4-foot gator named 'Wally' found in shed

MULINO, Ore. (AP) Clackamas County sheriff's deputies responding to a tip found an alligator that was being kept in a shed in a rural area south of Portland.

Sgt. Robert Wurpes says that although the person who lived at the Mulino property had moved, a relative had been returning to care for the 4-foot-long alligator named Wally. The sergeant says the gator is healthy and estimated to be 12 to 14 years old.

The problem: Wurpes says owning alligators is prohibited in Oregon without a special permit and no permit had been issued for Wally.

The sheriff's office enlisted the help of reptile specialist Richard Richey on Monday to remove and properly care for the alligator.

After they broke the lock on the shed to gain entry, Richey said Wally wasn't captured without a fight.

"Once we did that, he went into defense mode and he actually charged a sheriff, leaped off the platform into the water, mouth open, snapping. He was putting up a good show," he said.

Richey said the reptile is doing well.

KATU News contributed to this report.

Photo courtesy of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.