More than a dozen Monitor lizards, some more than six feet long, were removed from an apartment following a probation arrest near Stanton.
A total of 17 dangerous reptiles were taken from the home in the 5500 block of Heritage Court Drive near Stanton. New Castle County Police say the animals were first discovered by the Delaware Probation and Parole Absconder Team as they were arresting a suspect wanted on multiple court warrants and violation of probation.
Inside the apartment, team members noticed multiple homemade cages containing the lizards. There were so many exotic animals in the home that was in deplorable condition, according to police, that officers called for special help.
The Kent County SPCA and representatives of the Brandywine Zoo were among groups called to help handle the animals. Zoo officials described some of the 16 lizards as deadly and extremely dangerous, especially around the three-year-old child who was in the home at the time of the arrests. The child was removed from the home and has been placed with a family member.
The lizards were taken by SPCA workers to a reptile rescue center in New Jersey.
In addition to the animals, police also found 115 grams of what looked to be crack cocaine and over 99 grams of suspected marijuana, as well as several prescription drugs and two loaded hand guns.
The residents of the home, 25-year-old Jennifer Chadwick, 32-year-old Antonio Graves and 28-year-old Jerimiah Feaster are all facing drug and firearms charges, in addition to endangering the welfare of a child.