Originally published Wednesday, October 10, 2018 at 04:48p.m.


The 4-foot alligator was taken to the Wildlife Discovery Center in nearby Lake Forest. (Sam Cunningham/City of Waukegan via AP)

WAUKEGAN, Ill. — Authorities don’t know who dumped a 4-foot-long reptile into Lake Michigan, but they now know what kind it is.

After initially believing the animal spotted Monday swimming near Waukegan, Illinois, by a startled kayaker was a caiman, officials now say it is actually an alligator.

Either way, it had no business paddling around the suburban Chicago shoreline. Waukegan spokesman David Motley said Tuesday that animal control officers are trying to determine who abandoned the creature, which was found with its mouth kept shut by rubber bands.