A 62-year-old woman from Sharon, Pennsylvania, got the fright of her life while headed to the bathroom of her fifth-floor apartment on Jan. 13.
Debbie LaMotte says that, at first, she thought there was a beautifully patterned scarf on her floor. Then she had a closer look. The “scarf” turned out to be a 4-foot-long python snake that moved when she touched it with her cane, reports the New York Daily News.
LaMotte rushed to take refuge in another room, where she says she called 911. She says the serpent began “poking its nose under the door” while she was on the phone and that the dispatcher instructed her to try to keep it contained, which she did by using her cane.
When police arrived, they reportedly used the woman’s “old lady grabber” to get the large snake into a bag. It was eventually transported to a local reptile rescue group.
Police say they aren’t sure how the snake made its way up five flights of stairs and confirmed that it was too big to fit through any of the building’s pipes.
The serpent has been confirmed to be a ball python, reports the Sharon Herald, which squeezes its prey to kill it before eating it.