SOUTH COATESVILLE, Pa. (WPVI) -- Authorities in Chester County have arrested three people on drug charges and recovered an alligator during a search last week.
On Feb. 8, police in Chester County say they recovered heroin, crack cocaine, suspected fentanyl, cash, drug packing materials and a three-foot-long alligator living in the kitchen of the home in South Coatesville.
Irvin "Gotti" Hawkins, 31, Aki Gathright, 35, and Tyrone Jackson, 40, are being charged with drug trafficking and other related offenses.
"Drug dealers will do just about anything to project an image of danger in order to protect their drugs and cash. Some drug dealers use pit bulls or snakes. These drug traffickers kept an alligator in the house. But at the end of the day, the police seized their drugs and money, and the alligator is headed to the zoo," said Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan.
The alligator was sent to the Brandywine Zoo. The three men are now lodged in the Chester County Prison.
"We will provide care for the alligator and ensure it is healthy during its stay with the zoo," said Brint Spencer, the Director of DNREC's Brandywine Zoo, which is managed by DNREC's Division of Parks & Recreation. "The Brandywine Zoo is glad we could be of assistance to Chester County law enforcement in placing the alligator in a healthy environment."