Odds and ends: Endangered snakes shipped to man, taken on city bus

By The Associated Press

MUNCIE, Ind. – This time, the snakes weren’t on a plane – they were on a bus.

Now, a man who police say picked up a package of venomous baby timber rattlesnakes at the post office and took it home on a city bus is facing charges.

Dustin A. Draper of Muncie faces preliminary charges of possession of an endangered species and transportation of a dangerous reptile without a permit. He was in jail Friday on $3,500 bond. It was not known if he had obtained an attorney.

Postal inspectors told the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and county police about the shipment of rattlesnakes. Officials were waiting for Draper when he got off the bus near his apartment.

“He wants to be cool and have venomous snakes,” said Sgt. Ed Rucker, a DNR conservation officer.

Mother mistakenly mourns man thought to be her son

LONDON – Police said Friday they had begun an investigation after a woman oversaw the cremation of a body she believed was her son – who turned up alive the next day.

Greater Manchester Police said the mix-up began when the body of a man in his 30s was discovered in Manchester, northwest England, on Oct. 12. He was identified as Thomas Dennison, 39, by a care worker who knew him.

Officials contacted Dennison’s mother, Gina Partington, 58, who identified the dead man as her son. The body was released to the family and the funeral took place Tuesday.

The next day, Dennison was discovered alive.

Partington said the resemblance between the dead man and her son was remarkable.

“I held his hand and kissed his head. I stayed with him for about 40 minutes and would have sworn he was my son,” she was quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News.

“We held his funeral on Tuesday this week at Southern Cemetery and there were genuine tears, because Tommy is a lovely lad,” she said.

From Associated Press reports