Georgia State Wildlife Officers Searching For 14 Pythons After Pet Snakes Escape | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Georgia State Wildlife Officers Searching For 14 Pythons After Pet Snakes Escape

The owner told authorities the snakes were in secure cages, and she suspects someone set them free deliberately

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    A Georgia woman is searching for 14 pet pythons after an acquaintance intentionally released the snakes into a South Carolina forest. (Published Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016)

    In a real life version of the children's reader "Snakes Alive!", state wildlife officers are searching for 14 pythons in an east Georgia subdivision after a woman reported that someone let the pet snakes loose.

    Jacqueline Heim told authorities the snakes were in secure cages. She suspects someone set them free deliberately this week.

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    Heim tells WRDW-TV the ball pythons are not harmful. Ball pythons, sometimes known as royal pythons, are so named because their key defense against predators is to roll up in a ball.

    Priscilla Crisler of Augusta Animal Services says the snakes "typically are very docile."

    But neighbors like Shekelia Wilcher are on edge. Wilcher tells WJBF-TV that young children in the neighborhood wait for their school bus and "one might just crawl up on them."

    The neighborhood is in Hephzibah, about 15 miles south of Augusta.

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    Police said Frank Wetzel, 61, was pulled over after blowing through a stop sign. Police said he started fidgeting with something next to him, making the officer suspicious. He was allegedly later found with a machete and handgun.

    (Published Monday, April 24, 2017)