‘Tis the Season: Routine Traffic Stop Reveals a Reindeer as a Passenger

Indiana State Police

Reindeer are uncommon in Indiana, according to police.

What was supposed to be a routine traffic stop for one Indiana State Trooper turned into a Christmas surprise as a reindeer was found riding along with the driver who was pulled over. 

On Thursday, Master Trooper Don Farris pulled over a 2014 Dodge van for a minor traffic violation and the driver, identified as Indianapolis resident Christopher T. Hansen, spoke to the cop and asked if he wanted to see the reindeer he was carrying. 

The cop, who was both surprised and curious, discovered that Hansen has a business called Silly Safaris, Inc., of Indianapolis, and was on his way to put on a show at an elementary school before he was pulled over on Interstate 74. 

Once Trooper Farris looked into the back of the van, he found was a real-life reindeer looking back at him, much to his delight.

Farris let Hansen off with a warning and quickly contacted his public information officer, Sgt. Joe Watts, with the news. 

“Reindeer are uncommon in Indiana,” Sgt. Watts told InsideEdition.com. “It is a rare occurrence to see something like this." 

Sgt. Watts explained that he put out the press release to highlight a “cheerful event” involving law enforcement, unlike the seemingly regular crime stories. 

Watts added that Farris “wanted to get a lighthearted Christmas story up” and the story has become a hit on social media just in time for the holidays.