Pet Python Kills Toddler in Her Crib

Family Matters on 07.12.11


Photo: Wikipedia Commons 

A Florida mother and her boyfriend face charges of manslaughter, third-degree murder, and child neglect in the death of two-year-old Shaianna Hare, who was strangled in her crib by the couple's pet python, reports MSNBC.

The toddler's mother, Jaren Hare, and Hare's boyfriend, Charles Darnell, said that the python had escaped from its makeshift enclosure ten times before Darnell found it "wrapped around Shaianna's head and body." Each time it escaped, the couple had returned it to a laundry bag inside a tank covered by a safety-pinned quilt -- violating a Florida law that pet snakes must be kept in a locked enclosure.

Darnell found the reptile -- a 12-foot long albino Burmese python that weighs about 50 pounds, and which neither Hare nor Darnell had a permit to keep -- in the crib with the two-year-old and says he stabbed it in an attempt to free the girl, but she was already dead. Though the snake was "due for its monthly feeding," says MSNBC, Darnell "didn't think the animal wanted to eat the little girl."

The couple also owns a red-tailed boa constrictor; the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission removed both snakes from the home.

More from MSNBC.



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Tags: Pet Safety