Pet shop thief hid snake down pants
The bizarre moment a thief took a python out of its pet store cage and stuffed it down his pants has been caught on camera.
The snake was taken from a shop in Rockwood in the American state of Michigan on March 20.
Now, a 52-second video taken by CCTV cameras has been released, in which a man is seen remove the snake from its glass case and hiding it in his trousers.
As he does so, he's partially hidden from view by a bird cage.
With the python tucked away, the man continues to walk around the store for another 30 seconds before walking out of the shot.
The man did apparently buy a $6 rat and was in the store asking about snakes and rodents, according to a report in The News Tribune.
Employees at the I Love My Pets store "are in disbelief," one worker, Emily Scheiwe, said.
She shared the surveillance footage on Facebook and her post has been flooded with comments and been shared almost 500 times.
"Someone stole our beautiful ball python who had just been adopted and was going home the same day he was stolen," she shared on social media.
Most commenters were outraged and could not believe the thief didn't notice he was directly in front of the camera.
"Honestly! I mean your cameras system sits right by your register. How does he not know he's being watched?" commented one social media user.
Before the CCTV footage from March 20 was reviewed, it's believed employees initially thought the python - affectionately named Pasta - had gotten out of its cage.
"My boyfriend and I went in there around 7 that day and one of the employees thought the snake got out and was looking for it. That's f---ked up," a commenter confirmed.
Others were quick to question his motives for taking the snake in the first place.
"You can get a normal ball python like this for under $100. There are much more expensive types of ball pythons that will run you a couple of thousands of dollars. I wonder what this guy's intentions are for the snake since they're not worth too much," explained Emily Scheiwe, the employee who posted the footage.
"I wish he would've bit him, but he's a pretty tame snake," she replied to one commenter. "Would've been a much better video if he was on the ground in agony. Instant karma."
Police have appealed to the public for help identifying the man in the video.