By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
January 10, 2013 3:47 PM
CASTRO VALLEY, Calif. — Zoo officials say a five-foot-long alligator-like reptile named "Mr. Teeth" that had apparently been protecting a stash of marijuana in a Northern California home has died.
Oakland Zoo officials said today that the 5-foot-long caiman died Wednesday, a day after it was seized by Alameda County Sheriff's during a probation check at a home in Castro Valley.
Zoo officials say that the caiman arrived at the zoo critically ill and non-responsive.
Sgt. J.D. Nelson said Mr. Teeth was likely used to deter marijuana thieves. Suspect Assif Mayar told deputies he got the gator to commemorate rapper Tupac Shakur's 1996 death.
He was arrested and in jail on suspicion of possessing marijuana for sale.
"We get guard dogs all of the time when we search for grow houses and people stashing away all types of dope. But alligators? You just don't see that every day," Nelson told The Associated Press today.
Mayar, who is on probation after pleading guilty last year to disturbing the peace, was arrested and was taken to the county jail on suspicion of possessing marijuana for sale. He could also face citations from the California Fish and Game Commission, including possession of an exotic animal without a permit.
Edited by dudeone, 10 January 2013 - 06:50 PM.