King cobra owner cited for snake's escape

Court records show 'Airplane Repo' personality to appear in court in October

(Florida Fish & Wildlife via CNN)

ORLANDO, Fla. – The owner of a king cobra that escaped from its Orlando home last week has been cited for the snake's escape.

[MORE: Cobra creates buzz | MAP: Find venomous snakes near you |  VIDEO:  Search ongoing  | AUDIO:  School alerts parents  | PICS: Traps set]


According to court records, Mike Kennedy will appear in court in October on the charges.

Records show that Kennedy waited 24 hours before telling authorities the snake escaped from its enclosure on the 5-acre property in the 4800 block of North Apopka Vineland.

Failing to report the snake's escape carries a $366 fine. Court records first stated that Kennedy was accused of obtaining the cobra illegally, but it was found to be an error. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission confirmed with News 6 that Kennedy obtained the cobra legally.

Kennedy is a personality on the Discovery Channel's "Airplane Repo" show. News 6 has learned that Kennedy houses and rescues exotic animals at his home. A website shows photos of Kennedy with several different animals.

The citation comes a day after Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials set traps with dead snakes as bait to lure the cobra out of hiding.

The snake, which escaped on Wednesday, was fed in a similar fashion in captivity, officials said.

The vanishing of the king cobra has left staff at Clarcona Elementary School weighing whether they should let their children be outside while the dangerous snake is possibly slithering nearby.

The school district determined it will move students from the portable classrooms to the main building, and will keep all recess inside.

Watch News 6 and stay with ClickOrlando.com for more on this story.