Lake County deputies take alligator into custody after pursuit

Deputies with the Lake County Sheriff's Office took "Karen," an alligator, into custody stopping a vehicle on U.S. 10.

Deputies with the Lake County Sheriff's Office took "Karen," an alligator, into custody stopping a vehicle on U.S. 10.

Courtesy of Lake County Sheriff's Office

WEBBER TWP. — A high speed pursuit on U.S. 10 in Lake County resulted in an unusual passenger being taken into custody — an alligator.

According to a news release from the Lake County Sheriff's Office, the incident occurred about 11 p.m. Saturday, June 11. Upon seeing a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed on U.S. 10, a patrol sergeant initiated a traffic stop. 

The vehicle fled, leading deputies and Michigan Department of Natural Resources law enforcement on a pursuit that ended when the vehicle got stuck between two trees on the Rails-to-Trails pathway near South Forman Road in Webber Township. 

In addition to taking the driver in custody, deputies took into custody the passenger, "Karen," an alligator, after a short scuffle.

"Karen is not facing any charges at this time," police said in the release. "We believe she was an unwilling participant during the incident, nor do we believe she was even in control of the vehicle."

The driver, a 40-year-old male from Oak Park, was taken into custody and faces charges of obstructing police, escape/flight, obstructing justice and driving with licenses suspended, according to the incident report from the Lake County Sheriff's Office, in addition to several warrants for another jurisdiction.