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May 2012

8 May 2012

Una Noche is a film about Cuban defectors. Arrangements were made for its stars, 20-year-olds Javier Nunez Florian and Analin de la Rua de la Torre, to appear at its premiere, at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York. The film's producer last saw the two Cuban actors at Miami International Airport, and their suitcases arrived empty in New York. A week later, both actors emerged from hiding in Miami and announced their defection.

According to Idaho's Bonner County Daily Bee, police were called to John Ernest Cross's home in response to reports that he had pointed a rifle at another man and ordered him to perform the 'moonwalk' dance move. The 30-year-old Cross later claimed in court that he had only used a pellet gun, not an AR-15, to coerce the other man to imitate Michael Jackson.
It is unclear whether the incident was inspired by Back to the Future III.

A 62-year-old Finnish man was arrested at a petrol station in Salo, Finland, after he groped a woman through a 50-by-50-centimetre hatch he had sawn between two toilet stalls. It is unclear how many such incidents may have occurred previously: 'If you place the missing piece back carefully, it is not necessarily that easy to notice the hole,' said Detective Inspector Vesa Aaltonen, with the Police Department of Southwest Finland. The man is suspected of a similar incident reported at a restaurant in nearby Turku a week earlier.
With respect to the man's criminal record, Aaltonen said that the police 'could say that the confusions of life are not unfamiliar to him'.

After watching a documentary on the 'breatharianism' concept in 2010, a woman given the pseudonym Anna Gut by Swiss newspaper Tages Anzeiger decided to try living on sunlight alone - even spitting out her saliva.
She is not the first to go on such a spiritual journey or to reach this destination: When she didn't answer the telephone, her family forced entry to her home and found her dead. District attorney Thomas Bürgi said that investigation of the case has concluded, as there is no evidence of 'foreign influence'.

Canada's Jason Laperriere didn't want his girlfriend to find out that he had spent the night smoking crack cocaine with a woman to whom he had given drugs in exchange for sex. As an alibi for his absence, he asked the woman to send his girlfriend a text message reporting that he had been kidnapped over a $12,000 drug debt. He later rang his girlfriend to report his release.
His girlfriend had contacted the police, so Laperriere filed a report with them after his 'release'. He helpfully included two names of suspects. He is now in trouble not only with the justice system for wasting police resources but with his girlfriend - or, rather, his ex-girlfriend.

Canada's Ved Parkash Dhingra beat his wife with a Hindu statue and repeatedly stabbed her. She died, and he was declared to have been 'not criminally responsible on account of mental disorder' when killing her. Justice Marc Rosenberg has ruled that it is only when a killer is sane that he cannot share in the victim's estate. Therefore, Ved Dhingra, who is now 'living in the community', is free to receive the $51,000 in life insurance that he had taken out on his wife.

Former Royal Marine Rhys Owen Jones, 21, and bricklayer Keri Mules, 20, were heavily intoxicated when at Sea World in Queensland, Australia. So it seemed like a good idea to release a fire extinguisher in the shark tank and then steal a penguin. They posted photos on Facebook, which led a friend to contact the police.
The next morning, they later explained, they found a penguin in their room and didn't remember what had happened. They put the bird in the shower and fed it bread while they worked out what to do. Their solution was to release Dirk the fairy penguin into a nearby shark-infested canal. A member of the public saw Dirk under a jetty pylon and rang Sea World.
In court, Magistrate Brian Kucks agreed not to record a conviction for trespass, stealing, and keeping a protected animal. He fined the Welshmen the equivalent of 600 euros each.

This batch of Clippings brings another story of a door-to-door purveyor of pills. Pennsylvania's Mechelle Looney, 42, stole morphine from the nursing home where she is a caretaker and then left the residents on their own while she went door to door with the pills.
It wasn't long before the police received a telephone call from a woman reporting that someone had come to her house and tried to sell morphine to her. Looney was arrested.

Also in Australia, a court has ruled that a woman will receive worker's compensation for injuries sustained during sex on a business trip. The man in question testified that he and the woman were 'going hard' when a glass light fixture above the bed fell on the woman's face. Her employer had denied her claim for compensation, but Justice John Nicholas has ruled that the woman was injured in the course of her employment, just as if she had been hurt whilst playing cards in her room.

Police detective Kevin Gay visited a petrol station in Traverse City, Michigan, to show the clerks a surveillance-camera image of a man suspected of stealing a woman's credit card a week earlier and using it twice, at local petrol stations. When Gay arrived, the suspect was buying a pack of cigarettes. The 51-year-old man was promptly arrested.

Michael Baker says that there wasn't much fuel in the police cruiser to syphon out anyway and that the photo - middle-finger salute and all - taken by his girlfriend and posted on Facebook was a joke.
Baker, a 20-year-old man from eastern Kentucky, has been arrested nonetheless, for theft by unlawful taking. Police Chief Allen Bormes says that if Baker would steal from the cops, he'd steal from 'just about anybody'.

In Texas, Mahogany Mason-Kelly chose Twitter as her channel for taunting the police. The 20-year-old university student, wanted for traffic violations, posted to the social networking service: 'I still gotta warrant in pearland..those pigs will NEVER catch me!!!...NEVER!!!'. She was wrong.
It turns out that, in addition to $1,877 in fines for failing to appear in court in connection with the traffic tickets, she faces a more serious charge. It emerged that she had impersonated her sister during one of the traffic stops.

Shortly after the US Federal Aviation Administration's recent publishing of a list of agencies that are certified to fly drone aircraft, the chief of police in Gadsden, Alabama, discovered that his department has two unmanned aerial vehicles. Chief John Crane isn't sure why they were purchased, at a cost of about $150,000 from a federal law enforcement grants programme. He says the UAVs haven't been used, since there is no need for them.

After someone broke into a Bay City, Michigan, convenience store to steal cigarettes, a mobile phone was found dropped next to where the wall had been kicked in. It soon rang, with the caller identified on the display as 'Baby's momma'. The woman told officers that the telephone belonged to a Kyle Schmiege but quickly added a claim that it had been stolen. For some reason, police didn't buy the story.
While they weren't able to prove Schmiege's connection with this crime, their investigation did uncover that he had stolen a flat-screen television and other entertainment items in a home break-in. The 20-year-old Schmiege joins his brother in jail.

Florida's Belinda and Paul Berloni were arrested after taking their seven-year-old grand-daughter for a ride. The way in which they did it was a problem: according to police, they used their SUV to pull a 'small plastic Hot Wheels car' along a road at 8-15 kilometres an hour, with the towing mechanism consisting of two dog leashes attached to the trailer hitch. Also worthy of police note was that the girl was wearing just a bathing suit and that both adults were intoxicated.
When asked for his driver's licence, Paul Berloni explained that he didn't have one: it had been revoked in connection with an alcohol- and vehicle-related offence.

California university student Daniel Chong, 23, was smoking marijuana at a friend's house on 20 April when police raided the residence in connection with a tip about Ecstasy dealers. Chong was taken to the Drug Enforcement Agency office in Kearny Mesa, where he was questioned and then told that he could go home. An agent offered him a ride, and all seemed well. However, he was instead taken to a cell and forgotten about, without food or water.
In the days that followed, he drank his urine, called for help whenever he heard people in neighbouring cells, and eventually tried to kill himself by eating the lenses of his eyeglasses. Five days after Chong was placed in the cell, an employee opened the door and asked: 'Where'd you come from?'.
The DEA paid for his three days in intensive care and apologised, but that is unlikely to stop his $20 million lawsuit.

Tazviona Maluge Bhebe is a 40-year-old man who decided to wear boxer shorts over his head. His ensemble was accessorised with a knife, and the venue for his fashion statement was an off-licence in London, where he demanded money from the clerk behind the till,
The clerk's response was to jump over the counter and hit Bhebe with an A-frame display sign. This knocked the boxer shorts off his head. The ensuing chase around the store with the knife provided surveillance cameras with a good view of his face, and the boxer shorts provided DNA evidence. He has been sentenced by Croydon Crown Court to three years in prison.

A clerk at a Shelbyville, Tennessee, convenience store rang the police to report that a man had tried to pay with a $50 note that ran afoul of a marker used to detect counterfeit money. After Lorenzo Gaspar's arrest for using counterfeit currency, a police evidence technician told the arresting officer that some older banknotes don't react to the markers. The police took the $50 to two banks, which reported that the banknote was legitimate and very old. Police released Gaspar from jail, apologised, and told him to exchange the $50 note for a newer one at a bank.

Illinois's Analise Garner, 19, returned to the family home at 4am and had an alcohol-fuelled argument with her mother. It is unclear why she chose to bite her mother's hand during the argument, but it is far less clear why she bit the family dog three times. The English bulldog did retaliate, biting Garner's left arm.
Lake in the Hills Police Sergeant Mark Smith said that, because the animal was defending itself, 'the dog was not charged'. Garner, by contrast, garnered charges of animal cruelty, domestic battery, and under-age drinking.

A substitute teacher in Terrigal, Australia, is accused of challenging a class of mostly 12-year-olds to hold dry ice in their bare hands as long as possible. The 49-year-old teacher had a student time each attempt with a stopwatch. According to Nicholas Burch, who was a minute off the winning time of two minutes and 20 seconds, 'when our hands started to swell, he said not to worry, it would go away in 40 minutes'. Of the 16 students injured, 10 were injured at least 'quite seriously', with Burch among those who are on painkillers and make regular trips to the Wyong Hospital burn unit. The teacher is currently not working in a classroom environment.

After Arizona's Jami Lynn Toler had collected more than $8,000 for a double mastectomy and subsequent breast reconstruction, a doctor offered her free breast-cancer treatment. She refused the offer. It soon emerged that Toler didn't have breast cancer and had given the money to a plastic surgeon for breast implants. After police had a look at her medical records, the 27-year-old Toler was charged with fraud and theft.

Florida's Dwayne Dwyer led police offices in Florida on an interesting chase after officers tried to stop his stolen sport utility vehicle. When the SUV had become heavily damaged, the 19-year-old Dwyer put it into reverse gear and fled on foot with a fake machine gun. The SUV crashed into a squad car as Dwyer began climbing to the top of a mosque. As police neared, he jumped and then broke into a flat. Deputy Ian Sklar said that the residents of the flat, who did not know Dwyer, 'allowed him to take a shower and climb into bed with three small children, pretending he lived there'.
When discovered in the flat, Dwyer admitted to his crimes, which include grand theft auto, carrying an electric weapon, and driving without headlights or a licence.

When Sandy Winn answered the telephone, a police officer was on the other end of the line, asking whether her family owns a dairy cow. The Brush, Colorado, woman answered in the affirmative. The animal, Darcy, had escaped and was waiting at the takeout window of the area's McDonald's. Brush police clerk Vivian Llewellyn said that Darcy 'didn't get her burger'.

25 May 2012

According to New York state police, a man kept asking 25-year-old Shawn Mossow to shoot him in the leg with a rifle. Mossow's friend explained that he had never been shot and wanted to know what it feels like. Mossow finally obliged. The 24-year-old 'victim' is expected to make a full recovery, and Mossow is being held in the St. Lawrence County jail while awaiting trial on charges of reckless endangerment.

New Jersey's Lauren Odes was hired to do temporary work such as data entry and preparations for shipping at a New York lingerie warehouse. The job ended up being quite temporary: she was sacked after a week because her bosses deemed her manner of dress too provocative for the workplace. At one point, she was asked to wear a bathrobe over her dress, and she claims that she was also told that her breasts should be taped down so as to appear smaller.
The 29-year-old Odes has filed suit on grounds of gender and religious discrimination on the part of Native Intimates, which is run by Orthodox Jews. She said that her wardrobe was a good match for a company that sells 'thongs with hearts placed in the female genital area and boy shorts for women that say "hot" in the buttocks area'.

Britain's Rebecca Blake allegedly had drunken sex in the back seat of a taxi - in Dubai. The 29-year-old recruitment-agency worker was taken into custody alongside Ireland's Conor McRedmond. Both could face jail time for fornication and being intoxicated in a public place.
Blake has told the press that she is innocent and was drinking a beer on her own in the cab when the police arrived. The police investigation, which includes a search for forensic evidence, continues.

A parks officer in Ramsey, Minnesota, found Alan Petrusson blindfolded and tied between two trees in a public park. The 50-year-old's genitals were exposed. When the police arrived, Petrusson was gone. Only his sling and rope remained, along with his car and the pornographic materials within. As officers were preparing to tow the car, Petrusson appeared and explained his attempt to engineer anonymous sex by tying himself up. According to Police Chief Jim Way, Petrusson could face a charge of indecent exposure.

John Avalos, a San Francisco city supervisor, explained how he decided on his vote on a proposal to name a Navy warship after assassinated gay politician Harvey Milk. He used a ouija board. Avalos stated that he believes that Milk's spirit spelt out: 'Good riddance to don't ask, don't tell'. The non-binding resolution on the naming was passed, over the objection that Milk, who had been a naval officer, opposed war and would be an inappropriate choice as the ship's namesake.

Waking up when a light came on in his office, a 75-year-old Utah man found a burglar going through his desk. The young intruder punched him in the face and fled, leaving behind his swag bag, a backpack he had set in the home's back garden. Police found a USB drive in the backpack, which contained the homework of one Dallas Naljahih, 18. The police found Naljahih at his home, along with unspecified evidence linking him to the burglary.

Our next criminal is Bill Teitleff. In May 1958, at age 18, he stole two hydrangeas from Nashville's Centennial Park, to give to his mother for Mother's Day. He has now turned himself in and has returned plants from the root system of the stolen flowering plants to park officers. Teitleff says that he can now walk through the park without being hounded by guilt.

Taxi driver Hisham Elian told the police that fare Carl Kulmus asked him to drive to a store for cigarettes. Leaving the shop empty-handed, Kulmus said that the smokes were too expensive, so he asked to be taken to a second shop. This one too didn't yield cigarettes at the desired price. At a third shop, Elian asked for the $12 taxi fare, and the 68-year-old Kulmus refused to pay, telling Elian to ring the police if he wanted the money.
Officers frisked a less than co-operative Kulmus and found $5,063.94 in his pockets. He has been charged with theft of services.

Authorities are looking for the parents of a child who was placed in a tumble-dryer at a Camden, New Jersey, laundrette as a joke. The owner of the laundry says that the father was clearly playing a prank on the mother, placing the child in the machine as if he were part of the load of washing. The light-hearted mood changed when the automatic locking mechanism on the machine's door activated the dryer. Eventually, an employee turned off the power to the machine.

British Columbia's The Province reports that a Victoria woman rang the emergency number when she heard a violent disturbance, replete with shouting, unfold in her neighbour's basement at about 5am. Deputy police chief John Ducker reported that, after waiting at the door for several minutes, officers were allowed into the home, where they asked about the noise. 'The man explained that he had been essentially on the toilet having his morning constitutional but he was done now,' said Ducker. The resident said that he would do his best to restrain himself in future endeavours.

According to Russia's RIA Novosti, a 32-year-old man in Tyumen, western Siberia, decided to escape from his girlfriend during an argument so jumped into a waste-disposal chute from the eighth-storey landing of a block of flats. Three floors down, he became stuck and started to cry for help. According to Emergency Response Service spokeswoman Elena Tretiyachenko, an eyewitness contacted rescuers, who had to cut away a section of the chute in order to pull the man out.

[IMG: Car in tree] Zbigniew Filo is a 24-year-old 'boy racer' in Lubczyna, Poland. Speaking for the local police, Marta Pierko summed up recent events: 'We received a call from a man saying his car was stuck in a tree, and that his neighbours had put it there. After inspecting the site, we instructed him to remove it from the tree.' While he puzzled over how to remove it, the modified Ford Escort fell to the ground the next night, ending up somewhat rumpled.
Polish media quote one local as saying: 'Whoever or whatever it was, it's probably a good thing, as he was a dangerous driver and could have killed someone. Perhaps he'll think twice about his hair-raising driving and about getting a licence, or who knows where his next car might end up?'

Keithan Manuel is accused of walking into the Wilmer, Texas, police station and pointing his towel-covered hand at a female officer behind a dispatch window while saying: 'Give me all your money.' He then told her that he was actually just there to check on a warrant. However, he added: 'You do know I have a gun.' The officer raised the alarm, and Manuel got to see what real guns look like.
He later said: 'Man, I play like that all the time. I didn't think she would take it seriously.'

David Wilson, 47, travelled from Wales to Tromsø, Norway, to research his long-dead great-uncle, Captain Paddy Gingles of the Dambusters 617 squadron. Before his trip, Wilson had rung the town's museum to explain his plans and request a tour. The information became garbled enough that Wilson's arrival in Tromsø was hailed by Mayor Jen Joah Hjort, war veterans, and television crews hoping to cover the captain's visit to the scene of his World War II bombing raid.
Wilson later said: 'It was a classic case of mistaken identity - but when I explained the confusion, they took it very well.'

Oregon's Douglas Eki and Xerxes Doctolero reported their employer, Menzies Aviation, for not providing an on-site toilet. Because the men, mechanical technicians at Portland International Airport, were not welcome in neighbouring businesses' loos, they used a bucket. A few days after their report to regulators, they were fired. A company lawyer argued that the men had been let go because they kept urinating in a bucket after being told not to do so.
A jury found that the dismissal was an unfair one, and the two men were awarded $332,000.

A Japanese designer in New York City was arrested for placing LED-illuminated plastic bags with the 'I Love NY' logo on trees and lamp-posts for New York Design Week. A member of the public contacted city officials to ask that the bags be removed as an eyesore. His call was transferred to the police, who ended up arresting the designer, 50-year-old Takeshi Miyakawa, on suspicion of planting fake bombs in Brooklyn.

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