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Owner of missing cobra cited for delay in reporting escape

Officials say the owner of a king cobra that escaped an Orlando home last week is being cited for not immediately reporting it.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports that Mike Kennedy realized the snake had escaped from its cage last Tuesday after returning from a two-day trip. Court documents say Kennedy spent about 24 hours searching for the cobra before reporting it missing.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that the misdemeanor charge carries a $366 fine, though Kennedy can request a hearing to contest it.

Wildlife officials say at least one patrol officer will continue to check the traps around the 5-acre property where the cobra escaped. Wildlife officials say they hope scaling back the search will make the cobra feel more comfortable about coming out from its hiding spot.

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Information from: Orlando Sentinel