Iguanas, Alligators, More Found in South Philly Home

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A Philadelphia man is arrested in an alleged case of animal hoarding. (Published Wednesday, Jul 27, 2011)

    "Extremely bizarre" is what a Pennsylvania SPCA official called an alleged case of animal hoarding of living and dead exotic and domestic animals in the home of a South Philly man who allegedly claimed to be in CIA.

    “This is an extremely bizarre case,” PSPCA spokesman George Bengal said. “This is a hoarder situation but I think that the individual who lives in here has every kind of species known to man.”

    "Bizarre" Case of Animal Hoarding In South Philly

    [PHI]"Bizarre" Case of Animal Hoarding In South Philly
    A man who claimed he was in the CIA was arrested Tuesday night after SPCA officers removed dozens of dead and live animals from his home, including a 4-foot alligator. (Published Tuesday, Jul 26, 2011)

    Officers uncovered some living dogs, eight dead dogs, two dead iguanas, a 4-foot alligator that later died, at least three living turtles, frogs, cats, rats, roosters and even tarantulas from a home on the 900 block of Shunk Street, according to PSPCA.

    Some of the animals were even mummified, officials said.

    They only found the dead gator two hours after entering the home, Bengal said. They had to clear junk to even get to the animal.

    The smell coming from the home was unbearable, according to witnesses.

    It wasn't clear how long the dead animals were in the home.

    The exact number of animals found in the home wasn’t immediately made known.

    Neighbors say they complained for years about the smell coming from the home.

    This wasn't the first time animal officers were at the home but previous attempts to enter the home were unsuccessful -- this time they had a warrant, Bengal said.

    Philadelphia Police picked up the suspect, who allegedly claimed to be in the CIA, earlier in the day as he was sitting naked outside his house, Bengal said.

    After cops saw a dead iguana inside the home, animal officers were called in, Bengal said.

    The owner was taken to hospital for undisclosed reasons.

    He will be charged with animal cruelty, the SPCA said.

    John Pilotti Jr., the alleged hoarder's son, is also being charged, but for a different crime. Pilotti Jr. was arrested Tuesday night for attacking a Fox 29 reporter and his cameraman live on TV during their 10 p.m. broadcast.


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