A successful drug raid in South Coatesville, Pennsylvania earlier this month turned up cash, heroin, crack, and what police suspect is fentanyl. These are the things cops expect to find in a drug raid.
On the list of things they don’t expect to find is probably ‘American Alligator’ and not because this was in Pennsylvania and not somewhere throughout the South where alligators are native. You just never expect to see an alligator in someone’s home, that’s not normal.
According to police, the 3-foot alligator was named ‘El Chompo’ and the dealers allegedly used the animal to protect their drugs and money. They claim it’s not uncommon for dealers to use snakes or dogs to protect the goods but it’s pretty damn rare to find an alligator.
Jared Gilmour of the Miami Herald reports:
“Some drug dealers use pit bulls or snakes,” Hogan said in a news release. “These drug traffickers kept an alligator in the house.”
“Quite frankly, as far as we can tell with these drug dealers, the alligator may have been the brains of the operation,” Hogan said, according to WGAL.
Mexican drug lord El Chapo was recently sentenced to life behind bars at a notoriously high-security federal prison in the remote Colorado Rockies. But the drug-guarding alligator namesake can expect better treatment in captivity, authorities said: El Chompo was sent to the Brandywine Zoo in Wilmington, Delaware.
“The zoo will house the alligator as an educational animal this summer, after which time it will be taken to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park … in Florida from which the Brandywine Zoo borrows alligators,” prosecutors said. (via)
Side note: if you ever have the chance to go to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park, you should definitely go. It’s a really cool zoo on the East Coast of Florida that’s dedicated to alligators and you’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere in the world with more gators than there.
The three drug dealers were all taken into custody where they now face charges of drug trafficking. For more on this story, you can click here to visit the Miami Herald.