Tennessee police say viral 'meth-gators' warning was a joke

Drug-addled alligators were a myth all along.

A Tennessee police department on Friday clarified that its viral post from earlier this month asking citizens not to flush their drugs down the toilet for fear of creating “meth-gators” was just a joke.

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“Let us be perfectly clear: the meth gator was a humorous illustration used to highlight the dangers of flushing drugs and other substances down your toilet,” the Loretto Police wrote on Facebook. “Alas, the meth-gator is not real. Let’s say that again: THE METH GATOR IS NOT (at this time) REAL.”

The department’s dry humor caught the attention of news media around the world and even prompted calls from “professionals fearing we actually had a meth influenced gator in our custody,” the department added.

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The “meth-gator” tale hatched after Loretto police wrote about the arrest of a man on drug-related charges and his alleged attempt to flush methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia down the toilet of his home.

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Police wrote they are trying to direct the humorous confusion into a positive ending for the community by creating apparel featuring the “meth-gator” and other department jokes to raise money for local charities that help children affected by drug use.

The department previously advised that citizens getting rid of drugs, including prescription medication, should avoid flushing them and instead call police so they can be disposed of properly.