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Why do people keep an 8 foot python as a pet?

A pet Burmese python measuring more than 8 feet long broke out of a terrarium and strangled a 2-year-old girl in her bedroom Wednesday at a central Florida home, authorities said. Shaiunna Hare was already dead when paramedics arrived at about 10 a.m., Lt. Bobby Caruthers of the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office said.

Charles Jason Darnell, the snake’s owner and the boyfriend of Shaiunna’s mother, discovered the snake missing from its terrarium and went to the girl’s room, where he found it on the girl and bite marks on her head, Caruthers said. Darnell, 32, stabbed the snake until he was able to pry the child away.

Authorities removed the snake from the home Wednesday afternoon after obtaining a search warrant. Once outside the small, tan home, bordered by cow pastures, the snake was placed in a bag then inside a dog crate. The snake was still alive.

Burmese pythons are not native to Florida, but they easily survive in the state and can reach a length of 26 feet and weigh more than 200 pounds.

The Humane Society of the United States said including Wednesday’s death, at least 12 people have been killed in the U.S. by pet pythons since 1980, including five children.

So far no charges have been filed.




  1. Nimby says:

    # 28 thecommodore said, “…maybe pythons make good eating? Anybody know?”

    Uhm. Not python but I’ve eaten boa. It was pretty good. Yes. Sorta like chicken.

    # 18 Dallas said, “…I can sort of accept a parrot and that’s about it.”

    Had a lovely family living next to me once. Four kids, two parrots. One parrot pecked out the eye of a child. ALL animals CAN be dangerous. Especially to infants.

    Let’s BAN ALL animals in the home! Oh, wait … that might include my current girlfriend…

  2. Thomas says:

    #31
    Let’s not forget the numerous tales of people losing their fingers to mccaws.

  3. sargasso says:

    #31. and other appendages. But, yes, unbearably sad news. What could they all be going through at this time?

  4. Jakethesnake says:

    #26
    Then since there is such a problem with these snakes..The boot business will be a viable trade I presume in the future

  5. deowll says:

    You can make a pet of anything. The issue with snakes is they don’t bond with the owner. At best they become habituated to you. They are eating machines and at this size they can kill you and young children are the same size as their normal food.

    That being the case it is neither reasonable nor prudent to keep a large one as a pet and if you add a small child into the picture you add criminal negligence to the picture.

    A gopher snake or something like that would have been different.

    Next point, these things aren’t that common but they still make decent numbers on attacking owners and others.

    A small snake seems like a reasonable pet as long as you get something that will stay small enough to be safe.

    The my dog doesn’t bite is a lie also but you get the problems you ask for.

    I’m feeding one cat and that’s it. The main risk with it seems to be stepping on or tripping over it.

    The mother gets a Darwin award.

  6. fiene2005 says:

    My condolences to the family. Yes, a tragedy, but we must put this in the proper perspective. It was an accident, and it is very uncommon when you compare how many family dogs have killed, or disfigured children. Any pet can pose a danger to an infant.

    Stop judging that family.

  7. tim says:

    we must ban the breeding, importation and sale of all non-native species. what is taking our moron leaders soo long to deal with this problem!