Alligator confiscated from Iowa teen trying to sell it online - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Alligator confiscated from Iowa teen trying to sell it online

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SIOUX CITY (KTIV) -

An alligator is now in temporary care at the Sioux City Animal Adoption and Rescue Center after investigators confiscated the reptile from a Sioux City teenager attempting to sell the animal online.

After multiple reports and tips, it took investigators about 20 minutes to find the person who was selling the alligator. "He was very compliant," said Cindy Rarrat, owner of the Sioux City Animal Adoption and Rescue Center. The teen is 16 years old, but workers with the animal rescue will not release his name because he is a minor. "He was a very nice person that had no knowledge of knowing that he couldn't keep this animal in Sioux City," she added.

Prior to taking the American Alligator, the teen posted an online ad to Facebook. The teen put an asking price of $400 for who he called 'Allie' which would come with a 75 gallon aquarium, heat lamps and water heater. Attached to the ad was a picture of the alligator with a cigarette hanging out of it's mouth. He also painted the nails pink on the gators feet.

Cute or not, Rarrat says this is still a dangerous animal that could bite you or injure other people. She says this is the third alligator in three years they have confiscated. Not only does she say Iowa is not the place for the reptile, but many don't do enough research on the animals. "A lot of people who get this animal do not have a clue how to take care of it," said Rarrat.

The teen bought the gator online at backwaterreptiles.com. The website says you must be 18, or older, to order. But, there's a disclaimer that says the site isn't responsible if someone misrepresents their age. "It's very sad in this situation because the guy lost his animal that he really cared about," said Rarrat. She added that you can practically buy any animal you want online these days.

Alligators are among a few reptiles not allowed in Sioux City limits. While an alligator may seem bizarre, it's not the only unique animal animal control has taken. "Over the years we've gotten two cougars [and] we've gotten two bears," said Rarrat.

Workers with the animal rescue say you should check with the city to see what animals you can and cannot have so they don't have to take it away. "He should have researched before he got it," said Rarrat.

The teen could have been charged up to $750 as a first-time offense. In this case, investigators did not charge him with anything due to his cooperation. The alligator itself will head to Southeast Community College in Lincoln, Nebraska, officials say hopefully sometime within the week. It will be part of a lab for research and education.

Written by Sam Curtiss, Multimedia Journalist

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