Man who lost venomous cobra from home gets 15 months of community supervision (it’s still out there)

A 25-year-old man who owned a six foot venomous forest cobra that escaped its enclosure two years ago was sentenced to 15 months of community supervision.

Lawrence Matl was sentenced July 26, court records show. He was sentenced after a Dallas County jury found him guilty of the Texas Parks and Wildlife’s release from captivity code, a misdemeanor.

The code says a person cannot intentionally, knowingly, recklessly or with criminal negligence release or allow the release of certain animals, such as a venomous cobra! The good news is that these snakes are shy. The bad news is that bite can lead to progressive paralysis and death. The mixed news is that it hasn’t been found in the two years they’ve been looking for it – hard.

Per the terms of his supervision, Matl must pay a $998 restitution fee to the city of Grand Prairie and must not keep any reptiles or snakes as pets. If he violates the terms, he could be jailed for six months, records show.

Dallas News