COVINGTON, LA (WVUE) - It was supposed to be a routine overnight patrol for Covington Police Officer Lance Benjamin, until he came across a perp like no other.
"One I couldn't exactly put handcuffs on," said Benjamin.
You may be wondering, who? Who would do such a thing in a police cruiser on Christmas Eve? An owl, that's who.
"As I was exiting the subdivision, going about 10 miles per hour, suddenly I felt something hit the left side of my face. Thinking, okay maybe it was a football or something. Then I felt some scratching on the back of my head and some pecking," said Benjamin.
An owl flew right into his open driver's side window and made himself right at home.
"Slapped me a few times with his wings, kept on going with his talons," said Benjamin.
Benjamin never thought he would have to use his defensive driving training for something like this, but it was put to good use.
"Tried to keep control of my car, went into a ditch, avoided some trees. Finally, was able to stop the car, put it in park, get out and there. He was just chilling out in the car," said Benjamin.
Thankfully, no one was hurt, and there was only minor damage to Benjamin's cruiser. As for the perp, he's gone with the wind.
"We rolled down the passenger side window, and after about 45 minutes, he flew out," said Benjamin.
Officer Benjamin managed to walk away with just minor scratches. He went to the hospital to get checked out and was given a tetanus shot and some antibiotics, just in case. After all that, he returned to work the rest of his shift. The only casualty in that wild attack? Officer Benjamin's uniform.