Cop rescues pet store owner from python

April 20, 2008 at 6:35 AM

EUGENE, Ore., April 20 (UPI) -- An Oregon police officer and firefighters saved a pet store owner from a 12-foot Burmese python, using a screw driver to open the snake's jaws.

Sgt. Ryan Nelson told the Eugene (Ore.) Register-Guard his first thought when he reached the store Thursday was to cut off the python's head. But Teresa Rossiter, who owns Best Friends with her husband, begged him not to, even though the snake was biting her ring finger and coiled around her body.

While Rossiter lay on the floor, the snake slowly tightening its grip, Nelson put on gloves and tried getting the mouth open. A firefighter poured cold water on its head, which did not work either.

Finally, a firefighter used the screw driver while Nelson pulled Rossiter to safety. He then wrangled the angry snake into its cage.

Rossiter said she opened the cage to show off the python and forgot she had been handling mice.

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