Drunk Attacks Cops With His Five Foot Carpet Python

By Will Godfrey 10/12/11

Police dealing with a car crash in Australia were surprised to be faced with an aggressive drunk brandishing a large snake.

Snake's alive. Photo via

A heavy drinker was fined A$700 by an Australian court this week for waging war on cops with some unorthodox live weaponry. Last month, police were dealing with the scene of a car-crash in Maroochydore, on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, which involved three vehicles. But 29-year-old local Shane Hobbs didn't own any of them—or have any other apparent reason to get involved. Nevertheless, Hobbs—described by the Australian media as a "heavyset New Zealander"—arrived from nowhere to do battle with the police officers in almost biblical style: barefoot, drunk, and with a five-foot Murray Darling carpet python coiled around his shoulders. He waved his intimidating pet in the faces of onlookers and yelled expletives at the officers. And then—in what must have been an alarming moment—he attempted to sling his unwilling accomplice in through the open window of a parked cop car and on to the lap of the officer sitting inside. Whether the reptile intervened at this point by clinging to Hobbs for dear life is unknown, but the intoxicated Antipodean eventually strode off with the potential projectile still draped across his shoulders. Hobbs pleaded guilty at Maroochydore Magistrates Court to assaulting police, obstructing police and being a public nuisance. Murray Darling carpet pythons typically grow to around eight feet in length and, as constrictors, are non-venomous. Hobbs admitted he had his own poison inside him at the time of his rampage. It's recently been a bad time for drunks and pythons to mix—not that there's ever a good one. A 54-year-old Californian named David Senk was arrested, also last month, for taking a bite out of a three-foot specimen while on a binge. The snake is reported to be in recovery, and it's only to be hoped that the same can now be said of Senk, who acknowledged he had a drinking problem.

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Will Godfrey is the former editor-in-chief of TheFix. He was also the founding editor-in-chief of Substance.com, and previously co-founded a magazine for prisoners in London. His work has appeared in Salon, Pacific Standard, AlterNet and The Nation among others. He is currently the Executive Director at FILTER. You can find Will on Linkedin and Twitter.