Video Shows Lizard Leap at California Police Officer During Search of Man's Coat

A Northern California police officer gets the shock of her life when a lizard leaps from the coat pockets of a man during a routine search, a body camera video shows.

The Sacramento Bee
A Northern California police officer gets the shock of her life when a lizard leaps from the coat pockets of a man during a routine search, a body camera video shows.
A Northern California police officer gets the shock of her life when a lizard leaps from the coat pockets of a man during a routine search, a body camera video shows.
Chico Police Department

CHICO, California -- A Northern California police officer gets the shock of her life when a lizard leaps from the coat pockets of a man during a routine search, a Facebook video shows.

The officer, wearing gloves, searches a man in a cowboy hat on a rural road in front of two police SUVs, the video posted by the Chico Police Department shows.

Another officer, filming the search on a bodycam, holds the man’s coat open for her, the video shows. A bottle of liquor sits on the hood of the closest vehicle.

The officer finds something inside a sock stuffed into the man’s coat, but tells him she’ll throw it away instead of citing him, the video shows. She returns to continue her search.

“You don’t have any dope on —” the officer says, jumping back and bursting into laughter as a lizard leaps from the man’s coat to the ground.

“It’s a lizard!” the second officer says, as she laughs uncontrollably. “It’s just a lizard.”

“I’m so sorry,” says the man being searched, slurring his words. “I forgot about it.”

“You got to let her know,” the second officer says as the first continues laughing, leaning against the patrol vehicle. “Next time let her know.”

“You gave me a heart attack,” says the first officer, laughing as she returns to the cowboy-hatted man. “That is not OK. Do you have any other creepy critters in your pockets?”

“No,” the man says.”

“That is not cool,” says the officer, still laughing. “That is not cool.”

“You can’t keep the lizard,” the second officer says. “Unfortunately, he ran off.”

“I won’t ever tell anyone,” the man promises as officers take him into custody. The Chico Police Department did not reveal the man’s name or suspected offense.

“Lizard attack! Just another day on patrol,” police wrote on the video post.

In comments on the Facebook post, people praised the officers for keeping their cool and laughing off the bizarre turn of events.

“Way to work with this human with kindness and humor! I’m sure it brightened his day and yours!” read one comment.

“Well that definitely brightened her day and the story went back to the office bringing some light relief,” read another comment.

The Facebook video, posted Sunday, has nearly 500 likes.

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