Ohio police remove alligator living in man's basement for 25 years

Madison Township Police Department

Police were recently called to an Ohio home to remove a large alligator that had been living in the basement for 25 years.

Ohio police see a lot but rarely, if ever, do they encounter an alligator, especially one measuring 5 feet, Fox 28 Columbus reported.

“I’ve been a police officer 17 years, and I’ve never come across an alligator,” Madison Township Patrol Commander Darrel Breneman told the station.

Breneman said police got a call Friday from paramedics saying they had just responded to a home in Groveport and they could not believe what they saw in the basement, the station reported.

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The alligator was living in a tub-like structure with water and a sump pump.

Its owner Dusty Rhoades told WBNS-TV that he got Alli at a reptile flea market.

Madison Township Police Department

“I just got him when he was about a foot long. I've had him ever since," he said.

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Rhoades was in possession of the alligator without an exotic animal permit but avoided being cited after agreeing to voluntarily surrender the alligator to state wildlife officials, Fox 28 reported.

The alligator was checked out and found to be in average health for an alligator living in captivity, according to the station.

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Alli will eventually have a new home at an alligator sanctuary in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Madison Township Police Department

“They kind of grow to the size of the enclosure that they're in, so he's not reached his full potential, and I think it's pretty exciting to know that he's going to an alligator sanctuary in a warmer climate where he can reach his full potential and experience that,” Breneman told the station.