WASHINGTON - When Anne Arundel police raided a Jessup home Friday on suspicion of drugs, officers did not expect they'd come upon a 3-foot American alligator.
The reptile was discovered inside 32-year-old Michael Golden's house, but it's not known whether it was in a cage. One thing is for sure.
"It's extremely uncommon," says Justin Mulcahy with Anne Arundel County police.
"Talking to Animal Control, they've had some cases in the past. Bottom-line, it's illegal to have an exotic pet," he says.
The bust by the Tactical Narcotics Team was the result of an investigation into drug trafficking taking place at Golden's home on Gleneagle Drive in Jessup, Md. The officers seized 159 grams of marijuana, paraphernalia, $792 in cash and other substances now being analyzed by the county's crime lab.
It's not clear if the alligator was guarding anything or what its purpose was, but Mulcahy says officers immediately called Animal Control who transported the alligator, who they say was in good health.
Golden is charged with possession with intent to distribute and possession of marijuana. Evidence at the home confirms Golden is an associate of the Dead Man Inc. gang, police say.
The reptile has been moved to another facility for exotic animals, police say, and the investigation into Golden continues.
Follow WTOP on Twitter.
(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)
WTOP takes an all-electric motorcycle for a test drive. (Video)
This fox plays like a cat when he gets his paws on a golf ball. (Video)
A tornado survivor finds an answer to prayer in the rubble. (Video)
Octogenarians are racing to become the oldest to climb Everest.