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Pennsylvania cop fatally shot 15-foot snake that was strangling owner, police say

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Pennsylvania police shot dead a 4.5-meter snake on Wednesday as it strangled a man in his suburban Allentown home.

Emergency services responded Wednesday afternoon to a call about a 28-year-old man who went into cardiac arrest with a tube wrapped tightly around his throat. When police arrived at the home in Fogelsville, they found the man, identified by police only as the pet snake owner, on the floor unresponsive, Lieutenant Peter Nickischer, of the Upper Macungie Township, told The Washington. Post.

The “very large, very fat” snake had its belly wrapped around its neck — and its eyes were on the officers, he said.

Nickischer said one of the officers fired a single shot and hit the snake in the head. The reptile then let go of its grip and slid away so officers could pull the owner to safety, he said.

Nickischer said paramedics gave “life-saving measures” to the man before taking him to a hospital for treatment. He remained in hospital on Thursday, although his condition was unknown, Nickischer added.

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Police have not said what type of snake it was, and it is still unclear why it turned against its owner. But it’s not the first time this has happened.

In 2015, a Florida teen was bitten on the lip by a water moccasin he kept as a pet, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Two years later, an Ohio woman called 911 and reported that a boa constrictor was wrapped around her waist, holding her nose. As The Post previously reported, the snake was not venomous and did not strangle her, but she told the dispatcher there was “blood everywhere.”

And last year, a Florida woman and her boyfriend were released from prison 12 years after their malnourished pet Burmese python wrapped its six-foot body around the woman’s 2-year-old daughter and killed her, according to ClickOrlando. Both had been convicted of aggravated manslaughter and child neglect, the outlet reported.

After the recent snake attack in Pennsylvania, Nickischer praised the officers for saving a man’s life.

He said the officers at the time did not know where the snake was or how many were in the house, but they acted without hesitation. “They went in, they saw an opportunity to save a man, and as far as I’m concerned they showed a lot of courage,” he said in a telephone interview with The Post on Thursday.

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