Dalton man charged with stealing snake and frog from local pet s - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Dalton man charged with stealing snake and frog from local pet store

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John Allen Bedwell John Allen Bedwell
WHITFIELD COUNTY, GA (WRCB) -

A North Georgia man is facing charges, accused of aggravating some snakes in a local pet store, stealing one and losing a frog in the process.

It all started at the Petland on Walnut Avenue in Dalton. Petland's District Manager tells us the ball python was returned and is doing well but the albino pack-man frog is still missing. They believe it's still somewhere in this parking lot and if you see it, they hope you turn it in. 

"It is bizarre, why are you going to steal a snake and a frog," said resident Darlene Chantler.

Residents and police are puzzled, they aren't sure why or how it happened. 

"To me a python is a big snake," said resident Jinny Kinsey. "How do you hide a snake to steal it?" 

"Wow, it makes you wonder where he might of put it," said Chantler. 

46-year-old, John Allen Bedwell is charged with theft. Petland employees tell Channel 3 he was first asked to leave the store after they caught him aggravating the snake's tank. Police say he was later spotted playing with the snake outside about 30 minutes later. He took off on an orange bicycle with the words "General Lee" on the front. 

"Wow do you go with a snake on a bicycle," asked Kinsey. 

Workers noticed the frog was gone too and called police. Officers found Bedwell and the snake behind a nearby sub shop.

They say he was holding a red Solo cup filled with beer.

Officers found the missing snake in the bushes. Bedwell told police he had just found it there. 

"I thought he was crazy, I really did," said Kinsey. 

Employees identified Bedwell as the suspect, he was also charged with having an open container. On his way to jail, he told officers that he didn't know anything about a snake or a frog.

"I think it's crazy maybe they will find the frog at least they got the snake back," said Chantler. 

Officers want you to be on the lookout. 

"If people see the frog out there by happens stance obviously we hope the frog is okay and we would like to get it back to the store so they can have their merchandise back," said Bruce Frazier, Dalton Police Dept. 

"I have a feeling that snake might of ate that frog," said Kinsey. 

Store employees say they they've never had thefts like this before, Bedwell's motive remains a mystery. 

"Only in Dalton, that's the truth only in Dalton," said Chantler. 

Petland says it will take several weeks to get another albino frog into the store, Bedwell is out on bond. 

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