Though DNA testing conducted on the alleged Bigfoot was inconclusive -- with one test suggesting the creature is a possum -- and printed pictures of the creature are out of focus, Georgia residents Matthew Whitton, a police officer on administrative leave since he was shot in the hand, and Rick Dyer, a former correctional officer, spoke at length about the June day they hiked into the woods and stumbled upon the creature.
Whitton and Dyer said they found Bigfoot dead near a stream after they had hiked into secluded woods for a camping trip.
"It was a pretty fresh body," said Whitton, who added that he and those who have seen the body, about eight or 10 people, have not officially determined how the creature died.
Whitton said he waited by the body for about nine hours while Dyer hiked out of the woods and retrieved his tow truck and the two then moved the body out of the area and into a freezer, where the supposed bipedal, apelike creature has remained for about 60 days.
When asked why neither man contacted local authorities or wild animal experts after their unlikely find, Whitton said, "I didn't see any need to call."
He later likened the incident to finding the world's largest diamond, in which case he said knowing exactly what to do would be difficult.
"We didn't know who to call and who to trust," Whitton said.
Whitton, who claims he and Dyer spotted three other Bigfoot creatures walking about 50 feet from them, also stressed his concern for the species and their habitat.
"They were aware of us," he said. "They didn't try to attack us or anything."
This alleged breakthrough was made public a few weeks ago, when Dyer and Whitton announced their finding on a radio show and said they would only let career Bigfoot tracker Tom Biscardi, of the Menlo Park-based Searching for Bigfoot, Inc., see the animal.
Biscardi, who spoke today and jumped back to the podium to answer several questions posed to Whitton and Dyer, said simply, "They do have the body."
He added that when he was first shown the Bigfoot, "It was a euphoric experience for me. I was in shock. For about four hours."
Biscardi said the male creature found by Dyer and Whitton is one of between 3,500 and 7,000 Bigfoot animals in North America.
The Bigfoot body in the freezer weighs more than 500 pounds, stands seven feet seven inches tall and is covered in reddish hair, according to the men. Its feet are 16-and-three-quarters inches long, they said.
Biscardi said DNA testing conducted by Curt Nelson of the University of Minnesota came back with one inconclusive test, one test that suggests the creature is human, and a third that suggests the creature is a possum.
The last result came about because the DNA sample was taken from Bigfoot's intestines, he claimed.
Various other scientists from unspecified institutions will participate in further research, including an autopsy Biscardi said is expected within a week or two.
As for additional trips into the woods to capture a living Bigfoot, all three men said they plan on heading back but not until the Bigfoot in custody has been thoroughly examined.