HARDEE COUNTY, Fla. — Deputies in Hardee County arrested a man on Wednesday after he was found with drugs and a live alligator during a traffic stop.
According to the sheriff's office, Anthony Richardson was stopped in the area of State Road 64 and Pioneer Park in Zolfo Springs.
Investigators found illegal drugs on Richardson and the alligator in a bag inside the vehicle.
The suspect told deputies he had the gator in his front seat before they searched the vehicle.
Richardson told deputies he didn't have an alligator trapping/hunting license, but said he came into possession of the gator through a friend. According to deputies, he said he planned to release it into a river.
Deputies called the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and released the gator into the Peace River after speaking with a wildlife officer.
Richardson was booked into the Hardee County Jail for multiple drug charges and illegally possessing or capturing an alligator.