CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) -- Four men arrested on misdemeanor wildlife charges in southeastern Tennessee after a man was fatally bitten by a poisonous snake he was handling have a Monday court hearing in Chattanooga.
They were arrested in an investigation of the Jan. 29 death of Wade Westbrook of East Ridge. Westbrook died in the Chattanooga suburb after he was bitten by a copperhead at his home.
Each is free on bond, charged with violating wildlife laws that govern native and imported snakes. No charges have been filed in Westbrook's death.
One of the four men, 38-year-old snake collector and dealer Chuck Hurd of Gate City, Va., faces multiple charges.
Tennessee law prohibits possessing any native species in a captive environment or transporting any species that poses a public safety issue.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide detailed information.