Thousands of dollars worth of reptiles stolen from exotic pet shop in Livonia

Police seek man wearing black shoes with distinct white soles

LIVONIA, Mich. – More than 20 expensive reptiles were stolen Monday morning from a pet store in Livonia. The shop owners said thousands of dollars worth of reptiles were stolen, but the thief also took their personal pets.

Hazel Bunting and her mother, Jackie May, opened Stingers Exotics together after May’s husband died.

"It’s heartbreaking," May said. "We cry, then we clean and we, you know, we look in the empty cages and we’re heartbroken."

Video surveillance caught the burglar in action at around 1 a.m. Monday. A man can be seen stuffing the reptiles into a sack. Their estimated value is $5,000.

"If he knew anything about reptiles, he wouldn’t chuck them into a bag of bearded dragons," Bunting said. "Some of the bearded dragons could have been eaten."

Their personal pets, bearded dragons named Betty and Ace, were also taken from the store.

Police said the man used a large rock to break through the front door of the shop to get inside.

"This is more than a business to us," Bunting said. "We treat the animals as if they're our own."

Also taken were their personal pets, two bearded dragons named Betty and Ace.

The shop's loyal customers have been letting the women know that they care.

"They grab us and hug us, and they feel our pain, and they're grieving, too," Bunting said.

The man was wearing a hooded sweatshirt and a mask. Detectives said he was wearing black shoes with distinct white soles. You can see the surveillance video in Shawn Ley's full story posted above.

Police said more than 25,000 people have seen a Facebook post about the incident.

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