A Florida man was arrested for kicking an iguana to death.
We recently shared the regulations for legal iguana hunting in Florida just last week and kicking iguanas to death is not considered a legal method of take.
However, the man is attempting to claim self-defense and argue that the iguana attacked him first. In fact, he’s trying to invoke Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law as his defense.
According to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, witnesses claim that PJ Patterson helped the iguana cross the street just moments before it viciously attacked him.
The incident took place back in September, however charges and Patterson’s defense were just officially processed. Patterson was charged with animal cruelty after witnesses saw him stomp the iguana to death with his feet. He claims that the lizard resorted to violence first and the 3-foot lizard made him fear for his life.
Patterson’s lawyers filed a report that indicates the vicious animal got the best of him and savagely bit his right arm. He reportedly needed 22 staples to close the gash on his right arm.
Apparently after he helped the iguana cross the road, onlookers began to surround the lizard as it became more and more agitated. Patterson attempted to move the lizard to a less crowded area when it bit him. After several failed attempts at catching the iguana, Patterson eventually kicked it as far as he could.
Authorities say there is video evidence of Patterson dragging the iguana by the tail, tormenting it, then stepping on it. After the iguana again bit him, he reportedly began viciously striking the animal until it was left incapacitated.
His lawyer claims that the use of force was reasonable under the circumstances.
This is the first time in the history of the United States that anyone has attempted to use a stand-your-ground defense against an iguana.