Waiters and waitresses at a cafe in Port St. Lucie, Fla., got a shock when a customer moseyed in on all fours and started hissing at them.
The ornery patron at Cafe Creme was a 4 1/2-foot alligator that was apparently taking refuge from the dry, scorching heat, The Palm Beach Post reported.
Waitress Valerie Fox saw the reptile behind a back counter when she went to get coffee for some diners, according to the Post.
"He was standing there and he hissed, and I just freaked out," Fox, 47, told the newspaper.
Fox said she darted outside to call 911. Cops arrived on the scene with local animal control officers, who caught the gator, transported it to the Savannas Preserve State Park (search) and let it go, according to Port St. Lucie police.
The gator, which may have come from the St. Lucie River, was likely looking for some respite from the heat and entered the restaurant through a back door when it was ajar, the Post reported police as saying.
Though Fox told the newspaper she was trembling after coming face-to-face with the animal, others at the cafe got a laugh out of the incident. Customers who arrived at the restaurant were told to stay outside until the reptile had been hauled away.
"They wanted to come in and give the alligator chicken," Fox told the Post.
Fox said she's glad the gator was taken back to the wild.
"I think it's really great," she said. "I mean, you just can' t let him walk back out the door."
Dog Owner to Rottweiler: Bite the Mailman!
Maybe a man who wound up behind bars for telling his pet Rottweiler (search) to bite the postman had gotten an unwanted letter that day.
No matter what his motive, Armindo Gomes, 67, was arrested in Bridgeport, Conn., Tuesday and charged with assault and other offenses for commanding his dog to attack a U.S. Postal Service carrier, the Associated Press reported.
An off-duty city cop heard Gomes egging his dog on as the postman was delivering mail just after 2:30 p.m.
"She heard (Gomes) going, 'Sic him, sic him, sic him,'" said Bridgeport police Sgt. Raymond Masek of the officer.
Gomes was charged with second-degree assault, breach of peace and second-degree reckless endangerment.
The mailman, whose name hasn't been released, tried to flee but the Rottweiler scaled a fence and sank its teeth into his leg, according to the Connecticut Post. When the carrier screamed for help, the off-duty policewoman ordered Gomes to call off the dog.
Masek said the officer shot the dog with her service weapon. The dog ran, but was caught nearby. The animal was being treated at a veterinary hospital for a wound to its hindquarters.
Masek said it wasn't clear why Gomes allegedly ordered the dog to go after the carrier.
Police are investigating whether the off-duty officer violated any policies.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
One Foot in the Grave
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — Hazel Felton did not have a near-death experience over the weekend, but she did have one foot in the grave — literally.
Felton was cleaning up around family graves Sunday at Kenai Cemetery when her dog Boo Boo's leash became entangled in a wooden cross beside a nearby headstone.
When she stepped onto the grave to get a better angle to free the terrier's leash, the ground collapsed under her foot.
"I put one leg in past my hip bone. That's about 34 inches," Felton said.
Planting her foot nearly a yard deep in an old grave understandably disturbed Felton, and she got herself out fast.
"I just shot outta there like a light," she said. "It just creeped me out."
Equally creepy for Felton is the fact she was named after the daughter of the man whose grave she fell into.
Warder Showalter's daughter Hazel, who died shortly before Felton was born, was a good friend of Felton's mother.
Felton, who was uninjured in the mishap, called the Showalter family to let them know what happened. After hearing the story, Adeline Chaffin found humor in the incident.
"I ask Hazel, 'Were you playing footsy with my dad?'" Chaffin said.
Bob Frates, director of the Division of Parks and Recreation, which maintains the cemetery, has never had a grave collapse before.
Man Showers Naked at Car Wash
WOODSTOCK, Ontario (AP) — A 39-year-old man was arrested after stripping off his clothes and entering a car wash for an impromptu shower.
Police say a cab stopped to fill up at a gas station about 10 p.m. Tuesday when the passenger from Thamesford, Ontario, got out and decided to have a wash before going home, the Woodstock Sentinel-Review reported.
Police found the man naked and intoxicated.
He has been charged with being intoxicated in a public place.
The man's name wasn't released.
SEWICKLEY, Pa. (AP) — Students and staff at a high school are being criticized for their choice of prom favors — shot glasses for the boys and champagne flutes for the girls.
Ohio Township Police Chief Norbert Miklos was at a loss to explain the choice by students of Avonworth Senior High School (search), especially because police had staged a mock car crash days before last week's prom to drive home the dangers of underage drinking.
"I don't think it's the brightest thing," Miklos said. "It wouldn't have been my choice."
Parent Gloria Newman didn't know about the favors until she saw one of the champagne glasses, imprinted with the date of the prom, in her daughter's room the morning after.
"They spent the whole week making children aware of the dangers of alcohol. Then this contradictory message came through in the party favors," Newman said.
Principal Margaret Boden (search) said students and the prom's sponsor didn't get her approval before ordering the favors, and by the time she found out it was too late to switch to other items.
Boden said she would have taken "just as much flak" had she stopped the favors from being distributed.
"I do understand the mixed message it does send. It was probably not the best choice," Boden said.
The glasses were the cheapest favors the students could find. She said students were budget-conscious because they wanted to donate money to a foundation in the memory of the late wife of a popular school counselor.
Compiled by Foxnews.com's Catherine Donaldson-Evans.
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