You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Worth a click

  • 46 years later, owner to get stolen Jaguar back
      LOS ANGELES – Forty-six years ago Ivan Schneider, successful Manhattan lawyer, bought himself the Jaguar convertible that would feature in a most unusual tale of unrequited love.
  • Dog missing from Pennsylvania found in Oregon
      PORTLAND, Ore. – A Jack Russell terrier that went missing from its Pennsylvania home has turned up at an animal shelter nearly 3,000 miles away.
  • 'Easy Rider' bike going to auction
    The customized Captain America chopper Peter Fonda rode in “Easy Rider” has come to symbolize the counterculture of the 1960s. Now it’s for sale.
Advertisement
AP
This image provided by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department shows an alligator Thursday June 6, 2013 in Lancaster, Calif. Part of the "Zoo to You" program in Paso Robles that introduces kids to animals, the alligator was being held by two females near a van after the animal urinated inside the van and the females had stopped to clean the the van. (AP Photo/ Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department)

Alligator makes pit stop near California intersection, monkey and kangaroo wait in van

LANCASTER, Calif. – A Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy was suspicious. When he heard two women were spotted near a Lancaster, Calif., intersection, and one of them was holding an alligator, he didn't buy it.

"I'm thinking, `Yeah, an alligator. OK,"' Deputy Michael Rust told the Los Angeles Times on Thursday. "Maybe an iguana, but an alligator?"

A 911 operator agreed. "Could it have been a lizard?" the operator tells a woman reporting "a couple girls carrying an alligator" on a recording released by the Sheriff's Department.

Rust investigated the report Tuesday morning and found not just a 4-foot alligator, but a kangaroo and monkey too, all inside the same van.

The women explained that the menagerie is part of the "Zoo to You" program in Paso Robles that introduces kids to animals.

The animals had just visited with students at Quartz Hill Elementary and had begun the nearly 200-mile journey home when they pulled over for some emergency cleanup.

"The alligator urinated inside his cage, and it's a long ways back to Paso Robles with the smell of alligator urine," Rust said. "So they decided to pull over."

Rust said he gets constant calls about wildlife, but they're usually for the kind of wildlife that live in his semi-rural area.

"We get all kinds of animal calls, from bulls to bears to mountain lions," he said. "But I've never heard of an alligator."

Advertisement