s Home Improvement parking lot in the 13000 block of Interstate 35 in North Austin.

Thompson was taken to St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center where he was pronounced dead on arrival, according to Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services.

He had puncture wounds on his wrist, EMS said.

A group of eight to 10 animal control officers and animal experts were planning to comb through the parking lot at 8 a.m. Friday morning in hopes to find the missing cobra, officials said.