In Wisconsin, a man faces stalking charges for sending his ex-girlfriend a live ball python.
The defendant, Eric Burrows, had made multiple threats to his ex-girlfriend prior to sending the live snake to her doorstep, according to the Sheboygan County District Attorney’s Office. The threats included letters to both her apartment complex and employer’s address, voicemails, and text messages to her and her ex-husband. Burrows also reportedly threatened to post nude photos of the victim online.
Authorities x-rayed the package after the woman received it on Aug. 18 to find the python as well as a note that read, “Surprise you lying [expletive]. Enjoy, this is who you are. Now do you care.”
At first, the defendant denied writing threatening letters, but later said he might know something about the python delivery after being made aware of surveillance footage that shows him delivering the package.
Further investigation, including a search of Burrows’ cell phone, found that the defendant had attempted to access the woman’s Facebook account, searched the her apartment complex, as well as phrases such as, “how do you know if you are stalking someone,” “warning signs of stalking behavior,” as well as similar searches.
Surprisingly, some people don’t know that certain activities can land them in jail. Burrows’ search inquiries lead one to believe that he was unsure if what he was doing constituted as stalking behaviors.
In the U.S. alone, 68 million people have existing criminal records. Since ignorance of the law is very rarely a viable defense, many of the convicted persons who have not expunged their records committed their crimes unknowingly.
Burrows will report to court on Sept. 21 for a preliminary hearing. He is currently being held on a $2,500 cash bond.