Deputies: Suspects steal Boa constrictors from Oldsmar reptile shop

Posted at 4:48 PM, May 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-12 02:14:06-04

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office arrested two suspects for allegedly stealing two Boa constrictors from a reptile shop in Oldsmar.

The owner of Herp Reptile Shop says Thursday afternoon, they discovered two of their stolen Aztec Boa constrictors in a cage outside the store. 

Bob Potts owner of the shop says he was out almost $2,000 when he realized two of the snakes were stolen Thursday evening. 

Potts said a woman came in to the store and asked to buy feeding mice, and when the employee went to the back of the store, she slipped out with two baby snakes and two albino tortoises.

The Boas were around 18 inches long each. 

"As a small business owner, when things are tight, every dollar counts," said Potts. 

With the help of store surveillance video, deputies were able to identify the suspects as 19-year-old Jeremy Lawson and 18-year-old Nicole Odierno, of New Port Richey. Lawson and Odierno both turned themselves into deputies.

Deputies recovered the two Aztec boa constrictors and returned them to the Herp Hobby Shop. The two albino tortoises have not been recovered.

Lawson and Odierno are being charged with one count of Grand Theft.