UPPER MACUNGIE TWP., Pa. -- Police in Pennsylvania said an officer shot a man's pet snake after it wrapped itself around his neck and would not let go.
Officers rushed to the man's home in Fogelsville Wednesday afternoon.
Police said they asked the dispatcher to repeat the call because it was so unusual.
A family member led them to the 28-year-old man who was lying on the floor unresponsive with a 15-foot snake wrapped around his neck.
One of the officers was able to fatally shoot the snake without injuring the man.
"Because the snake was so large, the midsection of the snake was wrapped around the throat," said Lt. Peter Nickischer with the Upper Macungie Township Police Department. "The head of the snake was just far enough away from the victim that the officer made a split-second decision and he proceeded to shoot the snake in the head."
Nickischer said the snake did not die right away.
"It wasn't like it just died," Lt. Nickischer said. "It started to slither away, luckily away from the officers, away from the direction that they were trying to pull this gentleman. They realized it was a matter of life and death with seconds to make that decision. Praise the officers. They did what they had to do. It was a safe shoot."
Neighbors said they have frequently seen their neighbor in his front yard holding a snake, and they've seen multiple snakes through the window.
Police say have they never responded to anything like this before.
"I think one of the officers described it as a scene from a horror movie, and that's probably the most appropriate way to describe it," said Nickischer.
The man was still alive when emergency responders rushed him to the hospital, but his current condition is unknown, Lt. Nickischer said.
Police aren't sure what kind of snake it was, but they said it was large.