The Upside Down Under
Criminal Koalas


Public indecency, stalking and fleeing from police - Queensland koalas have some serious questions to answer after several incidents were reported by police and members of the public

Pole Dancing without a Permit

The most serious allegations came on September 10, when police in the Townsville suburb of Stuart in north Queensland allege a koala, which went by the name of Fernando, gave officers a pole dancing display in the middle of a busy road.

Criminal Koalas in Queensland?
Townsville police were confronted by a pole-dancing koala.Photo: Queensland Police Service

Sergeant Julie Cooke wrote in an online account of the incident that officers were "concerned for the koala’s safety" but the animal was "very stubborn and reluctant to move on".

"But when police pumped the new Taylor Swift song through the radio he showed his distaste and ditched the pole dancing lesson," Sergeant Cooke wrote.

In Brisbane, police were also forced to pursue a koala on August 21, after it fled from officers into thick bushland.


According to Sergeant Darnielle Fioriti, Holland Park officers were hunting "a different kind of offender" off Logan Road in Mount Gravatt when they saw a koala jaywalking in front of them.

Police will allege the animal showed a "blatant disregard for authority" before it was clipped by a car and staggered off into nearby bushland.

Criminal Koala

Sgt Fioriti stated that officers...

"took off in hot pursuit ... armed with flashlights"

and a short time later the koala was found injured and dazed.

The furry friend, given the name Kenny, spent the dash to Manly 24 Hour Animal Hospital clinging to the headrest in the back seat.

Car Theft

Recently, the Australian Times reported that  a koala thought he could make a clean getaway with a Land Rover near Maude in Victoria on Monday.  The theft was foiled by 15-year-old Sam Box, when the teen hopped off the school bus at his family's farm and caught the koala in the act:

Criminal Koalas
License and registration please.

Sam told Australia's 9 News that he and his father, Michael, often see koalas on their property, though finding one in their car was a first.

"[The koala] was checking me out as much as I was checking him out,” Sam reported. “I opened the door and he just got out and walked away.”

Koalas are super common in this part of Australia, but usually they don't attempt to reenact scenes from Gone in Sixty Seconds. Sam and his dad made a little bit of noise, in hopes that this wannabe felon would abandon his grand theft auto plans and go away. The koala wasn't afraid, but in the end he gave up: When Sam opened the car door, the koala strutted away into the bush, free to continue on his crime spree.

Public brawling

Turns out, koalas can be pretty terrifying when it's mating season.

In this video uploaded by Alicia Alexander, two koalas are battling it out in an epic showdown as they try to stake their territory. The crying and yelping that follow will surely send chills down your spine -- and break your heart just a little bit.

The behaviour is said to be quite common this time of year, with unwanted males spurned by females by a succession of loud screams.

There's good news, though: apparently, the little koala won in the end, claiming the tree as its own by nightfall.

The police weren't called in on this one!

Breaking and entering

Last year, Nikki Erickson told of a gray and fuzzy intruder that had walked in through an open door and managed to climb up a pole inside her home in South East Queensland, Australia.

But talented as the little one might be, Erickson realized the koala did not belong in her home, and told HuffPost she contacted Queensland’s Daisy Hill Conservation Park. Rescuers, who came out to retrieve the animal for release back into the wild, determined the koala was a female, and Erickson nicknamed her “Larissa.”

“They made sure she was ok and in good condition, then released her,” Erickson said. “They sent me an email the following day to let me know.”

Koala is found inside a house trying to climb a Stripper Pole. After this video was taken the homeowner contacted a koala conservation team that relocated her to safety.


Fernando the Koala gives some pole dancing tips to Stuart Police

Furry natives of Holland Park

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