NORWICH – The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) discovered a Norwich home had harbored raccoons and sold them to another home, where the new raccoon owner had been bitten, before executing a plan to retrieve the raccoons and test them for rabies.
According to DEC Press Office Representative Benning DeLaMater, on January 23 Environmental Conservation Officers (ECO) Brett Armstrong, Mary Grose, Matt Burdick, Andy Kostuk, and Lt. Will Burnell executed a search warrant in Norwich.
DeLaMater said Armstrong was investigating reports of individuals harboring raccoons as pets when he received information that raccoons were being held inside a Norwich home.
"The possession of live, wild raccoons is both a violation of state law and a health hazard, as raccoons are a rabies vector species," said DeLaMater. "Upon execution of the warrant, the ECOs found 13 people, including children, living in the house."
He said officers discovered evidence that several raccoons had been kept there, but were sold to another Norwich resident...