Case 42: State Tropper Sighting ‑ Condon Report

North Central, Fall l'année d'avant

Investigators : CraigCraig, Roy F., Ahrens, staff


A state trooper, on duty since 5 p.m., was cruising the outskirts of his small midwestern town alone at 2:30 a.m. He reported a saucer-like object landed on or hovered over, the highway 40 ft. in front of him. The object departed straight upward at high speed. The trooper could not account for a 20-min. period during which he assumed he must have been near the UFO. No evidence was found that a physical object had been present as claimed. Psychological assessment of the trooper, carried out with his approval and cooperation, also failed to provide evidence that the reported object was physically real.


A state trooper, cruising alone about 2:30 a.m. in his squad car, had a feeling of uneasiness that something unusual was nearby. At 1:00 a.m. and at about 1:35 a.m. he had checked the cattle at the local sale barn, and found them behaving strangely -- bawling and kicking the chutes. After 2:00 a.m. he was checking various facilities along Highway A, and near its intersection with Highway B noticed red lights to his right, which he thought were perhaps on a truck stopped on Highway B. He passed the intersection, then turned around and returned to B, to check the presumed truck. The patrolman switched his headlights to bright and stopped the police car as his headlights struck the source of red light, that he thought was some 40 ft. ahead (later measured to be 150 ft.). The red lights were blinking. They appeared now to be shining from windows of a saucer-shaped object, hovering 6 - 8 ft. above the highway, tilted at an angle of about 15° from the horizontal. The object glowed brilliantly, and started rising, emitting a siren-like sound, the trooper reported. It rose gradually, with some side-wise fluttering, and emitted a flame-colored material from its under side. With his head out the open car door, the trooper said he watched the object move nearly overhead, then move upward rapidly, shooting out of sight. After a quick check of the site by flashlight, he returned directly to the troop barracks, where he was surprised to find the time to be 3:00 a.m. As he turned his car around on Highway A, he had noticed that the time was 2:30 a.m. and it seemed to him that no more than ten minutes could have elapsed before he reached the troop barracks. He felt that perhaps he had not been conscious during a period of approximately 20 min. while he was observing the UFO. He had a feeling of paralysis at the time, and felt strange, weak, sick, and nervous when he returned to the troop barracks, according to his report.

In describing the object later, the trooper said it had a row of oval portholes around its periphery, each port about two feet across. The light was glowing from inside the object. He could see nothing through the red-lighted ports as the lights blinked off except a black line moving up and down. Below the portholes, he described a cat-walk around the object. The surface of the object appeared to him like polished aluminum, and was quite bright in reflected light. The night was reported to be clear, calm, and moonless.


His superior officer declared that the trooper was dependable and truthful. His chief was convinced that this report of an UFO sighting was not the result of hallucination or dishonesty. He had checked the area the next morning. Among ordinary litter beside the road, beneath the point that the trooper said the object hovered he found a small piece of metallic-appearing material which he did not recognize. This material, less than one centimeter long and paper thin, was offered as possible residue left by the UFO. The chip of material was black on one side, while the other surface had the bright appearance of aluminum paint. A portion of this material was analyzed semi-quantitatively. Its major constituents were iron and silicon. Since the relation of the material to the reported UFO was so tenuous, no further effort was made to determine its specific origin, for it could plausibly be accounted for in terms of ordinary corroded earthly waste.

The site area was checked for radioactivity, no evidence of which was found. No other evidence that an unusual object had landed on or hovered over the site was found.

His superior officer said the trooper had been given a polygraph examination at the trooper's request by an experienced operator at an official agency. The polygraph reportedly showed no indications that the UFO report was other than truthful.

The trooper said he had served with the U. S. Marines. With his approval, a series of psychological assessment tests were administered by project personnel and psychologists at the University of Colorado Center for Student Life Programs. In addition, a test utilizing partial hypnotic techniques was conducted by Dr. R. Leo SprinkleSprinkle, Ronald Leo, Professeur de Psychologie à l'Université du Wyoming. The latter test was conducted in an effort to determine whether or not hypnotic techniques might have value in developing otherwise inaccessible information about UFOs. During this session, new information was added to the trooper's account of his UFO experience; however the authenticity of the reported experience remained unestablished [was left in question]. Dr. Sprinkle expressed the opinion that the trooper believed in the reality of the events he described.

Tests administered were the Rorschach, Thematic Apperception Test, Sentence Completion, Word Association, Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale, and Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. Results of these tests were evaluated by Mr. R. Dean Land, Counselor, and Dr. Robert H. Fenner, Assistant Director for Clinical Services, of the University of Colorado Center.


Evaluation of psychological assessment tests, the lack of any evidence, and interviews with the patrolman, left project staff with no confidence that the trooper's reported UFO experience was physically real.