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Two Milwaukee Reptile-Handlers Charged


MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WTAQ) - Two reptile-handlers in Milwaukee have been charged with a total of 19 counts of animal abuse and violating rules for endangered species.

60-year-old Terry Cullen was also charged with a sexual assault that police were investigating when they found over 200 exotic animals living in squalor. Cullen is charged with felony counts of second and third degree sexual assault, felony false imprisonment, and a dozen animal misdemeanors.

His conservancy associate, 50-year-old Jane Flint, is charged with 7 animal misdemeanors. A judge ordered a $10,000 bond for Cullen Thursday. He’s due back in court June 16th for a preliminary hearing. Flint does not have a court date yet.

The sexual assault reportedly happened in late February. According to prosecutors, Cullen was at a reptile show in Chicago when he met a 24-year-old woman – and he took her to Milwaukee to interview her for an internship with his conservancy.

Among other things, she told police she was startled by a crocodile at the facility that was roaming free. Later at Cullen’s house, she said she began to cry before Cullen sexually assaulted her. He reportedly took her home the next day, and she waited until this month to report it to police.

Cullen’s attorney, Stephen Glynn, denied the sexual assault charges and said Cullen has an international reputation for doing good things with the creatures he was accused of abusing.