A New Braunfels parent thought that her son's frantic phone calls were a harmless prank. But when she went to investigate the abandoned backpack at a school bus stop what she found rattled some neighborhood bones.
Rhonda Thigpen says the corner of Sanderling Way and Starling Creek is where many young kids wait to be picked up by the neighborhood bus and where she found a 42-inch western diamondback rattlesnake.
"I could not envision in a million years that someone would put a rattlesnake in a backpack and leave it for the kids to get," Thigpen said.
Luckily the snake didn't bite anyone. But snake expert Jarrod Forthman lost his thumb to a snake bite and warns that a bite from this type of rattlesnake can be deadly.
"It's the most common venomous snake in south Texas…unfortunately responsible for more snake bites than any other snake. It could have been a not so good situation for whoever put their hand in that backpack," Forthman said.
Authorities are still investigating how the snake got into the backpack. But according to Thigpen, just last week a 13-year-old boy from the same neighborhood was taken to the hospital after being bitten by a snake.