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People In Alabama Neighbourhood Once Thought They'd Spotted A Leprechaun

Jake Massey

| Last updated 

People In Alabama Neighbourhood Once Thought They'd Spotted A Leprechaun

Featured Image Credit: NBC 15

It's an extra special St Patrick's Day this year, because it marks 15 years since people in an Alabama neighbourhood thought they'd spotted a leprechaun. Watch a local news report from 2006 here:


Yes, the famous figure of Irish folklore decided to rock up in a tree in the Crichton neighbourhood of Mobile, near Toulminville - or so residents thought.

NBC reporter Brian Johnson had no idea he would be breaking news that would be looked back on 15 years later when he went to see what a large gathering was about on 14 March 2006.

He said 'things sort of snowballed' after he and the crew arrived, with numerous people claiming to have spotted the leprechaun.

One eye-witness even drew up an adorably terrible sketch of the mythical creature, which was subsequently auctioned off on eBay after the story went viral, bringing in around $1,000 for charity, according to WPMI-TV.

Resident Shun Thomas subsequently claimed he was the first to discover the leprechaun while supping on a beer - Lord knows how strong it was.

Speaking to AL.com in 2015, he said: "Halfway through one beer, I'm looking through this tree here and I could see this image.

"I'm seeing this image, so I do several double takes and he's still there. So I finally mentioned it."

Shun told his brother, cousin and friend to look - and lo and behold, they all saw it too.

He described it as a 'metamorphosis', with the mouth or nose appearing first, followed by the rest of its face.

Fancy spotting this in a tree in Alabama. Credit: PA
Fancy spotting this in a tree in Alabama. Credit: PA

Shun said this happened for about a week before it was reported on, at which point the whole thing blew up. But for him, the coverage was disappointing, with the story becoming a bit of a light-hearted distraction, rather than the centre of any sort of serious investigation.

He said: "It just looked like a leprechaun to me. It was only an image from the chin to the top hat but that's what I thought about.

"For me, it became frustrating because of the reports. It was more like, the people of Crichton discovered this and it became a joke when it wasn't at all.

"No one ever came, like you did today, saying, 'I want to get to the bottom of this.'"

However, a year before this interview, The Bob and Dan Show actually did try and get to the bottom of it, and the investigation concluded it was a local little person known by the unfortunate nickname of 'Midget Sean', pulling a prank.

How that fits with Shun's metamorphosis description is a bit of a mystery though. All I know is I want whatever he's drinking.

Topics: Funny, US News, Weird

Jake Massey
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