NEW HARTFORD, Conn. — State environmental police arrested a Connecticut man on charges of possessing a 2-foot-long American alligator and operating an illegal marijuana-growing operation in his home.
Jake Ouellette of New Hartford, was charged with illegal possession of an American Alligator, illegal possession of marijuana (over 4 ounces), illegal possession of marijuana with intent to sell, illegal possession of drug paraphernalia with intent to sell, and illegal manufacturing of marijuana.
Environmental Conservation Police received a complaint in June from a homeowner who was renting out a room that during an inspection, a 2-foot-long alligator was spotted in a small children’s pool in a bedroom.
During the police investigation, two other tenants reported there was an alligator inside the apartment.
When contacted, the tenant denied owning an alligator and refused to return to the residence.
Officers could see in plain view the two small children’s pools with pumps and water circulation equipment, which is consistent with the care and maintenance of an alligator, police said.
Police determined there were multiple active arrest warrants for the tenant in Connecticut and Florida. They applied for and received a search-and-seizure warrant for the home.
The American Alligator was found during the search, police said.
During the search, officers detected the overwhelming odor of marijuana throughout the entire apartment, police said.
Officers found in plain view many marijuana plants, seeds, rolled joints, hash oil, e-cigarettes containing hash oil with USB adapters, packaging materials and equipment, drug paraphernalia and interior growing equipment including seed starter kits, sheets of foil, fertilizer and log books containing transactions and various species of marijuana, police said.
All the narcotics, narcotics contraband, narcotics manufacturing equipment and the American Alligator were seized, police said.
The American Alligator was turned over to a reptile rehabilitative and educational organization.
After police received a warrant from Bantam Court, Ouellette was arrested at his workplace in Wolcott.
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