Omaha police made three arrests following an unusual burglary at an exotic pet store.
Nineteen-year-old John McAllister was arrested for burglary, cruelty to animals, and obstructing a peace officer. According to police, McAllister arrived at Bart's Exotic Pet Store with Steven Peck.
Several hours after the burglary, Peck allegedly robbed someone near 36th and Burt Street. Officers found Peck near that scene and arrested him. He was booked for burglary, possession of a short shotgun, possession with intent to deliver marijuana, and possession of a stolen firearm.
Police told WOWT 6 News the investigation also led to 20-year-old Haylie Pecha, who was not involved in the burglary, but was wanted on two felony warrants and one misdemeanor warrant.
Inside Bart's Exotic Pet Store near 84th and I there’s everything from snakes to bearded dragons and turtles. These pets are meant to go to responsible, loving owners, but Monday morning there was a close call, they almost went home with burglars instead.
Don Everson said, “They parked right in front of the front door, took a hammer and smashed out the front door. They ran inside and just started putting snakes and lizards together in pillow cases, just shoving them all in there left and right.”
Some of the snakes are worth thousands of dollars each. Everson believes the suspects intent was to eventually sell them. “I don't think they are actually reptile people, I think they have just been casing the place for a week or two and decided they were going to hit a pet store.”
The business’s alarm went off right away and police were there within minutes. One suspect was caught, the others got away. “One of the guys ran out the back door and he dropped a bag full of snakes outside and had some reptiles in them. We were able to recover all but two snakes right now,” said Everson.
We’re told the two missing are a baby Green Tree Python and a baby Brazilian Rainbow Boa. Everson believes they won’t survive the night.
Also left behind, a gun inside the display of turtles and a big mess. Employees spent the morning trying to get everything back in its place. They’re just glad most of the pets were found.
Police have not released the name of the suspect that has been caught. If you have any information call Crime Stoppers at (402) 444-STOP.