MOLINE -- A reptile dealer from Wisconsin has taken possession of 25 ball pythons found in a Moline basement Tuesday by narcotics agents.
Jim Stelpflug, owner of SW Reptiles in Dickeyville, Wis., removed the snakes from the home at 2027 18th St. B., Wednesday afternoon. He said he saw a message posted on Facebook by the owner of the snakes stating that the snakes needed a home or would be euthanized.
Mr. Stelpflug said the snakes appeared healthy, and the average size was about a foot long. "Everything looked good."
According to Kevin Winslow, director of the Quad City Metropolitan Enforcement Group, narcotics agents executed a search warrant at the residence about 2 p.m. Tuesday. In the process of securing the home, they found the snakes in Rubbermaid containers on shelves in a basement bedroom.
According to Moline city code, constrictor snakes are included under "dangerous animals," which are prohibited in the city.
Mr. Stelpflug said ball pythons can sell for $25 to $10,000. After removing the reptiles from the home Wednesday, he put an approximate value of $200 on each snake he removed.
During the search, agents seized evidence related to an ongoing narcotics investigation, and Mr. Winslow said arrests are imminent.
Today is Tuesday, March 11, the 70th day of 2014. There are 295 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: Much damage is being done by hogs that are running at large about town. The marshal will take them up and sell them if their owners do not contain them. 1889 -- 125 years ago: George Newberry, Daniel Strecker, Al Webb and James Dixon returned from a voyage down the Mississippi River as far as Memphis, Tenn., on a flat. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Augustana College was put out of the running for the state collegiate basketball title when defeated by Millikin. The Viking lineup included Sten, Samuelson and Swanbeck, forwards, and Holtgren, Johnson and Berg, guards. 1939 -- 75 years ago: The coronation of Pope Pius XII and preliminary ceremonies were broadcast by WHBF on the Mutual Radio Network. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Reactivation of a portion of the J.I. Case Co, plant in Rock Island as a supplier for component parts for the firm's manufacturing centers at Racine, Wis., or Burlington, Iowa, is under consideration. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Downtown Moline business owners will have a chance to help shape the city's future through a survey being done by the Bi-State Metropolitan Planning Commission.