By Steve Large

ELK GROVE (CBS13) — An Elk Grove woman is facing a felony animal cruelty charge after allegedly killing her roommate’s pet python.

She says she did it to save the feeder rats the snake was going to eat.

Elk Grove police arrested Heaven Richie after she called police herself, allegedly admitting to killing the animal.

The python’s owner Michael Hall says he walked into his bedroom and found Richie stabbing the snake.

“She killed my snake,” Hall said. “Scared me to death; I didn’t know what to do.”

Hall recently took pictures of his 1-year-old reticulated python, named Fangy.

Fangy was still small, but reticulated pythons grow to be the longest and largest snakes in the world.

Elk Grove police say Richie seemed full of remorse when she called the cops on herself.

“She felt guilty,” Elk Grove police officer Jason Jimenez said. “And what she told our officers that were on scene, is that they had purchased some rats to feed the snake, she had developed a bond with the rats, and when it came time to feed the snake one of the rats, she was not going to do it.”

“For us, this was a good example, of regardless of what kind of animal it is, that we’re going to take these type of cases seriously and investigate them to the fullest of our ability,” Jimenez said.

A roommate rift, over a pet python, and it’s live pet food.

Now the snake is dead, and police say the alleged cold-blooded killer has confessed to the crime.

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