Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

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Normal Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Guest on Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:20 pm

Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child


Print By MIKE SCHNEIDER, Associated Press Writer Mike Schneider, Associated Press Writer – 20 mins ago
OXFORD, Fla. – A 12-foot pet Burmese python broke out of an aquarium and strangled a 2-year-old girl in her bedroom Wednesday at a central Florida home, authorities said.

Shaunia Hare was already dead when paramedics arrived at about 10 a.m., Lt. Bobby Caruthers of the Sumter County Sheriff's Office said.

Charles Jason Darnell, the snake's owner and the boyfriend of Shaunia's mother, discovered the snake missing from its aquarium and went to the girl's room, where he found it on the girl and bite marks on her head, Caruthers said. Darnell, 32, stabbed the snake until he was able to pry the child away.

Authorities remained outside the small, tan home, bordered by cow pastures Wednesday afternoon, awaiting a search warrant to remove the snake from the home. It was unclear if it was still alive.



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Post by mommyof3kids on Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:49 pm

That is it... my sons pet snake (that my husband brought home from the pet store one day) is OUT OF THE HOUSE starting tonight... I don't even care if my son crys, I have been looking for an excuse to get rid of him and now I have one... AHHHHHH
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Post by adelacruz on Wed Jul 01, 2009 4:22 pm

mommyof3kids wrote:Adela, At least I can Re-home him on CL... LOL :lol!:

omg!! so true!!
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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 1:13 am

I may get eggs thrown at me, but WHY have a pet snake?? Especially a dangerous one around children, and 12 feet? C'mon - that is bullshit to the n'th degree.

This so called BF needs to go down for this, and there needs to be laws enacted against having pet snakes. I can guarantee you the snakes would agree with me!!

This is just horrific!!!!!!!!!!

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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:28 am

lindamarie wrote:I don't understand anyone wanting a pet snake. That poor little girl what an awful way to die.
And again, where was her mother during all this???????????????????? Why didn't the mom make sure IF the damned BF insisted on having this snake, that that cage door was ultra secure?? It would have taken a good hour for a python to literally ingest a 2 year old. WTF???????????

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Post by laga on Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:32 am

Wrapitup wrote:
lindamarie wrote:I don't understand anyone wanting a pet snake. That poor little girl what an awful way to die.
And again, where was her mother during all this???????????????????? Why didn't the mom make sure IF the damned BF insisted on having this snake, that that cage door was ultra secure?? It would have taken a good hour for a python to literally ingest a 2 year old. WTF???????????

WTF is right!!!!! INGEST??? OMG!!!!, I thought the child was strangled...not that that is any less awful.
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Post by Guest on Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:35 am

The child was strangled right? Bite marks were found on her head. I did not see anywhere in the article where the Mother was. I agree and would not let anyone bring a snake in to my house.
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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:44 am

Don't they strangle you and then eat you?? Sorry to be so graphic but really...either way, bitten, strangled or ingested..there is just absolutely NO excuse for this. Both parents need to be arrested. They may as well have had a rabbit animal roaming freely in their home.

I just do NOT understand why some people INSIST on having wild animals as Pets. It's an oxymoron. Wild animals are WILD - they CANNOT and should not try to be tamed!!!!

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Post by mommyof3kids on Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:05 am

Wrap.. I will not throw eggs at you as I HATE snakes too, but I have 3 boys in my house (yes I included my hubby) that loves gross things. My oldest son never asks for pets and he started to peak interest in snakes and would watch shows on them and would talk non stop about how bad he wanted one... well my hubby took it upon himself and went out and bought a ball python and brought it home thinking I would get use to the idea... UM NOOOO. So he felt bad and tried to talk my son into taking it back and getting something else, well my son started crying and made me feel 2 horrible, so we kept the damn snake. We have had him for 2 months and he is really mellow and never acts aggressive or anything.. Well after hearing this story I went home last night and told my husband that the snake is going whether my son likes it or not.. My husband had heard this story and told me to chill out because our snake wont get to be 12 feet long! I don't care, the snake will be finding a new home before he reaches 2 feet long affraid

As for the Mother with the BF who has this snake... I wouldn't put the blame on her, she was probably told by the BF that the snake couldn't get out and if it did it wouldn't hurt her child. Ya she is stupid for being with a guy with a huge ass snake, but I feel sooo bad for what she has to deal with and the fact that she will forever live with that memory of seeing that snake wrapped around her daughter :no:
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Post by babyep on Thu Jul 02, 2009 6:48 pm

I read this, this morning and I just can't get this out of my mind. I don't like snakes, I told my boys if they ever threw a snake at me I would probably die from a heartache. I don't why I always think they will do this. I can't imagine how the mother is doing.
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Post by Heike on Thu Jul 02, 2009 8:44 pm

This is so sad for the little girl...Oh my god, how scary, I hope that she was quickly poisoned...that is all I can say.

No snakes for me...would never be able to feed live animals to a pet...no cuddles, no love, what FOR...? YET, I am quite sure that a twelve foot snake would not be in my home no matter what any man said to me.

Aimee, Iquanas are a good reptile pet, if he must have one.. as they are vegetarian and you can control their size.

Poor little Shaunia.

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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:59 pm

A constrictor is just as bad IMO. Ugh, not a fan of snakes!!

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Post by laga on Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:09 pm

I would like to know the particulars about this case. Was it foolish negligence on the part of the bf or a freak accident that the snake escaped the cage? Was the snake not fed and was hungry, or was it frightned? There was a member in chat on that other site a while ago who was very knowlegable about animals and particularly snakes. I cannot for the life of me remember who, but wish she would give us her input on this. It is very sad and horrifing, but as I understand, it is unusual for something like this to happen. I am hoping LE is investigating the why and will take appropriate action.
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Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:11 pm

Didn't this happen in Florida? If so, good luck w/LE doing any sort of investigating. They don't seem to give a rip about a child that has been missing for almost 5 months...I doubt they will have all guns drawn for a snake that got loose, even though a child lost her life. Noone should have a snake as a pet. Period!!

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Post by laga on Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:27 pm

I have nothing against animals, I even capture spiders, crickets, etc and return them outside when I find them in my house. I do not like the idea of killing any living thing unnecessarily. However, I have no pets, I like animals in their own habitat and I think they like it that way also. Having said that, I do not think others who love having their pets close should do otherwise. If we ban all animals who are dangers to children as pets, there would be many banned. As with all other cases of child endangerment, its the humans that should be held accountable.

I'm not so sure we should judge FL so harshly either....jmho
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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:35 pm

laga wrote:I have nothing against animals, I even capture spiders, crickets, etc and return them outside when I find them in my house. I do not like the idea of killing any living thing unnecessarily. However, I have no pets, I like animals in their own habitat and I think they like it that way also. Having said that, I do not think others who love having their pets close should do otherwise. If we ban all animals who are dangers to children as pets, there would be many banned. As with all other cases of child endangerment, its the humans that should be held accountable.

I'm not so sure we should judge FL so harshly either....jmho
The Florida thing was more "tounge in cheek" as I lived in Cocoa Beach for 14 years and miss Florida a lot!! Just seems to me LE has not really done a great job in some of the missing - but it may be a county to county things. I still think, though, we should not take in a wild animal and call it a pet. It is wild, and it should be allowed to live in the wilds.

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Normal Family says the snake was "playful"

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jul 03, 2009 12:01 am

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She died of asphyxiation:

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911 call:

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BTW, the mother is pregnant and they found marijuana in the house.

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Normal Autopsy: Girl Killed By Snake Died From Asphyxiation

Post by Wrapitup on Fri Jul 03, 2009 12:08 am

Autopsy: Girl Killed By Snake Died From Asphyxiation
Posted: 6:08 am EDT July 2, 2009
Updated: 5:33 pm EDT July 2, 2009

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. -- The details of an autopsy report released late Thursday afternoon revealed how a 2-year-old girl was killed by a python and the owner of the snake could soon face charges. The Department of Children and Families (DCF) is also now investigating the case for the sake of the two other children who lived in the house.

snippet from the link:

"In addition to the sheriff's office case, DCF has opened its own case to determine if the home provided a dangerous environment and if there was proper adult supervision for Shaianna and Darnell's two children, who all shared the home.

It'll be the second investigation launched this year. The first alleged drug use and abuse. It was just closed last month"
-----------------
Looks like the Florida DCF messed up on another case. Did they not see a 12 foot snake when they investigated last month?? Laws need to be passed to stop senseless deaths like this happening!!


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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Heike on Fri Jul 03, 2009 1:11 am

laga, thanks...I am clearly snake ingorant, did not realize they could not be both. There goes wishful thinking...I guess the bites...oh gosh. :no:

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Post by adelacruz on Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:21 am

wow!! i heard the 911 call and it just sent chills down my spine! i wanted a small snake but not anymore!!
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Normal DCF Releases Images Of Python That Killed Girl

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:07 am

Investigators Say Snake Belonged To Toddler's Mother, Not Boyfriend

POSTED: 3:15 pm EDT August 27, 2009
UPDATED: 6:19 pm EDT August 27, 2009

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. --
WESH 2 News has learned that the snake that strangled a toddler last month belonged to the girl's mother, Jaren Hare, not her boyfriend as investigators originally said.

Also Thursday, the Department of Children and Families has released 150 pages of documents containing new images of the snake that strangled 2-year-old Shaiunna Hare last month.

The images show a Burmese Python in an aquarium at the Oxford home of Shaiunna.

The snake escaped in July and attacked and killed the girl. A DCF spokeswoman said the snake was being kept in a different container by then, a container built by her mother's boyfriend, Charles Darnell.

In May, an anonymous tipster called the DCF hot line and reported Darnell and Hare using drugs in front of their children. Both tested positive for marijuana. Hare was pregnant at the time and warned by DCF that when the baby was born, if it tested positive they would have grounds to remove the baby and Shaiunna.

Investigators found Shaiunna to be at "moderate" risk due to the adult's drug use, but because she showed no signs of physical abuse DCF determined in June that there were no grounds to remove her.

DCF's investigations shows that a substance abuse counselor who interviewed Darnell called him a "classic text book abuser" with violent tendencies who punched a hole in the door in front of investigators to gain access to the house. But none of the investigators saw the threat posed by this creature sitting in an aquarium above the TV.

Both Darnell and the child's mother, Jaren Hare, have been charged with third-degree murder, manslaughter and child abuse.

DCF said Jaren Hare, 19, had her baby in July. It tested negative for drugs. The documents indicate that DCF repeatedly offered family services to help the couple, but they continually refused to cooperate.

Please go here to see images:

DCF Releases Images Of Python That Killed Girl

p.s. this is coming back up - the parents are being charged w/murder!!

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Normal Hearing Set For Strangled Girl's Parents

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:12 am

Child Was Killed By Pet Python Last Summer

POSTED: 8:24 am EDT June 16, 2010
UPDATED: 9:23 am EDT June 16, 2010

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. -- A hearing is set for Wednesday for the couple charged in the death of 2-year-old Shaiunna Hare.

Jaren Hare, the mother, and her boyfriend Charles Darnell's pet burmese python slipped out of its cage and strangled the child last July.

Hare and Darnell are being charged with murder.
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Previous Stories:

* May 12, 2010: Mom In Toddler Python Death Heads To Court
* March 10, 2010: Hearing Set In Python Toddler Strangling
* August 27, 2009: DCF Releases Images Of Python That Killed Girl
* July 30, 2009: State Wants Details In Case Of Girl Killed By Snake
* July 6, 2009: Snake Question Calls Peak For FFW
* July 2, 2009: Pet Python Strangles Toddler

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Normal Trial to begin in case of python that killed 2 yr. old toddler, Shaianna Hare/Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by snake.

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:16 am

BENITEZ/ORLANDO SENTINEL FILE / July 10, 2011)

By Stephen Hudak, Orlando Sentinel

July 10, 2011
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On July 1, 2009, authorities remove a python from the home where it killed 2-year-old Shaianna Hare in Oxford.

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Gypsy, a pet python that strangled a 2-year-old girl in her crib, won't appear in court in Sumter County this week when her owner and her owner's boyfriend stand trial for manslaughter and child neglect.

Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino decided that photographs of the serpent will have to suffice for jurors.

"I don't want a circus," said Magrino, a veteran homicide prosecutor whose résumé includes securing a death sentence for sex offender and child-killer John Evander Couey. "The snake's not on trial here."

Jury selection is set for Monday in the case of Charles "Jason" Darnell, 34, and Jaren Hare, 21. They are accused of failing to keep the 8-foot-6-inch albino Burmese python from slithering out of a terrarium in July 2009 and into bed with the toddler, Shaianna Hare.

The couple, who will be tried together, could get 35 years in prison each if convicted of all charges.

Darnell and Hare, Shaianna's mother, had been dating for two years before the snake attack, and Darnell had planned to adopt the little girl. The couple had a child together about a month after Shaianna's death.

Humane officials and animal-law experts across the U.S. say they will be watching the unusual criminal case, thought to be the first instance of a nonvenomous constrictor killing a child in Florida, where the thriving but invasive "reptile of concern" spurred state-sponsored python hunts in the Everglades in 2009.

According to investigative documents reviewed by the Sentinel, the yellowish constrictor, bought at a flea market for $200, hadn't eaten in a month and was kept in a glass terrarium with a quilt for a lid.

The snake weighed in at a sickly 13.5 pounds after the attack.


It sneaked out of the tank earlier that night and was slinking down the hall of the double-wide trailer when Darnell, headed to the bathroom, nearly stepped on it in the hallway. He told deputy sheriffs that he scooped up the python, slipped it into a mesh laundry bag, carried it back to the terrarium and put the quilt on the tank again.

Charge: 'Grossly careless disregard'

But the bag had a baseball-sized hole in it, according to the investigation by Sumter County deputies.

Darnell awoke the next morning to find the snake wrapped around Shaianna, its fangs in her forehead.

Orlando defense attorney J. Rhiannon Arnold, Darnell's lawyer, would not discuss the case. Ismael Solis Jr., Hare's lawyer, did not return telephone messages left at his law offices in Groveland and Orlando.

The felony charges accuse the couple, who lived near Darnell's mother's home in Oxford, about 60 miles northwest of Orlando, of acting with a "grossly careless disregard" for the safety and welfare of the child by failing to secure the python.

Before the attack, the python had escaped its tank 10 times since its last meal, a road-kill squirrel.

According to a death investigation conducted by the state Department of Children and Families, Jaren Hare's mother, Sheryl, was concerned about her daughter's ability to care for Gypsy and another pet snake, Dixie, a smaller Colombian red-tail boa, because neither Jaren nor her boyfriend had jobs or money.

She offered to keep the reptiles at her home, provide a sealed container for the python and buy rats for the snakes to eat — but the offers were rejected. Sheryl Hare is listed as a prosecution witness in the case.

The constrictor, which has recovered from a cleaver wound inflicted by Darnell after he pulled Shaianna free of the python's grip, remains in the custody of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Officials would not disclose Gypsy's location.

'Grim statistics'

The snake "did what it's supposed to do," said David Favre, a law professor at Michigan State University and editor-in-chief of the Animal Legal & Historical Center, a website that tracks legal issues related to animals. "You can't put a quilt over the aquarium and say you've carried out your responsibility of care. I think they're in deep trouble."

Since 1980, the Humane Society of the United States, which opposes ownership of constrictor snakes, has documented more than 200 incidents of snake attacks, escapes, abandonments and cruelty cases in 43 states. The reptiles have been linked to the deaths of 16 people in the U.S., including seven children.

"These grim statistics include not only children who have fallen victim to the reckless behavior of others, but experienced snake handlers," said Debbie Leahy, the organization's captive-wildlife specialist.

According to subpoenas in the court file, Magrino may present testimony from Eugene Bessette, a Gainesville-area snake expert who helped the state develop regulations for possessing pythons and other reptiles of concern. Bessette may testify about their dangers and precautions owners and handlers should take.

Legal experts say the prosecution likely will focus on the danger the unsecured predatory snake posed to the child, perhaps likening it to a loaded gun lying in the house.

An eerily similar trial resulted in a misdemeanor conviction for a father in 2002.

In that case, a Pennsylvania judge decided that snake keeper Robert Mountain was guilty of misdemeanor child endangerment but not guilty of involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment in the death of his 8-year-old daughter. The girl was strangled by the father's 11-foot-long pet python, Moe, who escaped a homemade tank.

The child, left alone when the father went to work and her mother went to buy them lunch, was killed as she sat on the floor watching cartoons. The mother received probation in exchange for testifying against the father.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:27 am

By Heather Sorentrue, Reporter
Last Updated: Saturday, July 09, 2011 10:47 AM

OXFORD --

Two years ago, a python snake killed a toddler as she slept in her crib in Sumter County.

Now, the girl's mother Jaren Hare and her boyfriend Charles Darnell are about to go on trial for the child's death.

The death of 2-year-old Shaiunna Hare shocked Central Florida and made national headlines.

With the trial nearing next week, people in the community are getting frustrated.

“You take a small child that age, there is no way that child could've moved the snake, gotten the snake off of them,” said Lisa Johnson. “So there is going to be a lot of emotion. I'm afraid the courthouse is going to be swamped.”

Prosecutors said the Burmese python had escaped from its cage several times before it wrapped around Shaiunna and killed her.

Hare and Darnell could face up to 50 years in prison if convicted.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:37 am

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:24 am

Details emerge in python strangling case

Updated: Friday, 28 Aug 2009, 12:28 AM EDT
Published : Thursday, 27 Aug 2009, 8:17 PM EDT

ELIZABETH ALVAREZ | FOX 35 News

MARION COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - FOX 35 has obtained a picture taken from inside the rural Sumter County home two months before a 2 year old living in the house was strangled by a pet python.

A worker with the Department of Children and Families took the photograph while investigating an allegation that Charles Darnell and Jaren Hare were using and selling drugs in front of Hare's daughter, Shaiunna.

The couple now faces murder charges after officials said they failed to properly secure their 8 1/2-foot pet python which escaped its aquarium and suffocated the girl in July.

In one photograph, you see a hole which was punched through a door, which the DCF worker said was made by Darnell, who became upset when the investigator arrived.

Also in the photograph, you see a store-bought aquarium sitting on top of an entertainment center, which appears secure.

"And in the corner, what you see is the aquarium in which the snake escaped from that night, which we believe is something that he had built," said DCF Spokesperson Carrie Hoeppner, who added that the reptile did not appear to pose a threat at the time.

The only thing DCF was able to determine was that both Darnell and Hare admitted using marijuana. DCF records show the couple later tested positive during a drug screening.

So why was Shaiunna allowed to stay in the home?

"Using drugs alone is not child abuse. We have to be able to demonstrate that that use of drugs is impairing your ability to care for the child, is actually inflicting abuse to the child," said Hoeppner. "The difficulty for us was that in the end we weren't able to demonstrate that their use for marijuana was directly linked to child abuse."


DCF said it offered a number of support services to the family. In the report, Jaren Hare tells DCF that she is the actual owner of the python.

And as far as the baby Hare recently gave birth to, DCF has taken custody of the infant. Though Hare tested positive for marijuana, the baby was clean.


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OMG!! Speechless!

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by raine1953 on Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:22 am

I had never read this story before, wow! DCF failed that child in more ways than one. That was a huge snake and if it hadn't eaten in a month the snake was seeking food so it was doing what came naturally. The problem w/ owning a huge snake is the people being irresponsible and not keeping it in an extremely secure cage and not feed it.
I do NOT defend these cases but I've handled a few snakes in my life and big ones at that, peoples 'pets' that had been well fed, I would NOT have ever handled one had I known the people weren't responsible. Small snakes aren't really a threat to children (boas, pythons) if kept responsibly but those huge ones do not belong being in a home w/ small children imo.
I'm an animal lover but my kids were raised knowing there was no way they could have a snake because you have to feed them live mice, rats or rabbits depending on it's size. I stuck to that rule.
Those people deserve to go to prison for sure.
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Normal Jury picked in killer python case; couple rejected plea deal

Post by Wrapitup on Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:55 pm


By Stephen Hudak, Orlando Sentinel

1:21 p.m. EDT, July 11, 2011
BUSHNELL — A six-member jury was selected today in the trial of a Sumter County couple charged with manslaughter and child neglect in the 2009 death of a toddler strangled to death by a pet python.

The accused, Jaren Hare, mother of 2-year-old Shaianna Hare, and Hare's boyfriend Charles "Jason" Darnell, rejected a plea bargain.

Five women and two men were chosen for the jury — one to serve as an alternate juror. Opening statements are set to begin at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.

The python, Gypsy, will not appear at the trial — Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino said he didn't want "a circus" and will show photographs of the serpent to jurors.

Darnell, 34, and Hare, 21, are accused of failing to keep the 8-foot-6-inch albino Burmese python from slithering out of a terrarium in July 2009 and into bed with Shaianna.

The couple rejected a pretrial plea offer to admit guilt to manslaughter, punishable by not more than 10 years in prison.

They face a possible maximum prison term of 35 years if guilty on all charges.

Free on a pretrial bond, Hare and Darnell were seated side by side and occasionally whispered to one another during jury selection.

Judge William Hallman started the morning with 21 prospective jurors, quizzing them about pretrial publicity and news accounts of the incident. Some prospective jurors' eyes widened as they learned that the case they may decide involves a python that killed a child.

All but eight said they had heard something about the case. Hallman asked the panel if they could put aside what they have heard and decide the case only on evidence they hear and see in the courtroom. Several potential jurors said they doubted they could be fair based on what they have read or heard. Two mentioned they had grandchildren and that would be a factor for them.

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Jason Darnell and Jaren Hare sit in a Sumter county courtroom on Monday, July 11, 2011. The two are on trial in connection with the death of Hare's daughter who was killed by a pet python. (TOM BENITEZ, ORLANDO SENTINEL / July 11, 2011)

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by artgal16 on Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:59 pm

Another example of the lack of common sense - mostly from the State of Florida that allows people to own dangerous animals, whether they be snakes, tigers,lions whatever. What has happened to the common sense of the people in this country. Someone needs to get an initiative on the ballot that NO exotic animals of any kind can be owned privately in any State. In England you cant even adopt a dog without going thru scrutiny.
We have lost it, Im telling you completely lost it.
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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 5:50 am

By Stephen Hudak , Orlando Sentinel
Mon Jul 11 2011 11:42 PM
BUSHNELL — As he hurried past reporters at the Sumter County courthouse, where a jury was picked Monday in the case of a killer python, Charles "Jason" Darnell insisted the death of his girlfriend's daughter "was an accident, that's all."

But the panel of six jurors that includes two grandmothers will be asked to decide that issue.

Prosecutors contend Darnell, 34, and the child's mother, Jaren Hare, 21, acted with reckless disregard for the safety of 2-year-old Shaianna Hare on July 1, 2009, when the toddler was strangled by an 8-foot-6-inch Burmese python they kept as a pet.

The couple, who will be tried together, rejected a plea offer that would have capped any prison time at 10 years, Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino revealed to Circuit Judge William Hallman before jury selection began.

If convicted of involuntary manslaughter, third-degree murder and child neglect as charged, the couple could receive as many as 35 years in prison. Hare gave birth to a child by Darnell about a month after Shaianna was killed.

The albino snake, bought at a flea market for $200, had not eaten for a month before attacking the toddler in her crib and had escaped a glass tank inside the couple's trailer in Oxford, about 60 miles northwest of Orlando. The snake had slithered out of the tank 10 times since its last meal, a road-kill squirrel, according to a Sumter County sheriff's investigation that showed the couple used a quilt as a lid.

Four prospective jurors were booted from the jury pool after admitting they had been tainted by news reports of the child's death or because they had grandchildren and doubted they could fairly assess the couple's guilt.

Defense lawyers J. Rhiannon Arnold and Ismael Solis Jr. also persuaded the judge to dismiss another potential juror because he said that he had given away his dog for fear that it posed a danger to his grandkids.

"I don't think I can do this," the man said. "I feel strongly about a parent's responsibility."

The panel of five women and two men — one of whom will serve as an alternate — were directed to return to the courthouse this morning for opening statements. Magrino said he will not bring the pet python into court, using photographs and expert witnesses to illustrate to jurors the serpent's size and potential danger.

He said he did not want to add to the "circus atmosphere" of the unusual trial, which will focus on the duty of Darnell and Hare to protect Shaianna. A half dozen TV satellite trucks from Orlando and Tampa were anchored on the courthouse lawn, and reporters surrounded the couple as they walked from court to the parking lot.

They have said that they considered the snake — named Gypsy — tame enough for Shaianna to hold with supervision.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 8:37 am

Art, don't you know Everything is an accident? Sarcasm duct and run

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Post by artgal16 on Tue Jul 12, 2011 8:47 am

Thats what Im afraid of now - that the Anthony case has done untold damage to jury system and the fight against child abuse and neglect. Casey Anthony has done untold damage and that idiot Keith Ablow believed her story and is now writing a book to justify her actions.
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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 8:59 am

I am not sure if he is justifying her actions as I have not read "Inside the Mind of Scott Peterson", which he also wrote. Have you read it, Art? If so, is that what he did?

Note: Off topic but okay in this instance, just as long as we don't start discussing the Anthony case (or what's left of it) here. Let's take this subject of authors writing books about Casey Anthony to her thread. We all do this, even me. LOL!

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Normal Prosecutor calls snake 'instrument of death' in killer python trial/ [b]Defense lawyer calls death 'terrible accident'[/b]

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 9:11 am

By Stephen Hudak, ORLANDO SENTINEL
9:53 a.m. EDT, July 12, 2011

BUSHNELL — Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino, during his opening statement in the killer python trial this morning, called the snake that strangled a 2-year-old girl "an instrument of death."

But "those two adult defendants are responsible for the unlawful death of Shaianna Hare," Magrino said, pointing at Charles "Jason" Darnell, 34, and the toddler's mother, Jaren Hare, 21, who showed little emotion during the prosecutor's remarks.

Darnell's lawyer, J. Rhiannon Arnold of Orlando, provided an alternative view, describing the child's death as "a terrible accident…that, with Monday morning quarterbacking, seems like it could have been prevented." Hare's lawyer Ismael Solis Jr. of Groveland also called it a terrible accident.

A panel of six jurors will decide the case.

Prosecutors argue that Darnell and Hare acted with reckless disregard for the safety of the little girl, who was killed on July 1, 2009, by an 8-foot-6-inch Burmese pet python named Gypsy.

Darnell and Hare are being tried together. If convicted of involuntary manslaughter, third-degree murder and child neglect as charged, the couple could receive as many as 35 years in prison.

Magrino outlined his view that Darnell and Hare failed to protect the child from the snake, which had previously escaped its tank.

In her opening statement, Arnold tried to distance Darnell from Hare, pointing out that both the snake and the child were hers, not his. She also insisted Gypsy was docile.

"This snake was no different than a family dog," she said. "While that could seem strange…some people like cats, some people like dogs. Some people have rabbits, some people have hamsters."

Solis, meanwhile, said Hare, who was 19 when Shaianna was killed, had owned the snake since she was 14. She and Darnell often took the python for a ride in the car and Gypsy rode in the front seat with Hare.

"The snake is like a little puppy to her," Solis said.

The first witness, Matthew Shelby, is a former child-protective investigator with the state Department of Children & Families. Shelby identified a photo of Shaianna and confirmed that she was born in May 2007.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 9:28 pm

Testimony Begins In Case Of Python Killing Toddler
Testimony Underway In Toddler Killed By Python Trial

Posted: 12:15 pm EDT July 12, 2011
Updated: 6:39 pm EDT July 12, 2011
SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. -- Testimony started Tuesday afternoon in the trial of a Sumter County couple who is charged with manslaughter, third-degree murder and neglect, in the death of a toddler. The toddler was strangled by an albino Burmese python that was kept inside the couple's home.

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Jurors saw the crib where 2-year-old Shaianna Hare was sleeping and where the python named Gypsy slithered into her bed. They also saw the enclosure that Gypsy escaped from.

The python was secured in a laundry bag inside the enclosure with a quilt on top, which was fastened in place with safety pins.

"Although that albino Burmese python is the instrument of death, those two defendants are responsible for the death of Shaianna Hare," said prosecutor Pete Magrino during his opening statement.

Magrino pointed a finger directly at co-defendants Charles Darnell and Jaren Hare for the July 1, 2009, suffocation death of Shaianna. The 8 1/2-foot snake escaped its enclosure inside the toddler's Oxford home off County Road 466 and slithered into the baby's crib.

An undercover Florida Fish and Wildlife officer testified that the python's terrarium was not properly secured. It was one of two large snakes that were in Jaren Hare's possession for years before she and her daughter moved in with Darnell.

Licenses and locks weren't required when the snakes were bought, but they were at the time of Shaianna's death. Defense attorneys told jurors that neither Hare nor her boyfriend saw the snake as a threat.

"The snake was always out, ladies and gentlemen. The snake was out. It was a pet like having a pit bull in the house. And all of a sudden the pit bull goes crazy," said defense attorney Ismael Solis.

Shaianna's grandparents did express concern.

"Did you ever offer to make a locking lid for what the python was kept in when your daughter was living over in Oxford?" Magrino asked her grandfather, William Hare.

"Yes sir," William Hare replied.

Hare was still waiting for the measurements at the time of his granddaughter's death. Jaren Hare and Darnell face more than three decades behind bars if they're convicted on the most serious charges in the case.

Sumter County investigators said the non-permitted python escaped its enclosure the evening before Shaianna's death. They also said that the snake was malnourished.

The Department of Children and Families (DCF) closed an investigation into the couple a month before Shaianna's death. DCF was called about drug abuse allegations, and the snake was in the home at the time.

The couple rejected a plea offer that would have avoided a trial.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Jul 12, 2011 11:00 pm

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By Stephen Hudak
Orlando Sentinel
Updated: 7:08 p.m. Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Posted: 6:28 a.m. Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The grandmother of Shaianna Hare, the toddler strangled in her crib by a pet python in July 2009, testified today that she begged her daughter not to keep the 8-foot-6-inch snake in the house because its container did not have a secure lid.

Sheryl Hare of Weirsdale in Marion County said she so feared for the safety of her tiny granddaughter that she also offered to buy the snake from her daughter, Jaren Hare, 21, for $500 and suggested that they put a plywood lid over the 200-gallon snake tank and anchor the lid with cement blocks.

"We've got dogs," Hare said when asked why she was concerned about the albino Burmese python escaping its tank. "I don't trust the dog, I don't the cat, I don't trust even the snake, no matter how tame they are. I wouldn't even trust a rabbit or anything, even a chicken. My chickens have chased me."

Jaren Hare, Shaianna's mother, and her boyfriend, Charles "Jason" Darnell, 34, are being tried together. If convicted of involuntary manslaughter, third-degree murder and child neglect as charged, the couple could receive as many as 35 years in prison.

A panel of six Sumter County jurors will decide the case.

In her testimony, Sheryl Hare said her husband also offered to come to the house to make a lid for the snake's enclosure. But her daughter replied that Darnell was going to make one — he just never got around to it.

Earlier, in his opening statement, Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino called the snake that killed the 2-year-old "an instrument of death." But "those two adult defendants are responsible for the unlawful death of Shaianna Hare," Magrino said, pointing at Darnell and Hare, who showed little emotion during the prosecutor's remarks.

Magrino outlined his view that Darnell and Hare failed to protect the child from the snake, which had previously escaped its tank.

While Magrino did not bring the snake into the courtroom today, the veteran homicide prosecutor rolled in the toddler's crib and the 200-gallon aquarium — and the quilt lid — for the jury to view.

Darnell's lawyer, J. Rhiannon Arnold of Orlando, provided an alternative view, describing the child's death as "a terrible accident…that, with Monday morning quarterbacking, seems like it could have been prevented." Hare's lawyer Ismael Solis Jr. of Groveland also called it a terrible accident.

Arnold also tried to distance Darnell from Hare, pointing out that both the snake and the child were hers, not his. She also insisted the python, named Gypsy, was docile.

"This snake was no different than a family dog," she said. "While that could seem strange…some people like cats, some people like dogs. Some people have rabbits, some people have hamsters."

Solis, meanwhile, said Hare, who was 19 when Shaianna was killed, had owned the snake since she was 14. She and Darnell often took the python for a ride in the car and Gypsy rode in the front seat with Hare.

"The snake is like a little puppy to her," Solis said.

Others who testified today were:

•Mathew Shelby, the child-protection investigator for the state Department of Children & Families who visited the trailer shared by Darnell and Hare in the spring of 2009 to look into a hotline complaint that children inside were exposed to drug abuse and environmental hazards. Shelby saw the albino Burmese python in a glass container on top of a TV stand. He said the container was sealed with a lid that was latched.

•Larry Phillips, a paramedic who was the first to arrive at the trailer the morning Shaianna was killed. He carried the child from a bed to the ambulance. He said rigor mortis had begun to set in as the child's limbs did not dangle limply but were rigid. Phillips said he saw puncture marks on the child's upper arms and forehead.

•Athena Ross, a Sumter County deputy sheriff who was among the first law-enforcement officers to arrive at the trailer. She was told the snake was under a dresser in the child's room. Ross also noticed there were no doors on any of the rooms inside the home. She identified pictures of the home, including a snapshot that showed a locked dog pen behind the trailer.

•Tom Ford, a crime-scene technician with the Sumter County Sheriff's Office testified about photos and a video he shot inside the trailer and the toddler's room. The yellowish python peeks out from under the dresser in the video. The footage also shows the toddler's blood stains on bunny-rabbit crib sheets. None of the rooms in the trailer had doors. Ford estimated the distance from the snake tank to the crib to be about 12 feet. He also snapped a photo of clutter and toys on the toddler's floor, including a stuffed animal, a blue snake.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by NiteSpinR on Wed Jul 13, 2011 12:23 am

She treated the snake like a PUPPY?
It was starving to death.
If the snake had been a starving puppy Animal Control Officers would have taken it away from her!

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:49 pm

Posted: 12:13 pm EDT July 13, 2011
Updated: 1:19 pm EDT July 13, 2011

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. -- Testimony continued on Wednesday in the case of a Sumter County couple on trial for the death of a toddler who was killed by a pet python that was kept in their home.

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State expert and snake farmer, Eugene Bessette, testified on Wednesday that a pet python kept inside a couple's home was malnourished when it suffocated Shaianna.

The snake escaped from its enclosure and suffocated Shaianna inside her crib. Charles Darnell and the 2-year-old's mother, Jaren Hare, are charged with manslaughter, third-degree murder and neglect in the death of the toddler.

Bessette was asked how he would describe the 5-year-old, 8 1/2 foot-long female Burmese python.

"Very, very, very lean, underfed, under-nourished," said Bessette.

Prosecutors said that was the approximate age and size of the pet python named Gypsy that crawled into the crib of Shaianna Hare on July 1, 2009 inside her home off CR- 466.

Bessette told jurors on Wednesday that while there are differences among animals, similarly aged Burmese pythons on his farm would average 15 to 16 feet and weigh roughly 140 pounds. Bessette also discussed the enclosure that was used to house the snake.

"That particular item, in the condition that it's in, with what it had on top of it, is totally impossibly incapable of housing a Burmese python," said Bessette.

On cross examination, Bessette said he had not been provided with photographs of the snake immediately after its removal from the couple's home.

Jurors will hear from the assistant medical examiner on Wednesday afternoon.

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:20 am

OXFORD --

By Thursday, a jury could begin deciding the fate of a Sumter County couple whose pet snake killed a toddler.

Both the prosecution and the defense rested their cases Wednesday.

We could be just a day away from learning whether jurors will hold the little girl's mother and her boyfriend responsible for the python being able to strangle 2-year-old Shaianna Hare.

Prosecutors showed jurors some graphic photos of the child's body after the snake slithered into her crib and coiled around her.

Prosecutors argue if the girl's mother, Jaren Hare, and her boyfriend, Charles Jason Darnell, had been responsible pet owners, the pet python never would have escaped its cage and made it into Shaianna's room just 15 feet away.

“When the snake constricted her, it was primarily around her head,” said Associate Medical Examiner Dr. Wendy Lavezzi. “We can tell that in autopsy because the area across her face which covers her eyes, nose, and mouth was white.”

Jurors also heard from a reptile expert, who said the state requires that Burmese pythons have secure cages with locks.

The pet python named Gypsy was kept in a mesh laundry bag in a glass tank with a quilt safety pinned on top.

The reptile expert testified it was impossible to secure the python that way.

He also told the jury at 8.5 feet long and weighing just 13 pounds, the snake was malnourished.

Defense attorneys argue the couple should not be held accountable for what they call a terrible accident.

Hare and Darnell did not take the stand in their own defense.

Jurors will hear closing arguments Thursday and then will start deliberations soon after.

Hare and Darnell are facing charges of third-degree murder, manslaughter and child neglect.

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Normal Killer python tried to eat toddler, deputy medical examiner testifies

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 14, 2011 7:07 am

By Stephen Hudak, Orlando Sentinel

4:56 a.m. EDT, July 14, 2011
BUSHNELL — The pet python that strangled a 2-year-old toddler in her crib apparently tried to eat the child, a deputy medical examiner said Wednesday as testimony concluded in the unusual manslaughter trial.

The six-member jury is expected to begin deliberating Thursday after closing arguments.

Defense lawyers for the toddler's mother, Jaren Hare, 21, and the mom's live-in boyfriend, Charles "Jason" Darnell, 34, contend the child's death was a terrible but unpredictable accident, while prosecutors say the couple ought to be held criminally responsible for failing to keep the albino Burmese python caged.

Neither Hare nor Darnell testified or offered their own witnesses. They also ignored questions shouted at them by reporters as they left the courthouse together through a back door with a deputy sheriff as an escort. If convicted of manslaughter, third-degree murder and child neglect, the couple could be sentenced to 35 years in prison. They rejected a pretrial plea agreement that could have put each in prison for up to 10 years.

The tragedy occurred July 1, 2009, in the couple's small home in Oxford, 60 miles northwest of Orlando.

Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino wrapped up the prosecution with deputy chief medical examiner Wendy Lavezzi, who decided the constrictor had coiled around Shaianna's face and neck and asphyxiated her.

"There were also several clusters of puncture wounds … that represent bites from the snake as the snake was trying to ingest her, basically," Lavezzi told grim-faced jurors who viewed post-mortem photos of the child.

The bite marks were on the crown of her head, her forehead, her cheek, around her mouth and her arms.

Magrino also displayed the girl's post-attack pictures to a snake expert as a counterpoint to defense arguments that the pet snake, which Hare bought for $200 at a flea market about seven years ago, was tame.

"Is that evidence of a snake being gentle?" he asked.

Testifying as an expert, Gainesville-area snake-farmer Eugene Bessette, who produces the reptiles for the global pet market, research and zoos, said a healthy female 5-year-old Burmese python like Hare's should measure about 15 feet in length and weigh about 150 pounds. Gypsy, as Hare had named the pet snake, was measured at 8 feet 6 inches and 13.5 pounds after the attack. Bessette termed her very thin, "almost unhealthy."

He said those depressed dimensions suggest a python that was "very, very underfed, undernourished." He said a healthy, well-fed python would grow from the size of a hot dog at birth to Gypsy's size in a year.

In the wild, the snake would be "very opportunistic," he said. "It would eat what it could find."

Bessette, who has 6,000 live snakes or serpent eggs incubating at his warehouse farm in Archer, described the glass aquarium from which Gypsy had escaped as "totally … incapable" of sheltering a Burmese python.

"It has no structure, no lid on top," he said. "It has no way to secure the animal."

The snake, which had not been fed since a meal of road-kill squirrel about a month before the attack, had escaped repeatedly from its tank, a 200-gallon aquarium with a quilt flopped over the top. Darnell found it slithering down the hallway of the manufactured home a few hours before Shaianna was killed, gathered it up, slipped it into a mesh laundry bag, tightened the strings and returned the snake to its tank.

But the laundry bag had a baseball-size hole in its side, and the snake had previously escaped from it.

Hare then heard her toddler cry about 1 a.m. and fetched the child a sippy cup of milk before going back to bed, according to transcripts of her interview with deputies. She and Darnell said they never heard Shaianna cry again.

The snake tank was situated about 12 feet from the toddler's room, which did not have a door.

The snake remains in the custody of the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission. Hare, who was about eight months pregnant with Darnell's child at the time, gave birth in August 2009 and has custody of the girl.

Darnell's two children, ages 12 and 7 at the time, were visiting at the time of the attack and asleep in the room with the snake tank. Their mother has custody of them.


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Normal Jurors find couple guilty of all charges in killer python case Mother, boyfriend face 35 years in prison; rejected deal for 10 years

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 14, 2011 1:44 pm

By Stephen Hudak, ORLANDO SENTINEL

2:33 p.m. EDT, July 14, 2011

BUSHNELL — After deliberating for two hours, jurors in the killer python trial this afternoon found Jaren Hare and her boyfriend Charles "Jason" Darnell guilty of all charges in the death of Hare's 2-year-old daughter Shaianna, who was strangled two years ago by an 8-foot-6 inch snake.

Conviction on manslaughter, third-degree murder and child neglect charges could send each to prison for 35 years in prison. Both earlier rejected a pretrial plea agreement that could have put each in prison for up to 10 years.

Hare started crying after the verdict was read, while Darnell showed no obvious emotion.

The verdict by the six-member panel came after closing arguments in which prosecutors and defense attorneys provided dramatically different views of the tragic death.

Assistant State Attorney Pete Magrino began his closing argument in the case by showing jurors two pictures with contrasting images. First, he showed a smiling photo of Shaianna Hare in life, then a post-mortem picture of the 2-year-old who had been bitten and strangled in her crib by a pet albino Burmese python, named Gypsy, that had escaped an aquarium with a quilt as a lid.

Magrino called the child's death in July 2009 "needless, senseless, careless, reckless and the responsibility for Shaianna Hare's death lives with those two defendants," pointing to Shaianna's mother, Jaren Hare, 21, and the mom's live-in boyfriend, Charles "Jason" Darnell, 34. The prosecutor said they were at fault "through their actions and lack of actions."

On the other hand, Darnell's defense lawyer J. Rhiannon Arnold began her final remarks by telling the jury, "It was an accident."

She recounted how Darnell — "a grown man" — cried in front of two law-enforcement officers remembering how he found Shaianna. Darnell, seated in the courtroom beside Jaren Hare, dabbed tears from his eyes as Arnold spoke.

But Magrino also pointed out that Jaren Hare's mother, Sheryl Hare, had discussed the infamous photo of a large Burmese python attempting to devour an alligator that it had tangled with in the Everglades.

"It doesn't take a rocket scientist…if that kind of snake will take down an alligator, it will eat something else even a small 2-year-old girl," Magrino said.

He stood beside the quilt-topped glass aquarium, which he called "ridiculous to keep a snake in," and told jurors, "the death of Shaianna Hare was totally preventable." He added: "The snake's at not at fault in this case, folks, it's a wild animal."

Magrino ended his argument by taking the 8-foot-6 inch pink string — which a captive-wildlife investigator for the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission had used to measure Gypsy's size — and draping it over Shaianna's picture in her crib.

Arnold puncuated her argument that it was an accident: "Charles Darnell and Jaren Hare never in their wildest dreams ever thought this would ever happen.…They had no idea that their tame pet would suddenly go wild."

Concluding her remarks, Arnold said Darnell was not guilty of manslaughter, third-degree murder or child neglect.

"He is guilty of making a stupid decision and having a stupid pet," she said. "He's guilty of not being a dog-lover and liking snakes."

Hare's lawyer Ismael Solis Jr. of Groveland gripped the poster-sized photo of Shaianna in his hands and called the death of Jaren Hare's toddler "a dagger across her soul."

"That event will shadow her for the rest of her life," Solis said. "But there's not a scintilla of evidence that Jaren Ashley Hare was ever a bad mother."

Solis said the prosecutor had unfairly raised the image of the Burmese python battling an alligator in the Everglades. He said Gypsy wasn't that snake — she was a family pet.

"We're talking about Gypsy, a pet that turned killer," Solis said.

Regarding Shaianna, "Did she look at this and say, 'gee, is this potentially a killer animal that's going to kill us all?…No, that was not her mindset," Solis said. "She was a loving mother."

He said Hare had owned the snake since was 14 and knew Gypsy to be docile and a source of joy.

Shaianna's biolgical father, Joseph Gilkerson of Leesburg, has been watching the trial and had said he wouldn't comment until after the verdict.

In the wake of the tragedy, the Legislature changed state rules to prohibit the possession of Burmese pythons and other large constrictor snakes.

Check back later for updates.

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Prayers for our little HaLeigh Cummings, wherever she may be!!

Nine-tenths of wisdom is appreciation. Go find somebody’s hand and squeeze it, while there’s time.
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Thank you RAINE for all you ARE!! I will ALWAYS hold you in my Heart!!
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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

Post by Wrapitup on Thu Jul 14, 2011 1:48 pm

This jury made the Right decision!!! Even though the parents did not premeditate this little girls death, they will spend years and years in prison while a Real murderer will be free as a vulture on Sunday!

Where is the justice??? angry

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Normal Re: Escaped pet python strangled Fla. child, Shaianna Hare/Trial began July 12. Couple accused of failing to protect 2-year-old girl from being strangled by python. Couple has been found GUILTY!!Sentenced to 12 years in prison

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