BROWNWOOD, Texas (AP) - Doctors don't believe that a man was bitten by a rattlesnake in a
Wal-Mart, as he claimed, and they say he stole more than $15,000 in medical services from the
hospital, police said.
Douglas Hatchett, 31, a self-employed carpenter and painter who lives in Bangs, went to Wal-Mart
in nearby Brownwood on Monday. He said he reached for a pair of shoes in a box on a shelf when
the Western diamondback rattler, estimated at 14-16 inches long, bit him in the hand.
He said he then stomped it to death and told an employee, who got a snake-bite kit and called for
However, Brownwood Regional Medical Center doctors told police Hatchett had not been bitten by a
rattler. Hospital officials filed a police report.
Brownwood Police Chief Virgil Corwin referred questions Friday to Brown County prosecutor Michael
Murray, who said he had received no reports on the matter.
Neither Hatchett nor hospital officials immediately returned calls from The Associated Press seeking
Wal-Mart officials have been investigating Hatchett's claim.
"There are just too many inconsistencies for us and too many things that just don't add up,"
Wal-Mart spokesman Tom Williams told the Brownwood Bulletin.