It may not have been a Christmas miracle, but it certainly was a surprise.
When Indiana State Police Master Trooper Don Farris pulled an Indianapolis man over to the side of Interstate 74 for a traffic violation Thursday, the violation itself wasn’t what stood out — what stood out was the cargo Christopher Hansen was hauling across the state in the back of his big white van, police said in a news release.
After the trooper let Hansen off with just a warning, police said that Hansen made the officer an unusual offer: Want to see the reindeer in the back of my van?
Hansen wasn’t bluffing, either. When Farris took a look in the back of the 2014 Dodge, he saw the adult reindeer in the back of the vehicle for himself, police said.
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Naturally, Farris got a couple pictures to prove it to any non-believers.
“You just never know what will transpire during a traffic stop along our highways,” Sgt. Joe Watts, an Indiana State Police spokesman, said in a statement.
Hansen told the trooper that he was en route to Attica, Indiana at the time to put on a show for elementary school students, police said. Hansen puts on the shows as a part of a business, Silly Safaris Shows, Inc., which is based in Indianapolis.
Silly Safaris provides more than 3,000 live, conservation-inspiring animal shows across the country every year, according to the company’s website.
No word on why Hansen wasn’t operating a sleigh, though.