A driver in Germany may have the Holy Spirit to thank for avoiding a speeding ticket of €105 (£93).
Police in Viersen shared a picture of a car snapped by one of its cameras driving at 54km/ph (33mph) on a 30km/ph (18mph) road, but the driver’s face is obscured by a passing dove.
As the car but not the driver could be identified, they spared the motorist a fine, saying it was “thanks to the feathered guardian angel with apparently carefully spread wings”.
The police force said in a post on Facebook: “The Holy Ghost may have thought something of it when he placed his symbol in an exposed spot on May 21.
“We have understood the sign and leave the speeder in peace this time.
“However, we associate with it the hope that the protected speeder understands this ‘hint from above’ as well and drives appropriately in the future.”
Officers were referencing appearances of the Holy Spirit as a dove in the Bible, in which one descended on Jesus after he had been baptised by John the Baptist.
The officers ended the statement, saying: “Actually, the pigeon would have earned a fine, because she was too fast on the way. But since we do not know where she had to be punctually at Pentecost, we allow grace to prevail here too.”
The post won the police force some fans on Facebook, and one person used a dove emoji to block their own face on their parking fine, asking if they could be let off too.
One suggested the driver was vegan and that their animal friends had come to their rescue, while another said they had enough faith in the police force to identify the bird and bring it to court for obstruction.