Deputies at the Marina del Rey Sheriff’s station, in conjunction with the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control, killed a five-foot long rattlesnake on July 31 after the animal became a threat to the public.

According to a press release issued by the Sheriff’s Department, deputies responded to the front steps of the Marina del Rey Station (13851 Fiji Way) regarding reports of a rattlesnake sighting. When deputies arrived on the scene they encountered a large rattlesnake on the public steps of the building.

The deputies attempted to confine the rattlesnake while awaiting the arrival of animal control. During the encounter the deputies were able to briefly confine the rattlesnake, but it escaped and began to quickly move towards the Marina bicycle path that was heavily populated with bicyclists, pedestrians walking their dogs, as well as mothers walking with their children. The deputies identified the immediate threat to the public and became concerned for the safety of the residents and visitors on the bicycle path.

Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control arrived on scene and a joint effort ensued to try to safely capture the rattlesnake. The rattlesnake moved quickly and the safety of the deputies and the animal control agent became compromised. The deputies and animal control placed themselves in harm’s way to try to capture the rattlesnake since a safe distance for a rattlesnake sighting is approximately 15 feet.

Deputies in conjunction with animal control, made a decision to end the rattlesnake’s life to prevent it from biting a member of the public because it’s safe capture could not be accomplished.

The rattlesnake, according to animal control, carried enough venom to cause death to several large adults. It is believed that the rattlesnake may have migrated from the nearby Ballona Wetlands.

The Marina del Rey Sheriff’s Station polices the unincorporated communities of Ladera Heights, Marina del Rey, Santa Monica Bay, View Park and Windsor Hills.

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