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Loose alligator captured in New York town

By
Ben Hooper
Police in New York state captured an alligator spotted by visitors to a local park. File Photo
Police in New York state captured an alligator spotted by visitors to a local park. File Photo

Oct. 30 (UPI) -- Police in a New York state town performed an unusual capture when residents called to report a startling discovery: an alligator in a local park.

Herb Maynard said he was walking with his family Monday at Waryas Park in Poughkeepsie when they spotted the 2-1/2-foot alligator in a pile of leaves.

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"Knowing these creatures are cold-blooded animals, I considered it probably would be very sluggish in its movements," Maynard told the Poughkeepsie Journal. "Rather than to pick it up myself and cause alarm with passersby, I quietly asked my daughter to take some photos and call 911 to have this poor creature taken to a shelter."

Poughkeepsie Police Officer Robert Haberski said he was able to safely capture the alligator by approaching it from behind and taping its mouth shut with the help of another officer.

"I was a little surprised. Not sure what to expect," Haberski said. "Honestly, I didn't believe we were going to find a real live alligator. But sure enough when I got there, there were a couple of people pointing and as I walked up, there was an alligator."

Police consulted with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the alligator was given a new temporary home at the Two by Two Zoo in Pleasant Valley.

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"It's a busy area of town at that time of day," Poughkeepsie Fire Chief Mark Johnson told the New York Post. "We had four overdoses and an alligator loose."

The origins of the alligator remain unknown.

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