Idiots everywhere were taken in over the weekend by the irresistible story of a Navy petty officer who was too drunk to turn off the anti-DUI system on his car, so he grabbed a raccoon from a nearby park and squeezed some of its tiny, feral breath into the breathalyzer. The car started, according to the incident report, and the raccoon, rendered unconscious by the Navy man’s grip, lay on the vehicle’s floor. Of course the raccoon woke up, and of course it attacked the drunken driver, causing him to careen into a fence and end up in an in-ground swimming pool.

The unbelievable tale seems to have begun on Imgur and Reddit, and spread further after being picked up by a local CBS website and tweeted by the U.K.’s Telegraph. It gathered steam mostly thanks to its formatting: It’s written like an official incident report from Camp Pendleton in San Diego, complete with some acronym soup like “SITREP” and “POV” (for privately-owned vehicle).

But as much as I wish it were true, a public affairs officer from base says it’s totally bogus.

“I called police records, and while they were highly entertained, they confirmed [the story] is absolutely a hoax,” 1st. Lt. Savannah Frank told the San Diego Union-Tribune.

One clue was the incident number on the post, which, Frank told the Union-Tribune, doesn’t match the numbering system actually used on the base. Records officials at Pendleton checked anyway, just to be sure, and couldn’t find any record of a raccoon being used to start a vehicle.

But that doesn’t mean no such record will ever exist. You know some dumbass is going to try this, just to see if it’s possible.

CBS has since updated its story to acknowledge the hoax. The Telegraph deleted its tweet.

[h/t San Diego Union-Tribune, Photo: Joshua Pitcock/Flickr]