Composite Drawing of Suspect in Deadly Snake Delivery

March 7, 2003

Los Angeles Police Department West Valley Homicide Detectives
Release of Composite Drawing of Suspect in Deadly Snake Delivery
Friday, March 7, 2003 at 11:30 a.m.
West Valley Area Police Station, 19020 Vanowen Street, Reseda

Los Angeles: On February 21, 2003, Los Angeles Police Department West Valley Area officers responded to a "Suspicious Package" radio call. In the package was a deadly snake, delivered to a Winnetka area male, by the United States Postal Service.
According to the victim, a local songwriter, he observed his local mail carrier deliver a sealed package to his residence. When the victim opened the box, he saw that it contained a live snake. Immediately closing the box, the victim called the Los Angeles Police Department. Responding LAPD officers and officers from the Los Angeles City Department of Animal Regulation took possession of the snake. The snake was examined by an expert herpetologist who determined that the snake was a South African Black Spitting Cobra, a snake capable of discharging a poisonous stream of venom several feet. The victim was not injured. He indicated that he had no idea of who would threaten him by mailing a poisonous reptile to his home.
Los Angeles Police Detectives from the West Valley Homicide Unit have traced the package that the snake was mailed in to a mail service business located in the 9000 block of Topanga Canyon Boulevard in Chatsworth. Employees at that location remembered the suspect bringing in the box on Thursday, February 20, purchasing postage, and leaving the box at that location for mailing.
With the assistance of the employees at the business, a composite drawing was prepared and will be released to the public. The suspect is described as a male White, straight blond hair, 6’-1 to 6’2, 180 pounds, 28-32 years-of-age. The suspect was wearing an olive green short-sleeved shirt and green safari pants. He was wearing black stud earrings in both ears and a hoop earring in his left ear. He had tattoos on his left forearm. If identified and arrested, the suspect could be charged with attempted murder, as well as federal violations of the Fish and Game Code.
Anyone with further information is asked to call LAPD West Valley Area Detectives at 818-756-8591. On weekends and during off-hours, call the 24-hour toll free number at the Detective Information Desk, 1-877-LAWFULL, 1-877-529-3855.
This press release was prepared by Officer Renee’ Montoya, Media relations Section, 213-485-3586.