Description: Blond-haired white man, 6-foot-2, 180 pounds
Age: 28-32 years old
Distinguishing marks: Tattoos on his left forearm, earrings in both ears, silver hoop earring in left ear
Clothing: Olive green short sleeve shirt, safari pants
Contact: West Valley detective division at 818-756-8553
Police release composite of man who mailed snake
By Phillip W. Browne
Police released a composite sketch today of a man suspected of mailing a deadly South African spitting cobra to a Winnetka songwriter.
The man depicted in the sketch brought the boxed snake to Postnet, 9909 Topanga Canyon Blvd., in Chatsworth, on Feb. 20, and left the box there for mailing, said Los Angeles Police Officer Renee Montoya.
"He had a lot of distinguishing characteristics, and it made it easy for employees to remember him," Montoya said.
Employees at Postnet described the suspect as a blond-haired white man, 28-32 years old, 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds, with tattoos on his left forearm, Montoya said. He was wearing an olive green short-sleeved shirt and green safari pants, wore black stud earrings in both ears and a hoop earring in his left ear.
Joseff Calhoun, 30, received the package on Feb. 21 and opened it. The snake's head emerged and Calhoun quickly closed the box and contacted authorities.
Whoever sent the snake could be charged with assault with a deadly weapon, attempted murder and violations of the federal Fish and Game Code, Richter said.
Calhoun told police he did not have any enemies and didn't know why anyone would send him a snake. But police later confirmed he received a threatening letter in November.
Calhoun's attorney, Malanie Baghdaian, said she hopes the suspect is caught.
"It's something that somebody has planned," Baghdaian said. "So we're hoping that they find out who did this so (Calhoun) won't be hurt."
A curator of reptiles at the Los Angeles Zoo said the snake appeared to be 1 to 2 years old and had a serious head wound. It was later destroyed.