Artist's rendition of sunbathing alligator (Child via Shutterstock/Christin Gasner)
Now that Mayor de Blasio has announced his intentions to overturn the city's ban on ferrets, it's open season on exotic animals in NYC: pet lovers are beseeching the mayor to allow people to legally own everything from bats to hedgehogs to bearded dragons. But one critter that won't be getting any love anytime soon? Alligators—especially alligators who have the temerity to sunbathe in Brooklyn.
Dino, a three-foot-long and three-year-old alligator, was spotted by a neighbor "sunbathing next to a small wading pool" in a Bensonhurst backyard around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Post reports that cops showed up to take the animal away from its owner, 45-year-old Victor Alexandria.
How exactly an alligator "sunbathes" is unclear.
"What's the big deal about a gator?" Alexandria asked. "It's a reptile, and it doesn’t do any bodily harm to anybody as long as you treat it the right way. I give it goldfish about twice a week. The alligator has never bitten me."
Alexandria normally would have received a summons for keeping a wild animal, but there was a warrant for his arrest (for riding his bike on the sidewalk), and he was arrested. He was ultimately charged with disorderly conduct for creating a hazardous condition and a misdemeanor for domesticating the wild animal.
At least the city's population of goldfish will rest a little easier tonight.