TAMPA — A man bitten by his pet viper now faces charges for having the animal in the first place. Jamie DePriest drove himself to St. Joseph's Hospital on Tuesday after his 18-inch-long pet Gaboon viper bit his left index finger, according to Bay News 9. He was in fair condition late Friday night.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers found the snake in its aquarium with no lid at DePriest's W Anderson Avenue home. He told the authorities he bought the snake in New York.
There second-degree misdemeanor charges against DePriest include failing to cage the snake and keeping it without a permit, according to Bay News 9. The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is also investigating because two children lived in the home with DePriest and the snake.