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February 2008


5 February 2008

Police in York, Pennsylvania, said that homeless man Brian Waltermyer walked into a bank and handed a teller a note demanding money. When the teller told the 33-year-old Waltermyer to remove his hood, he complied. The surveillance camera footage allowed officers to recognise his face, and tellers picked him out in a photo lineup. He has been arrested.

A 21-year-old woman in West Jordan, Utah, heard a burglar break a window, so she grabbed her telephone and hid in a closet to call the police. While searching for valuables, the woman said, one of the men looked in the closet, 'rummaging around, hitting my leg and hitting my boots. If he would have just looked up, he would have seen me.' As police surrounded the house, one of the men hid in the closet himself. 'He didn't even realise I was standing there. He was smashing me up against the wall. [...] I'm surprised he didn't hear the phone,' she said. When she heard officers in the room, she leapt from the closet and pointed out the 'really confused' burglar. Adam Cloward, Jake Hampton, and Tony Cone were arrested.

An 11-year-old boy in LaPlace, Louisiana, ordered $35 in takeaway pizza and other food. When the delivery driver arrived at his home, the boy produced a handgun rather than payment. Thus, the delivery driver let him walk away with the food. Sheriff's Office spokesman Mike Tregre said that an anonymous tip led to the boy, who was charged with armed robbery. The boy's mother said she had thought her son was in school at the time. His explanation for the crime, according to Tregre, was that he was hungry.

A cat-owner in Austin, Texas, noticed her cat sticking its head into a gap between the pantry and ceiling of her home. A friend reached into the gap and found DVDs containing child pornography. Police and the staff at the apartment complex tracked the DVDs to previous tenant Luis Jimenez, 24.

An inspector with the New Mexico Motor Transportation Division opened a truck's rear doors to make sure the beauty products within were properly secured. They weren't. A box containing about 23 kilos of marijuana fell out, hitting him on the head. Inside were 49 more boxes fitting the same description. It is unknown yet whether the truck's driver is to be charged.

A woman in Washington, Pennsylvania, was upset when her 10-year-old grandson admitted to adding lamp oil and household cleaner to the family's drinks. Therefore, the woman, 51-year-old Rhonda Lehman, locked her charge in a faeces-filled dog crate and rang the county mental health office to say that she'd bury the boy alive in her back yard if someone didn't collect him. The boy later explained that he'd been altering the drinks because 'he was angry because he didn't get to go on a trip' last year, according to police officer James Markley.
Lehman was charged with child endangerment and terroristic threats. The boy's 24-year-old brother was charged with assault and harassment for punching him. Markley said that, when asked why he would punch a 10-year-old boy in the eye, the brother said: 'It's better than what I wanted to do to him.'

According to Japan's Mainichi Shimbun, Takayuki Yamamoto, a teacher at Hamura Nishi elementary school, approached a group of pupils from another school and asked what they were doing in his schoolyard. The 26-year-old Yamamoto produced a knife and demanded that six of the boys remove their trousers and underpants. He kept some of the underwear, some cash, and two mobile telephones, later using one of the mobiles to place prank calls to the home of one of the schoolboys.
Yamamoto was caught with ease because he left his glasses in the schoolyard.

Russia's Itar-Tass news agency reported that 17 Russian tourists visiting the spa town of Yessentuki received more than expected when a nurse administered their enemas. Instead of water, she used hydrogen peroxide. The health resort explained that water and the disinfectant look the same. The tourists were treated in hospital.

A tornado demolished Ann Beam's home in Wheatland, Wisconsin on 7 January. A couple of weeks later, Time Warner Cable billed her $2000 for damaged cable boxes and remote controls. When the incredulous Beam rang them, they advised her to submit the bill to her insurance company. As the equipment was nine years old, the insurance company would not pay anywhere near the amount billed.
After Beam contacted the media and it was discovered that the cable company had billed several other tornado victims similarly, company spokeswoman Celeste Flynn said that Beam's case was a misunderstanding and that 'All they will need to do is call, and we will take the equipment off their account.'

Stafford Crown Court found 28-year-old Kate Knight guilty of attempted murder. This had something to do with the antifreeze in the wedding anniversary curry and red wine she'd fed husband Lee, and her telling, for example, neighbour Sarah Johnson of her plans. Johnson said: 'She had done it the previous night [as well] and he had complained about the tinny taste in his mouth.' The goal was to collect insurance money to pay off debts she had amassed without Lee's knowledge.
Of Lee Knight's medical problems - he is deaf and blind and has irreversible kidney damage - Kate said they are the result of his drinking at least four litres of super-strength lager daily.

Michigan's Frank Kozumplik decided to go to his local off-licence in a snowstorm after his wife had left for work. Since she had taken the car, he drove his John Deere lawnmower down the centre of the street toward the bottles of wine he wanted, about three kilometres away. Officers found the 49-year-old Kozumplik on his way home after he had emptied two of the six bottles. He was arrested for drunken driving, and the mower was confiscated.

An eight-year-old Portsmouth boy's grandmother took him to Copnor Fire Station to have his handcuffs removed. According to firefighter Dan French, the 'hardened steel' handcuffs required the attention of industrial metal-cutters. French said that 'his grandmother said he'd found the cuffs in his mother's bedroom. She immediately realised what she'd said and put her hand over her mouth. It's beyond my wildest imagination why someone would keep handcuffs in their bedroom!'

24 February 2008

Stockholm's appeals court has ordered kennel owner Anette Sjöholm to pay a fine of the equivalent of 2300 euros for discrimination. She had refused to sell a puppy to Smila Bergström. When conversation revealed that Bergström lived with another woman, Sjöholm refused to complete the sale, explaining that she didn't trust homosexuals and that she'd read that transvestites sexually abuse animals.

A 26-year-old man in Japan bought a car in an Internet auction. It was promptly stolen. He then noticed that it had been put up for auction again. So, he placed the winning bid for it, again, and made sure investigators were on hand for the hand-over of the car. Officers arrested three men, who had used the GPS tracking system in the car to locate and re-steal it. Accused of the theft are company executive Hiroaki Yasumatsu, 30, and his underlings Takashi Shimizu and Takashi Murata.

A woman in Germany who auctioned off her sexual favours six times online has been granted the right to know who the winners were. A court spokesman in Stuttgart explained that the woman had become pregnant and knew the men only by their Internet monikers. The operator of the site hosting the auctions, Doomsoft.de, had refused to divulge this information, but the court decided that privacy considerations were outweighed by the child's right to know the identity of its father. Now the woman simply has to get the men to donate more genetic material for paternity tests.

Deputy Gayle Cadiz was at an Orlando, Florida, shopping centre when an Office Depot employee pointed out a man who was making off with a $3 floor mat. Cadiz confronted the man, 34-year-old Malik Stephenson, and he beat her into unconsciousness then went home. A SWAT team and snipers soon set up outside his home. A shot was fired from the front door and another from the garage door, but Stephenson was taken into custody without further incident, as was his wife, who is thought to have been the getaway driver.

An employee at the Kitsap Credit Union in Bremerton, Washington, found an unexpected addition to a deposit made via an automated teller machine. Along with the money in the deposit envelope was a bag of methamphetamine. Police decided to check on the account and contacted its 18-year-old owner, who indicated that she had been using the drug and might have accidentally included the bag when taking money from her back pocket for deposit.

Steve Gibson, 42, is allowed to smoke marijuana for pain control, but not everywhere. The owner of his pub, Gator Ted's Tap & Grill, repeatedly demanded that Gibson stand 100 feet from the door before lighting a joint, while smokers of plain old tobacco need stand only 10 feet away. Taking his case to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, Gibson says: 'They're out there killing themselves (with cigarettes) and I'm taking medicine. If I have to be 100 feet away from everybody else's property, I'd be pretty much grounded to my house.'

Meanwhile, a tavern in Minnesota is letting people smoke inside, despite a state law banning smoking in bars. Since the law makes an exception for theatrical performances, the owners of Barnacle's Resort decided to make every Saturday night a theatre evening. Customers pay $1 for an 'ACT NOW!' button and proceedings in the bar are transformed into theatre and the cigarettes into props.


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