PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - Grocery baskets and cars were not the only things found outside of the Paragould Walmart, 2802 West Kingshighway, after someone left possibly 40 snakes in the parking lot.
According to Detective Jack Hailey with the Paragould Police Department, they received the call about the snakes Sunday night.
"At first, they were saying the snakes were copperheads and water moccasins," said Hailey. "But, after we got one of our officers who is apparently some sort of snake whisperer, we learned that they were non-venomous garden snakes."
Hailey said it appeared that someone had captured the snakes and just dumped them in a pile.
"They were either herding the snakes when they were frog gigging or something," said Hailey. "Either way, they were collecting them for this reason and I don't think that was the best thing to do at all. Especially, those out there with a phobia."
Hailey said though no one was reported injured in the incident, it could have been a different story.
Poisonous or not, it is dangerous when you put snakes in a busy area," said Hailey. "It could cause a panic with people trying to get away.
According to an incident report, no reportable criminal offenses are going to happen, but Hailey said if someone does get caught committing a 'bad joke' such as this, charges could definitely vary.
"At the minimum, you could look at disorderly conduct of causing alarm to a public place, but if you look at the bigger picture, is someone was trying to get away from them and got hurt in any sort of way, those charges could easily increase," said Hailey. "Your actions resulted in someone getting hurt and we don't want that at all."
Hailey said he hopes this is the last time they have to deal with something like this.
"If you like to play with snakes, keep them in their natural habitats where they belong," said Hailey. " it is not anything funny. It is not cute. It is going to get somebody hurt and could potentially get someone seriously hurt."
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