You may have noticed my fondness for stories emanating from the US about strange human behaviour with animals. The assault on the bar with a dead groundhog was one of the first.

Then we had the man gettin’ jiggy with it, the it being his wife’s dog. The lunatic leaping into the alligator enclosure at the zoo. The other nutter sexually assaulting an alligator because it had ‘annoyed’ him. My mate’s dad who blew up a grizzly with dynamite. All good stories, but this one takes the biscuit.

I cannot express too strongly my gratitude to the columnist Caitlin Moran for alerting me to this tale from the police report of an incident in Camp Pendleton, San Diego, California. I know San Diego is a bit of a mad place to live. They like my short stories a lot there, and that speaks volumes for the city. But this is inspired madness.

Male, navy enlisted first class petty officer, exited a bar, intoxicated. In an attempt to drive a POV equipped with a breathalysed interlock system, suspect was too intoxicated to start the vehicle, so he went into a park where he captured a raccoon rummaging in a trash receptacle.

I think you’ll agree that things are taking a somewhat surreal turn here.

Individual utilised the raccoon to blow into the interlock system successfully – but the raccoon became unconscious from being squeezed

Well, you can see how that might happen if a pissed bloke is trying to use a raccoon to start his car, can’t you? It’s fraught with problems.

and was discarded on the floorboard of the vehicle until a short time later – when the raccoon regained consciousness and began to attack the suspect while driving,

I can see it might have been a bit miffed. I would have been, had I been the raccoon in question.

causing the vehicle to crash into a residential fence.

Funny enough, but just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, it did.

The vehicle came to a stop in a swimming pool.

Eat your heart out any rockstars. It’s been done before by Keith Moon, and now it’s been done even better by a raccoon-squeezing drunk. Mind you, for all I know Keith Moon may have squeezed a few raccoons.

The suspect sustained numerous scratches and bite-marks.

No kidding! Who ever would have thought it?

That’s something to tell his grandchildren about, isn’t it?