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Pet python strangles Ohio man

CAMP DENNISON, Ohio, Dec. 16 (UPI) -- An Ohio man was killed Saturday when his 14-foot pet python coiled itself around his neck and strangled him.

Ted Drees of Camp Dennison had owned the snake for a long time, WCPO-TV in Cincinnati reported.

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"He had this one out all the time. He reached in and the snake grabbed him around the neck, and couldn't get the snake off," his mother, Elaine Drees, told the television station.

Getting the snake to let go its hold took the combined strength of three Hamilton County sheriff's officers. The county Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals took custody of the python.

Experts say large constrictors like pythons should not be kept as pets or only kept by people willing to take necessary precautions. These include not handling snakes over 8 feet single-handed.

Owners must also be careful not to get the scent of anything the snake might consider prey on them.

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