Scaly visitor leads to ‘standoff’ outside Louisiana school during exams, photos show

Screengrab from the Slidell Police Department Facebook page
·2 min read

An unexpected guest showed up outside a Louisiana school — and led to a minutes-long “standoff.”

The scaly visitor — a 4.5-foot alligator — interrupted students’ exams when it was spotted this week on the grounds of Slidell High School, according to the city’s police department.

The gator was seen outside a classroom window and roamed a sidewalk on the campus, photos show.

School resource officers made sure students were safe and reported having “a 30-minute standoff” with the reptile. Then, video captured an animal control officer flipping the gator onto its side while wrangling it in.

“The 4.5 foot alligator was turned over to Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, which ensured its safe release back into the wild,” police said in a news release.

The alligator appeared at about 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 17. At the time, officers said a student testing period had just started.

After police in the city roughly 35 miles northeast of New Orleans posted about the sighting on Facebook, several social media users chimed in with light-hearted comments.

“Make sure he knows this is going on his permanent record,” one person wrote.

“You might live in Louisiana if you see an alligator on the way to school,” another person commented.

For its part, the Slidell Police Department joked that if the gator returns, it would face warrants for trespassing and “prohibition of interference with educational process.”

Alligators live near waters in the southeastern United States. The creatures can grow to be more than 13 feet long and weigh over 500 pounds, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries said on its website.

While it’s rare for gators to attack people, everyone is encouraged to keep their distance from the animals and call for help if they notice the reptiles becoming comfortable around humans.

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