Bay City News
A man who allegedly stashed more than 30 pounds of marijuana in his home and used a now-deceased caiman to protect it was arraigned Thursday, an Alameda County District Attorney's Office spokeswoman said.
Assif Mayar, 32, of Castro Valley, was charged with one felony count of marijuana for sale, district attorney's spokeswoman Teresa Drenick said.
Prosecutors could file additional charges in the case pending further investigation, Drenick said.
The caiman -- first thought to be an alligator -- was found by Alameda County sheriff's deputies near the 34-pound stash of dry, processed marijuana during a probation compliance check at a home in the 19000 block of Mt. Jasper Drive in Castro Valley on Tuesday afternoon, Alameda County sheriff's Sgt. J.D. Nelson said.
The 5-foot-long caiman, known as Mr. Teeth, was in a Plexiglas tank and was apparently being used as a deterrent to scare away would-be marijuana thieves, Nelson said.
Nelson said Mayar apparently acquired Mr. Teeth in 1996 to commemorate the death of rapper Tupac Shakur.
Mr. Teeth was taken to the Oakland Zoo, where zoo staff examined him and determined that he was in poor health, zoo officials said. Staff put Mr. Teeth in quarantine after the examination and he died early Thursday morning, according to the zoo.
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