We’ve all messed up after a few drinks, but for most of us that normally involves drunk-dialingour ex or going into the wrong toilet at the bar.
Jennifer Lampe, 28, has been given a suspended 4 month jail sentence for killing her two snakes while drunk, and causing them unnecessary suffering.
She was discovered by police covered in blood, with the lifeless body of her boa constrictor wrapped around her neck, and the heads of both reptiles stashed in her pockets covered in vomit, after she had attempted to swallow them but thrown them up.
She told the RSPCA she ‘wanted to keep them’, and magistrates accused her of committing an ‘unpleasant, not to say bizarre’ act of animal cruelty.
The court was also told about how, a few weeks before the snake decapitations, she threw her pet hamster into a fish tank and watched it drown because it wasmaking too much noise in the night.
RSPCA prosecutor Roger Price told court she then ‘put the dead hamster in a chest freezer’ but its contents were later emptied.
Mr Price said Lampe killed the two-metre boa constrictor and a smaller ball python in April of this year because she was worried she mightbecome homeless and therefore wouldn’t be able to look after the pair.
She was living with her sister, but after falling out with her sister’s boyfriend she became agitated and took a pair of scissors and knife up to her room where she was keeping the snakes. Her sister found her hysterical with the snake draped around her neck and called the police.
A vet who examined the animals found that the snakes’ ‘suffering was prolonged and painful’ and saidthat reptiles’ heads ‘can remain operable up to an hour after decapitation’, meaning they likely were fullyaware of Lampe as she swallowed them.
Sarah Cooper, representing Lampe, described heras a vulnerable ‘loner’ who had ‘some mental health problems’, a drink problem and was currently taking anti-depressants.
‘It is a bizarre set of circumstances, needless to say, the animals have suffered, they shouldn’t have, she knows that.’
If you have any concerns about the welfare of an animal, contact the RSPCAor your nationalanimal welfare organisations.
Lead image: RSPCA