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January 2004

8 January 2004

In a shop in Fort Myers, Florida, Tammi Edwards selected four shirts and handed the clothing to her 11-year-old daughter. She told the girl to stuff the shirts into a handbag, according to police spokeswoman Kara Winton. The 29-year-old Edwards apparently intended the four shirts, valued at $57, to be the girl's Christmas present. The girl, who doesn't live with her mother, will probably be referred to a juvenile misdemeanour programme.

In Kansas City, Missouri, Mary Beth Byers, 37, was trying to climb over her neighbour's wrought iron fence when she became impaled on one of its spikes. Her husband heard her screaming and helped support her weight as paramedics sped to the scene. Byers explained that she was scaling the fence so she could return some garage sale items to her neighbour. Earlier in the day, the neighbour reported to police that her house had been burgled. An investigation is under way.

Khater Bou-Anton, a 19-year-old from Sydney, Australia, allegedly raped a 16-year-old girl. His father, plumber Chouaki Bou-Anton, contacted 'a person known to police', paying him 3,000 Australian dollars and promising to pay about seven times that sum upon the death of the girl. The hit man, working undercover, made video and audio recordings of the meeting. The plumber's son was also charged with solicitation of murder for his role in the affair.

Effie Goodson of Holdenville, Oklahoma, convinced her husband that she was pregnant, and a baby shower was held for her. When her expected delivery date neared, the 37-year-old Goodson spent some time in a casino with friend Carolyn Simpson, 21, who was six months pregnant. Authorities say she then cut the foetus from Simpson's uterus. Simpson's body was later found in a field, with a gunshot wound to the head. Prosecutor Linda Evans said she planned to charge Goodson with the death of both Simpson and the foetus.

It was night in Dade County, Georgia, when a group of men crept up to Eva Hurst's house to discourage her daughter's relationship with a biracial man. They had brought with them a cloth-covered cross soaked in transmission fluid. Shortly after the fire finally took hold in Hurst's yard, one of the men began to worry that the woods nearby were dry enough that Hurst's elderly neighbours could be injured or worse. He rang 911. Six men were later arrested. Hurst said this wasn't a KKK-related cross-burning, saying: 'I was raised around the Klan. The Klan had morals.'

The burglars who stole computers worth the equivalent of $44,000 from a Dalsland, Sweden, paper plant over the Christmas holidays haven't been caught, but the DNA of one of them is on file. Bohusläningen reports that one of the burglars forgot to flush the toilet during the break-in, leaving his DNA in his faeces.
Not so lucky was the Chicago man who posted letters that threatened to kill school children. The letters, sent to at least seven area schools, were traced to registered sex offender Milo L. Farris. The 32-year-old Farris's DNA was found on the flaps of the envelopes, which he licked to seal them.

In Muscle Shoals, Alabama, someone tried to steal a compact disc player from an unlocked car near Southwest Trailer Park. Unable to remove the unit, the perpetrator left. Investigator Seig Mueller said that 'we do have a good lead'; the car's owner, discovering the attempted theft, had found an additional item: a wallet. The name of the wallet's owner is being withheld pending an arrest.

Many airports have signs reminding passengers not to joke about bombs in the airport. Perhaps a passenger aboard a KLM flight from Amsterdam to Rome could have used similar signs aboard the aircraft. Italian news agency Apcom said one man, apparently in a party of three Egyptians, walked toward the cockpit and announced 'This is a hijacking'. He immediately stated that he was joking. Speaking for KLM, Bart Koster said that 'in these times we don't find that kind of joke so funny. We handed them directly over to Italian police, and it's up to them what else will happen, if anything'.

Gordon and Susan Musselwhite of Yealmpton, Devon, are preparing for a court battle with Safeway following their dachshund Muffin's injury, sustained when the animal jumped for a promotional flyer. The couple, suing Safeway for £2,826.65, explain that they arrived home to find Muffin paralysed below the shoulders and saw tooth marks on the Safeway pamphlets sticking through the letterbox. Gordon said there was no need for the letterbox to have been used at all since there was a postbox at the end of their drive. Susan says the pair plan to take the postbox to court with them.

At a Piggly Wiggly store in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, a seven-year-old boy crawled into a game machine via the chute that dispenses cuddly toys. In the glass enclosure from which people usually capture a cuddly toy using a crane-like device, the boy found that his exit was blocked. The fire department's Mark Zittel said the boy's father was using a pay phone less than a metre away 'and he said the next thing he turned around and the kid was in the thing'. Firefighters had a locksmith unlock the door that is used for loading the machine and release the child, who 'desperately had to go to the bathroom'.

Trilane A. Ludwig, 24, of Vancouver, Washington, was arrested after his car was stopped by police on New Year's Day. His mother, Angela R. Beckham, 44, collected his car and wallet from police for safekeeping. Ludwig later asked her to use money from his wallet to bail him out of jail. Beckham handed $500 to a clerk, who noticed that the money was a bad fake. Questioned later by police, Beckham said she was surprised she didn't notice the notes were, among other things, the wrong size. She works as a cashier. She refused to use her own money to bail Ludwig out.
Ludwig said the money was given to him as payment for a car. He appeared unable to recall the buyer's full name or provide a description.

Miami police saw a girl selling heroin on the street and prepared a sting operation. Sometimes, the girl wore her pyjamas for the sales. Other times, she was in her school uniform. The girl, 11 years of age, was apparently obeying the wishes of her mother and a man who might be her stepfather. The girl's mother, Alison Lolanda Davis, 36, was arrested, and various drugs were seized from her home. The girl's seven-year-old sister was removed from the home.
'It was disturbing', said the state police's Sergeant Ruben Rodriguez.

Police were about to leave a house they were combing for three probation violators in Daytona Beach, Florida when they heard someone shout: 'Get me out of here! There's a body!' The voice belonged to Ben Gibson, one of the wanted trio, who were hiding in the attic.
Robyn Cooper, 29, who lives in the building, said she has complained about a foul smell since she moved in three months ago. Police spokesman Sergeant Al Tolley said the medical examiner's office will try to figure out whose remains were in the attic.

Canada's Paul Serup, 43, stopped to help a motorist whose vehicle had rolled over into a ditch along a lonely stretch of British Columbia highway. He heard a voice and then saw a man walk onto the road with a compound bow while looking at him. An arrow struck Serup in the chin, emerging from the side of his neck. He rang emergency services while driving to the nearest town. Wade Gielzecki, 34, has been taken into custody and pleaded not guilty to attempted murder.

Elsewhere in Canada, two members of the Gospel Hall congregation in St. Thomas, Ontario, climbed up to the church roof to perform maintenance work and noticed over two dozen marijuana plants being cultivated up there. Speaking for the town's police force, Chris Herridge said it was 'a little bit of a surprise to find it on the rooftop of a church'. Investigators were not at all confident that they will be able to catch those responsible.

Kern County, California, sheriff's deputies said the convenience store robber took pains to conceal his identity, wearing gloves, a knit hat, and a blue bandanna, which hid his face. After the robbery, he entered the yard of a nearby house and ditched these items, the gun used in the robbery, and his jacket. Still in the pocket of the jacket was its property identification card from the robber's time in jail. With the aid of the date of birth, jail booking number, and photograph on the card, the police were able to identify the perpetrator as 21-year-old James Paul Egan. They found Egan's hair in his kitchen rubbish bin and a shaven-headed Egan in the attic.

'I suppose he may have heard he was wanted for some offence and just wanted to see if the police had anything on him', said Volker Pieper of the police force in Kassel, Germany. A 33-year-old man entered a police station to see if he was on the wanted list. Officers noticed a suspicious lump in the man's ear. Pieper said the lump was a gram of heroin. The drug was confiscated and charges filed.

A South Carolina man got out of bed when he heard noises in the kitchen. He discovered an unfamiliar man eating piece after piece of his fried chicken, so he called the sheriff's office. A sheriff's deputy and a Bluffton police officer took the man, from Ridgeland, into custody. The man said he had just been drinking and that he knew the man who lived in the home. Asked for the resident's name, the trespasser said 'Oh well, you got me', according to the incident report.

While serving in Iraq, Iowa's Robert 'B.J.' Jackson lost his legs in an explosion. His wife, Abby, recounts that, on one of his first nights out with friends since he started learning to walk again, he was refused entry to a nightclub because his black suede Nike trainers didn't comply with the dress code. Abby said both she and her husband told the bouncer 'those were the only shoes he can wear with his prosthetic legs', but it made no difference. Brandon Beveridge, a friend of the Jacksons, said: 'it was very insulting. B.J. pulled up his pants to show them.'
The club's owner, Tom Baldwin, said that 'there's no reason why we would deny entry to someone with prosthetic legs'.

A funeral in South Africa went slightly wrong. Cape Town's Maria Ovis leant down to kiss the body of her deceased nephew, Ivan Charles Distin, and discovered that it was the wrong body. While the family waited for three hours in the Lavis Uniting Reformed Church, Dollie's Funeral Undertakers staff drove to Mamre to find and collect the correct body. Faizel Dollie, who owns the funeral parlour, said it was all a mistake that 'could have happened to anyone'.

A deputy jailer in Kentucky, Clarence Wilson must have wanted a little excitement. Instead of delivering a convicted burglar to jail, he decided to drive about and stop speeding motorists. During the 160-kilometre road trip, 'the inmate ended up out of the handcuffs and in the front seat, consuming alcohol', said Knox County Judge-Executive Raymond Smith. The first hint that something was wrong came when drivers began calling the police to report being stopped and let go only after a drunken pair made a deal with them involving cash.
The 37-year-old Wilson has been suspended from his job and faces a range of charges. The prisoner, Shawn Phillip Reynolds, 23, finally made it to jail. In court, Smith said: 'The next thing you're likely to hear is that we're on the Jerry Springer Show. I'm humiliated.'

Timothy Dumouchel of West Bend, Wisconsin, told Charter Communications to end his cable television service in 1999 because he felt it was addictive. Dumouchel said the bills stopped and he put the television set in the basement. When his wife moved it back upstairs, it still worked, so he told her that 'she could watch TV as long as the cable worked'. He then tried several more times to get the service disconnected.
Dumouchel blames the cable company for his wife's fatness, his addiction to television, and his lazy children. He threatened to sue Charter unless they settle for $5,000, or three computers and a lifetime supply of free Internet service. He said he plans to sue because 'they did not let me make a decision as to what was best for myself and my family and keeping cable into my home for four years after I asked them to turn it off'.

An ex-banker in Nagoya, Japan, decided to share his happiness after profiting from stock trading. The 26-year-old man began throwing $1 banknotes from the observation deck atop the Nagoya television tower. When an employee at the tower asked him to stop, the man replied: 'I am doing nothing wrong. I'll give some to you.' Leaving his attache case and several thousand banknotes on the floor, the man then tried to leave the observation deck. When the police took him in for questioning, he explained that he simply 'wanted to give it back to the general public'. Passers-by turned in about $1,000 of the money to the police, who returned it to the man.

Florida's William F. Nutley, 56, robbed a bank, then crossed the street and waited for a taxi. He had the cab take him to a liquor store 15 kilometres away, in New Smyrna Beach. He stayed there, drinking, for two hours. When the police showed up, Nutley tried to crawl through the back door of the off-licence. Police were able to apprehend him and collect that portion of the stolen money that he had with him.

20 January 2004

The AP report that Guiseppa Cannata stole a 30,000 UKP diamond from a UK jewellery store and replaced it with a fake. The Italian then boarded a train bound for mainland Europe. Also aboard the train was the owner of the jewellery store, who recognised him and called the police. The Edinburgh Sheriff Court sentenced Cannata, 55, to 2 1/2 years in jail for theft. Cannata, who has gambling debts in excess of 30,000 UKP, claimed the theft was committed on the spur of the moment. Sheriff Andrew Lothian rejected that claim.

Phillip Wood, 22, called the Kansas Highway Patrol to report that he had suffered a flat tyre. It turned out that the Ford F-150 that Wood was driving had been stolen from a Kansas dealership. The licence plates were also stolen. Inside the pickup were various stolen items. Captain Tim Bauer said that Wood's seeking the assistance of law enforcement was 'a good break for us and a bad break for him'.

Tennessee's Debra Elaine Kirk Moore and her husband are addicted to the narcotic OxyContin. When her four-month-old son wouldn't stop crying and go to sleep, she told police, she 'took his pacifier into the bathroom where the OxyContin had been crushed [...]. I stuck the wet pacifier into the dust and crumbs and put it back into the baby's mouth'. When she awoke the next morning, the baby wasn't breathing. She was convicted of criminally negligent homicide and aggravated child abuse, which carry sentences of one to two years and 15 to 25 years in prison, respectively. Four months earlier, her two-year-old daughter died in a swimming pool.

Officers Rick Fisher and Paul Toth noticed a car weaving along a Toledo, Ohio, street. When he was pulled over, the driver said 'I am not going to jail. You will have to kill me first', then got back into the car and led police on a 45-minute chase that at times proceeded significantly below the speed limit and looped back on itself. The driver, identified as 55-year-old Sandy Long, happened to turn toward police headquarters. Surrounded by officers ending their shift, he slowed down. When officers stopped the vehicle, Long emerged wearing high-heeled shoes, a wig, and women's clothing.
Fisher said that Long would have been given a court date but not sent to jail if he'd co-operated initially.

While speeding and speaking on a mobile phone while over the state's .10 blood alcohol limit, Pennsylvania's Jennifer Langston, 27, crossed the centre line and crashed into a pickup truck, killing the driver and leaving his wife in a coma, shortly after which her baby was delivered. As part of a plea agreement, Langston agreed to carry a photo of the dead man, Glenn Clark, during her six months of house arrest and five years of probation. Clark's mother, Rosellen Moller, said: 'She took my son, she took my daughter-in-law, and I gave her the picture of what she did to Glenn.' Langston asked a judge to require that she be given a photo of Clark in life rather than the casket photo. The request was denied. Langston has also petitioned the court to remove the requirement for payment to the state Victims Compensation Fund.

A 38-year-old Tokyo man unplugged a business's neon sign and was using the electricity to recharge his mobile phone when a police officer caught him. In another incident, a 22-year-old university student unplugged a vending machine to use the electricity to power his portable stereo during a street performance. The man was arrested after local residents alerted police to the noise. The men are believed to have stolen the equivalent of $0.0094 worth of electricity. Both admitted their guilt and escaped with reprimands on their records, according to Mainichi Shimbun.

Maine's Portland Press Herald reports that a Russian exchange student decided to hold up the fast food restaurant where he worked. Aleksandr Razumovksiy, 22, and another well-known employee pulled out pellet guns while in view of security cameras and announce 'This is a rob!' before demanding $5,000 in cash for a car to drive to California. Assistant manager Lisa Conley said there wouldn't be that much money at the Wendy's until the next day. The two men left and were promptly arrested.
Two of the three witnesses to the stick-up have returned home to Jamaica and thus won't be available to testify. Razumovksiy pleaded guilty to three misdemeanour and agreed to permanently return to Russia at his own expense within a week in exchange for dropping of the serious charges.

Florida's St. Petersburg Times reports on Cynthia Christensen, a 45-year-old Spring Hill woman who uses a battery-powered wheelchair. During a cookout at her mobile home, she became stuck in a sandy area by her driveway. Trying to free herself, she ended up hopping a lip at the edge of the yard and entering the road, where a van hit her. Receiving stitches at the hospital, she underwent blood tests and registered a .12 blood alcohol level. There was a knock on the door a few weeks later. As state law defines a motor vehicle as any self-propelled vehicle, including bicycles and assistive mobility devices, she was issued a summons to face DUI charges in court. Of her upcoming court appearance she said: 'I was so embarrassed. People were laughing at me.'

Three men explained to staff at O'Charley's restaurant in Springfield, Ohio, that a manager named Mike promised to give them prizes if they removed their shirts and threw pies at each other. Manager Robyn LaJeunesse said: 'We don't even have a manager named Mike. I felt really bad for them.' The identity of the miscreant is unknown.
However, last year, David A. Brown, 35, went to at least three venues and, posing as a radio host offering prizes, asked people to throw pies or remove their shirts and be hit with pies. He then didn't return after going to his car to fetch the prizes. Cox Radio sued Brown for fraud, and in December he agreed not to claim to be with the radio station. When station officials heard about the incident at O'Charley's, they notified Clark County Sheriff Gene A. Kelly of the earlier events. Contemplating the case, Kelly said that 'disorderly conduct is a broad charge'.

Danielle and Robert True of Cocoa, Florida, were arrested after their four children were apparently found with head lice and living in a house with at least several months' worth of cat faeces. 'The youngest child was one and a half years old crawling and waddling in the stuff and that's abuse, that's negligent, and that is criminal', said Brevard County Sheriff's spokeswoman Yvonne Martinez, who added that Danielle had said of the lice 'if I treat it or get rid of it, it's going to come right back'. Children Cheyanne, Chylah, Chancellor, and an unnamed one-year-old were removed from the home. Their grandmother, Ann Lovell, said: 'I don't feel they should have been arrested. They should have been given the opportunity to clean the house.'

Dr Leon Gombis, a dentist practising in Oak Lawn, Illinois, implanted a permanent cap on a woman's tooth. Moments later, he looked at his records and accused her of owing $200 for previous dental work. So he allegedly held her down and tore out the cap. When an assistant told Gombis that the woman had paid all her bills, Gombis forced the cap back into her mouth and left the room, according to a police report. The woman said her bleeding was severe enough that she spent the evening at the emergency room after reporting the incident to the police. Gombis, who is active in various Christian missionary organisations, said: 'It's a non-incident. It's just nothing.' The woman and her husband said they had been willing to drop the charges in exchange for a letter of apology from the dental office.

A public defender in Kissimmee, Florida, arrived unprepared for a hearing for Esteban Mercado, a 48-year-old man who was accused of driving with a suspended licence. Judge Margaret Walker complained that Kemie King wasn't ready to proceed, and King said it wasn't her fault and that she didn't have the necessary documents to proceed. Despite being told 'Do not argue with me, or I'm going to put you in jail', King continued to argue with the judge until she said 'Contempt'. She was handcuffed and told to sit in the dock while Walker heard other cases. King said that Mercado consoled her and said he was really sorry, but 'I told him it really wasn't his fault'.

Seward County, Nebraska, sheriff's deputies saw a car circling the chemical tanks at Bee Co-op. They then saw Lucas J. Thomsen, 26, walk from the farm fertiliser tank area and get into a car driven by Dacia Colberg, 23. A short while after a high-speed chase ensued, a container was thrown from the vehicle. The deputies saw a 'white cloud of smoke' form in the car, which quickly stopped. When the pair jumped out, it was clear that they had suffered chemical burns from anhydrous ammonia, an ingredient in methamphetamine. Thomsen remained in hospital, and Colberg was arrested. After dealing with the two, the deputies too had to undergo treatment for skin irritation.

Receiving a 911 call about a house fire, an Ohio Highway Patrol dispatcher contacted the Niles Fire Department, who sent three trucks to Jason Radcliff's burning home. The fire was about 200 m outside Niles city limits and thus fell under the jurisdiction of Weatherfield's part-time firefighters, so the Niles firefighters just waited the 20 further minutes it took for Weatherfield firefighters to arrive. Capt. Randy Ciminero said his firefighters waited to make sure no-one was injured but didn't want to be tied up lest they were needed to put out a fire in Niles. Radcliff said: 'You don't just sit there and watch someone's livelihood burn. Don't call yourself a firefighter if you do something like that.'

In Martinsburg, West Virginia, firefighter William Feimster did his profession even more proud. He said he went to his mother's mobile home while she was out to get some videos to watch at work. He became upset at the mess in the house, so he lit a roadside flare and placed it in a rubbish bin in the kitchen. He then drove to a private ambulance company where he worked and helped fight the fire when the call came out. The mobile home was destroyed. Feimster, 25, turned himself in at the sheriff's office. He has also been charged with embezzlement in an unrelated case.

Iowa's Clyde Lamar Pace II didn't need to remove the small bag of marijuana from his pockets and place it on the tray when passing through a metal detector at the Polk County courthouse. Chief Deputy Bill Vaughn said that 'the person working the security post said "Hey, what is this?". He kind of gave that old I've-been-caught look, and the chase was on'. The 18-year-old Pace tried to retrace his steps but ended up running the length of the building before entering a locked revolving door and being arrested. The incident caused Pace to miss his scheduled hearing regarding drug and driving offences.

Three naked men entered a Denny's restaurant in Spokane, Washington, in the wee hours. Streaking through the restaurant, they saw a man leave the restaurant and drive away with their getaway car and thus their clothes as well. The men huddled together to keep warm in the nearly freezing car park, where they remained behind cars until police arrived. 'I don't think they were hiding. I think they were just concealing themselves', said police spokesman Dick Cottam. No charges were filed.

The Portland International Jetport was evacuated and flights delayed or cancelled when a passenger screener spotted a suspicious capped PVC pipe in the luggage of a middle-aged businessman. The FBI and Maine and local police interviewed him, while the state bomb squad investigated the pipe with its batteries and wires. Security officials say they believe the Portland man couldn't have known how his electronic bagpipe chanter in its case would look when x-rayed. Of the practice chanter, which the man left in the boot of his car in the end, jetport security chief Robert Dyer stated: 'He didn't do anything wrong technically. We've never seen one before.'

Responding to an anonymous tip, police in Tennessee found Nathan A. Solomon, 39, wrapped in duct tape by the banks of a river. Solomon explained that he had been carjacked, kidnapped, and released three days later. Solomon's plumbing truck was found a few days later, minus several thousand dollars' worth of his employer's plumbing equipment. Questioned later by police who were trying to track down the culprits, Solomon admitted that he and his girlfriend, Debbie Gregory, had pawned the plumbing equipment in order to buy crack. Gregory had taped him up for the police to find.

West Virginia police said a man taped a bomb threat to the drive-through window at Community Bank in Parkersburg. The note said the explosive device would not be used if tellers complied with the man's request for money. Police Detectives Greg Nangle and Joe Martin said that the robber returned to the scene to remove the note from the window. The man, 36-year-old Eugene D. Golden, was arrested as he tried to enter a car. A brown bag full of money was recovered from the vehicle. No bomb was found.

Hawaii's Michael Ilaszczat was stationed on Johnston Atoll by a federal contractor. Bored at a bar, he bet soldiers $100 that one of them couldn't kick above his head without touching him. Kicked in the head, Ilaszczat won the bet, but he had to get an artificial hip. Judge Barry Silverman has ruled that Ilaszczat should get disability benefits, as the atoll's isolation and few social opportunities make 'horseplay of the type that occurred here [...] a foreseeable incident of one's employment on the atoll'.

Katrina Combs, 31, of Milford Center, Ohio, was working at a nursing facility when she decided to pretend she had cancer, shaving her head and dyeing her skin. Her former boss, Mindy Bailey, said Combs claimed to have several types of cancer over a three-year period. 'We all gave her money [...] and we were having bake sales every week and giving her the proceeds', Bailey said. Combs contended that 'I only took money once' and couldn't tell the truth after that. She pointed out in court that 'I used the money for bills, but I never bought anything for myself or my family'. Combs was sentenced to community service, three days in jail, a $500 fine, $6,400 in restitution, and probation. The same court earlier convicted two parents of perpetrating a cancer hoax involving their daughter (see

A 33-year-old Indiana woman stands accused of injecting human waste into her daughter via a hospital IV. Highland's Tracie L. Fleck was arrested after she was caught on videotape interfering with the 21-month-old daughter's IV tube. Hospital officials said their suspicions had been aroused when the child kept developing infections after receiving treatment. Cameras were placed in the room after investigations revealed that faecal matter was to blame for the infections. Fleck had taken her daughter to the hospital 11 times in the past year.

Pennsylvania parole officer James Cameron Thomas started paying frequent visits to the furniture store where parolee Thomas E. Cahill, Jr, worked. Cahill discovered that Thomas was having an affair with his wife. On account of the affair, Cahill and Thomas's wife developed a friendship, which Thomas reported as harassment. Cahill was therefore sent to prison on a parole violation. After he was cleared of wrongdoing and released, he began abusing alcohol again and was divorced. Judge Christopher C. Conner has ordered Thomas to pay $233,600 to Cahill. As Thomas was fired from his job, it appears that the award will go uncollected.

A 42-year-old German prisoner was released after serving a 13-year sentence for a series of armed robberies. Among the possessions returned to him when he left jail was a gun. He was caught allegedly using the gun to try to rob a bank in Krefeld. Prison spokesman Werner Schwenzer of Krefeld said that 'a mistake was obviously made when he was first convicted and his gun placed with the rest of his possessions in safekeeping, instead of being completely confiscated'.

Curtis Smith, Sr, 71, said he was sleeping off the effects of a few drinks in his truck on a lot he owns when Pine Lawn, Missouri, officers arrested him on suspicion of drunken driving and selling drugs. The money in his wallet, which included a $1,000 note he had been carrying for 20 years, was confiscated. Mayor Adrian Wright wanted the note 'as a novelty item', as notes in this denomination were last produced in 1934. A spokesman for the county prosecutor said there was nothing illegal about the mayor getting police to replace the note with ten notes of a tenth the value each and depositing the money in the bank account for seized assets. When the police refused to charge Smith with the drugs offence, the money was returned to him by cheque. City Attorney Mark Zoole said Smith's demands for return of the note would be met only when it was no longer considered evidence in a criminal case and after he paid for it at the going rate.


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