Bensonhurst is not the Florida Everglades: Couple indicted for keeping alligator, drugs, guns

December 6, 2012 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
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Brooklyn isn’t the Florida Everglades, but a Bensonhurst couple is in trouble with the law for allegedly keeping an alligator in their house.

Michael Volpe, 32, and his wife Alisa Volpe, 25, have been indicted on several charges, not only for the alligator, but for keeping drugs and weapons in their West 6th Street home, Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes announced on Dec. 4.

On Oct. 1, officers from the 66th Police Precinct executed a search warrant at the home of Michael and Alisa Volpe, a one-bedroom basement apartment. When the officers entered, they found metal knuckles, a fully-loaded revolver, and a loaded pistol, according to the indictment. Police also recovered a variety of prescription drugs including Alprazolam pills and Oxycodone pills, Hynes said.  Marijuana was also found, the district attorney said. 

In addition, there was an alligator, which was approximately three feet long, in a tank in the living room, according to the indictment. The alligator was taken away by Animal Care and Control.  Under the New York State health code, people cannot possess wild animals without a special permit. 

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The criminal charges against Michael Volpe included three counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree.  Michael and Alisa Volpe were both indicted on charges that included three counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, possession of ammunition, four counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, overdriving, torturing and injuring animals and failure to provide proper sustenance, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

If convicted, Michael Volpe faces a maximum of seven years in prison and Alisa Volpe faces up to one year in jail.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Lisa Marie Vellucci and supervised by Deputy District Attorney Dianne Malone, chief of the animal cruelty unit.


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