Monday Weisblog: Snakes in a superstore

I sincerely doubt that I will be buying anything from a Wal-Mart garden center in the near future – and neither will Jay Richitelli. It seems that Mr. Richitelli is the third person since 2006 to be attacked by pygmy rattlesnakes in Florida Wal-Mart garden centers.

pygmy“It felt like fire going through my arm,” Richitelli said. He then proceeded to shake it off and – get this – stomp on it until he died. Talk about an adrenaline rush!

After the attack, he spent five days in the hospital. He returned two days later with fluid on his lungs.

Richitelli, 42, is now suing the retailer, claiming that since two others prior to him were attacked, they should have taken better precautions to ensure it did not happen again. His attorney, Armando Paz, said, “Since it happened in the past, it was very foreseeable it could happen again.”

He also claims he’s still sporting the scars from the attack, and also suffers from permanent respiratory issues.

Not sure how I feel about this one. It happened on the store’s property, so they’re probably going to have to pay up. But I also think Wal-Mart has a reasonable expectation that their garden products they receive from vendors shouldn’t include pygmy rattlers.

I know, I know … they could have wandered into the garden centers on their own, but why isn’t this happening at other stores if that was what’s going on?

A curious case, indeed.

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