When William Johnson made a couple of suspicious U-Turns at the intersection of Texas 35 and 288 in Angleton, TX, early Sunday a state trooper pulled him over.
Then the trooper noticed a 6-foot alligator contentedly riding next to the back window of Johnson's car. Johnson said he found the gator on the side of a road.
But it was allegations that Johnson had been taking things out of a mobile home in the nearby town of Brazoria that sent him to jail on a burglary charge. Investigators found a hair trimmer and video game controller in his pockets.
Johnson, 30, and his fondness of reptiles, had already come to the attention of local police, Brazoria Police Chief Neal Longbotham said.
On Friday an officer responding to a call about a man bothering people in the parking lot of a local drive-through restaurant gave Johnson a citation for public intoxication.
Johnson said he was from Tennessee and was on his way to Corpus Christi. He said he'd stopped in Brazoria to work briefly for a tree trimming service.
Johnson advised the officer that there was a water moccasin snake in his car and that the snake had already bitten him on the hand.
An animal control officer found the snake and removed it, Longbotham said.
Johnson refused medical treatment for his hand.
Early Sunday a resident of a local mobile home park said Johnson knocked on his door and asked for help hauling a big television out of a mobile home, Longbotham said.
"The neighbor told him that's not your house," the chief said.
Then the neighbor noticed the alligator in the back seat of Johnson's car, Longbotham said.
Johnson left the television in the yard and drove away.
A few minutes later he was arrested by the trooper. He is now in the Brazoria County Jail, held on $25,000 bail on a burglary charge.
A game warden took the alligator away.
Johnson told investigators that he found the snake and the alligator on the sides of roads and picked them up because he has an interest in reptiles, Longbotham said.
"Just a typical day in Brazoria," the chief sighed