Sometimes, it’s a good thing to get more than you bargained for at the grocery store. For one Virginia woman, though, her ‘bargain,’ wasn’t what she expected.
According to WTVR in Richmond, Virginia, Kimberly Slaughter was patronizing a Shoppers Value store in Lunenburg County, approximately 80 miles southwest of Richmond, and had pulled a bag of popcorn from the shelf, when she noticed what appeared to be mouse feces in the bottom of her cart.
“I’m not getting that bag,” she told WTVR in an interview after the incident. Slaughter returned the bag to the bottom shelf, where, she said, she noticed more evidence of a rodent infestation, including droppings and traps.
Gathering up another bag of popcorn, Slaughter saw a small hole in one end and decided to bring it up to the register. As she walked the damaged bag to the front counter she discovered a snake inside of the bag.
“It had popped out, and I was, like, ‘well, hi,’” she said. The snake, who friends later told Slaughter was likely a common rat snake, then emerged from the confines of the popcorn bag and slithered around the cart before returning to its hide. “It was the full length of the cart,” Slaughter said. “It had prime real estate.”
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Slaughter, who has a baby at home, voiced concern for what might have happened had the reptile hitched a ride to her house in the bag. “My baby is just starting to walk,” she told WTVR-TV. “What if he was a bit older, or if my niece had thought ‘Hey! I want some popcorn,’ grabbed the bag, and had gotten bitten. It’s not safe. It’s not healthy.”
Store employees are looking into the incident. “We have no idea where it came from,” Brian Stanley, the store manager, said. “We are investigating, but we have no other indication that there could be others.”