Newsoms man pleads guilty to possession alligators, turtles

Published 10:39 am Monday, November 21, 2011

NEWSOMS—A Newsoms man has pleaded guilty to illegally possessing two juvenile alligators and 20 box turtles.

Jason Holloman, 31, was ordered to pay court costs of $101 after recently appearing in Southampton County General District Court. Holloman faced up to $1,000 in fines for misdemeanor charges of possessing more turtles than permitted by law and possessing the alligators.

Acting on a tip, game officials on Sept. 22 seized the 18- to 20-inch long alligators and box turtles from Holloman’s home on Mount Horeb Road between Franklin and Newsoms.

It’s against the law to import a species — alligators — that’s not native to Virginia. Alligators are found in Florida, Louisiana and the southern parts of Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi.

Virginians also cannot get a permit to possess alligators because people tend to release them into the wild, and game officials don’t want them in Virginia’s waters.

Holloman purchased the alligators at a reptile show in Pennsylvania.

Virginians can legally possess up to five box turtles. The turtles were seized because Holloman was over the limit.

The alligators have been turned over to the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk. The box turtles, some of which Holloman had since he was a kid, went to a rehabilitation center in Virginia.