A small crocodile became an unwilling bystander to a clash between two high schools in Jakarta, where, luckily, its predatory instincts were not exploited for violence.
Students from the two schools brawled in Duren Sawit, East Jakarta on Sunday afternoon. Footage from the violent clash shared by community account @warungjurnalis showed the reptilian being carried around by one of the brawling students upon their arrest by the police.
To be clear, police said the crocodile was not wielded as a weapon like one would a Pokemon. Instead, it belonged to a vocational high school (SMK) that specializes in animal care education, and the student was assigned with caring for the croc at home.
“He did not expect that there would be a brawl with another school when he was taking the crocodile [home],” Duren Sawit Police Chief M Marbun said yesterday.
Police confiscated the croc and handed it over to the East Jakarta Environment Agency.
Eleven students were apprehended and were made to sign statements promising that they would not partake in inter-school brawls in the future.
While teenagers around the world get into fights, in Indonesia and especially around Jakarta there is a culture of school rivalries leading to massive ritualistic brawls called tawuran that can involve dozens of participants and can often turn deadly. In a documentary by Al-Jazeera, some of the children interviewed said that brawling is a rite of passage to manhood, while one said that they fight each other “for fun.”