A Savannah man today was sentenced to 12 months on probation and banned from owning animals in response to the March seizure of exotic animals housed at his southside home.

Brian Allen Nettles, 25, must also pay more than $800 in restitution and medical bills for relocating and caring for the animals, most of which were underweight and malnourished. Chatham County Recorder’s Court Chief Judge Tammy Stokes ruled.

He also musts perform 100 hours of community service with the Savannah-Chatham mounted patrol, Stokes ruled. She left open the possibility of early termination of the probation after six months if all payments and other conditions of the probation were completed.

Nettles is to return to court June 24 and present proof of vaccinations of his dog if he wants to keep the animal and must return before Stokes Dec. 16 for a status review of his compliance.

“You’re not demonstrating to the court that you’re serious about taking care of your animals,” Stokes said after Nettles admitted he had not vaccinated the dog.

Under an agreement reached in chambers, Nettles admitted to keeping animals in unsanitary conditions, failure to remove dead animals and no shots of the animals in his care.

Two additional charges of animal neglect and possession of an alligator or alligator parts will remain as status offenses during probation and be removed upon successful completion of probation.

Included in the restitution if $430 due to Mike Ramsey, chapter leader of the local Georgia Reptile Society for caring and finding new homes for the animals. Nettle owes an additional $409.24 in medical bills, Stokes said.

Animal control officers found an assortment of animals at the home at 12405 Deerfield Road March 26 including an American alligator, three pythons, two geckos, a monitor lizard, a red tail boa constrictor, two tortoises, three dead turtles and a dead rat.

All of the animals lacked appropriate food, water and heat sources. Testimony showed Nettles faced eviction and all water and heat had been turned off. He was not living in the house, Stokes said.

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