Police Dispatch

Confused but Not Spineless

San Xavier Beat

March 12, 1:43 a.m.

A hallucinating man covered in cactus spines awoke a quiet family while trying to escape some (likely imaginary) people chasing him, according to a Pima County Sheriff's Department report.

The family told sheriff's deputies they were recently awoken by a strange man banging loudly on the side of their house, with no sign of him stopping.

Deputies found him still in the reportee's yard—completely covered in cactus spines, from his forehead to his legs. He "had snot coming out of his nose and all the way down his chin. ... (and) his mouth appeared to be foaming at the corners."

Slightly incoherently, the man told deputies that after his car had gotten stuck in a ditch nearby, six people "started chasing him for no reason," one of whom had a shotgun and ran after him through the desert for five miles.

Since the subject had warrants already out for his arrest, deputies were prepared to jail him. But he had so many cactus spines in his body that they first called paramedics, who recommended hospitalization so they could remove the spines.

After the spine removal, medical staff recommended he stay in their care for several more hours, so law enforcement decided not to jail him. After he signed a citation for disturbing the peace, he was released to the hospital.

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