CTA releases images of woman taking alligator to O'Hare
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The Chicago Transit Authority on Tuesday released images of the last person authorities say was seen with an alligator that was later abandoned and found by workers at O'Hare International Airport earlier this month.
According to the CTA, a woman boarded a northbound Blue Line train at the Pulaski station at about 1:17 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 1, with the alligator.
Images show the woman holding the alligator, which officials have said was mistreated and is in poor health, and showing it off to other passengers.
The woman in the images is seen exiting the train at the O'Hare Blue Line terminal at 2:17 a.m., according to a CTA news release. At 2:44 a.m. the woman is again seen on security cameras near the O'Hare rail station, this time without the alligator.
The 2 foot alligator was found by airport workers later that day and turned over to the Chicago Herpetalogical Society.
Officials nicknamed the gator "Allie," and Jason Hood, president of the society said the reptile was very sick when they took it in.
"He's in pretty bad shape and was probably not being fed a proper diet," Hood said at the time. "It would have been harmless to anyone who found it."
Hood said the nonprofit will rehabilitate Allie at least until April and then send it to an alligator farm out of state. Illinois weather conditions are not ideal for alligators, which typically live in much warmer climates.
It is illegal to own an alligator, according to the Illinois Dangerous Animals Act, but he could have been purchased illegally online or in a state such as Indiana where it is still legal to own alligators, Hood said.
"Those responsible for this act can face a misdemeanor charge of cruel treatment of an animal or face a fine $300 to $1,000 for cruelty to animals for abandoning the animal in a public place," according to the CTA news release.
The CTA is asking for anyone with information about the woman in the images to call 1-888-YOUR-CTA or email email@example.com
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