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September 2014

25 September 2014

A state trooper noticed something odd about the number plate of a car on the interstate highway running through Chicopee, Massachusetts. While both 'Massachusetts' and 'The Spirit of America' were printed in the appropriate places in blue, and the car's registration code took pride of place in the customary red, this had been accomplished with a blue biro and a red marker. The plate was a piece of cardboard. The 20-year-old driver has been charged with attaching false plates to her car and driving with a suspended licence.

According to police in St. Petersburg, Florida, a woman decided to get back at a hair salon that she claims owed her money. Sy Makemin Lydia Savane stole the barber's chair, valued at about a thousand euros, to use later 'as leverage to obtain money owed from work done at the business', according to the 27-year-old Savane's arrest report. She has been charged with grand theft.

Ohio's Coshocton Tribune reports that Thomas George, who owns a strip club, and New Beginnings Ministries pastor Bill Dunfee have been called upon to end their weekly protests at each other's workplace. Dunfee had started the ball rolling, and retaliatory Sunday-morning protests at the church, at least once featuring topless dancers, soon followed. A letter from the sheriff and city legal personnel asks the men to settle their differences, explaining that, [IMG: Satan waist-up]while they can't legally stop the protests, law enforcement officers have insufficient resources for things to continue as they are.

An unused pedestal in Vancouver, Canada, where a statue of Christopher Columbus once stood became home recently to a statue of unknown origin: a naked red devil with a forked tail who is holding his erect phallus. City workers quickly removed the statue from its perch beside the highway. It was not long before thousands of residents had signed a petition to erect the statue somewhere else as a piece of public art. The City of Vancouver state that they are holding Satan until his owner claims him.

The Oregonian reports on a three-year-old Great Dane that required a two-hour stomach surgery at an animal hospital in Portland: the 65-kilo dog had eaten 43.5 socks, according to DoveLewis hospital spokeswoman Shawna Harch. The animal preferred smaller, brightly coloured socks.
A dog in Yorkshire has more exclusive tastes perhaps, favouring silk and lace. A four-year-old Samoyed named Brian underwent a two-hour emergency operation after eating three pairs of knickers. One, belonging to Brian's owner, was gobbled up from the bathroom floor while she was showering, and another, retrieved from an overnight bag, belonged to her daughter. After four days at Abbey Vets, Brian ate another thong, which passed through his system without incident. Owner Kaybe Banks says: 'From now on, all underwear is put straight into the washing machine.'

Earnie Hooks stopped at a breath-test checkpoint in Fontana, California, where officers discovered that the 2014 Ferrari 450 Spider he was driving had been reported stolen. Hooks drove off before he could be apprehended. He later abandoned the car. It was taken to an impound lot, from which it was then stolen under cover of darkness. Five days later, Hooks was arrested while driving the twice-stolen car around his neighbourhood. He has pleaded not guilty to car theft and resisting arrest.

A 19-year-old woman waiting tables at an Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, wedding reception became uncomfortable when bridegroom Mark Williams, 33, started acting 'touchy-feely' with her and trying to force shots of liquor down her throat even after she explained that she was pregnant. She ended up summoning her boyfriend, Tyler Smith, to pick her up from work early. The two men ended up in a fist fight, and both were arrested. A third arrest took place when the groom's brother, an off-duty state police officer, struck a local police officer. The server reported that the bride watched quietly throughout the chaos.
Public safety spokeswoman Sonya Toler said: 'There was a lot of blood at the scene. It was kind of confusing and loud.' Contributing to the bloodiness was 31-year-old Brian Taylor, of unknown allegiance, who punched through the window of a parked car and told arresting officers that he was HIV-positive.

Florida's Mary Anderson planned out her funeral in detail, down to which underpants she wished undertakers to place on her body. However, not everything went off without a hitch after her recent death, at age 64. Anderson's daughter, Marvelle Freeman, noticed as soon as the casket was opened for the wake that the wrong body was wearing Anderson's clothes. A one-hour delay ensued, for fetching the correct corpse from an undisclosed location and transferring the clothes.
Stevens Brothers Funeral Home explained that the problem arose because they'd been handling posthumous arrangements for two women named Mary.

New York's Gregory Bolognese, 22, may have thought he was being witty by concealing marijuana, cocaine, and LSD in a stuffed lion doll wearing an anti-drug t-shirt. State police officers apprehended Bolognese and his DARE lion at the Plattsburgh Greyhound bus station, near the Canadian border. They were not amused by his audacity. He faces two counts of 'seventh-degree criminal possession' and one of unlawful possession of marijuana.

In considerably less trouble is 65-year-old Patricia Hewitson, an Exmouth woman who was curious about a 1.5-metre-high plant that had been creating a strong odour in her garden. Though her husband, who had studied botany in his younger years, told her she needn't worry about it, she e-mailed a photograph of the plant to the BBC Devon radio programme The Potting Shed and explained the situation to the programme's hosts. They informed her that she had been cultivating cannabis, possibly thanks to a packet of bird seed. Although the police were notified, Hewitson is not to face charges.

Some passengers on a Southwest Airlines flight from Seattle to Denver noticed a Wi-Fi hotspot named 'Southwest - Bomb on Board'. Passenger Ken Saldi recalls that the hotspot's name was soon changed to 'Bomb Location 19E', then 'something about the stewardess being hot'. While 'we realised he was probably just goofing off', airport security staff didn't see the lighter side of matters. Everyone had to leave the aircraft, and bags were screened again before the flight took off, without the miscreant aboard.

Ronald Strong, 50, explains that, perhaps because of his heart medicine, his bowels failed him as he was going through a security screening to enter the Portland, Maine, federal courthouse. Trailing faeces, he was escorted to the toilets, where he threw away his boxer shorts and cleaned himself in a 'frenetic pace, but it was repulsive'. After he took care of his court business, a law enforcement officer and cleaners found excreta that they described as 'smeared more than two feet up on the walls' and covering 75% of the floor. Strong was convicted of willful damage and creating a nuisance at the courthouse.
The 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals, one level below the Supreme Court, rejected his claim that the mess wasn't deliberate, in a ruling that discusses the nuances of the word 'smear' and refers to the consistency of chunky peanut butter. Compounding Strong's embarrassment, the opinion declared the mess so extensive that it could not have been accidental.

Police in north-east Estonia stopped a vehicle that was displaying an 'unusual driving style'. Behind the wheel was a 10-year-old girl. In the passenger seat was her father, who explained that he had just wanted to entertain her and take a trip to a store. The man, who was intoxicated, was taken to a police station. His designated driver was taken to her mother's place.

Benjamin Nutter, 26, is a Florida man who didn't want to stop his car for the police. He instead pulled into a Deland shopping-centre car park, dumped out the contents of a cup, and drove out again. He also rang the emergency services, telling the dispatcher: 'My hands are on the wheel, sir. I have not done anything wrong.' When Nutter finally stopped the car and stepped out, officers noticed that he had a marijuana product stuck to his face. They believe this and the spilt marijuana inside the car to have been a result of Nutter's earlier cup-emptying.
He was arrested for possession of marijuana, making a false call to 911, and fleeing and eluding officers of the law. Officers had initially planned only to inform him that his lights weren't all working.

According to AP reports, two officers carrying out routine checks at a casino in Bochum, Germany, found one of the fruit machines being operated by a wanted man. The man, who had resisted police, had been ordered to pay a 710-euro fine or else spend 71 days in prison. The police report that as the officers were telling the 37-year-old man that he would be arrested and taken to jail, lights on the gambling machine started to flash and the man won the 1,000-euro jackpot. He paid his fine in cash.

According to the Ada County, Idaho, sheriff's office, 18-year-old Tristian Myers was driving four other teenagers around Boise at 5:30am when one of them used a cigarette lighter to set fire to the driver's armpit hair. Myers lost control of the car. A 15- and 16-year-old were thrown from the vehicle, and all five young people received medical treatment for non-life-threatening injuries.
Myers was cited with inattentive driving, and an unnamed 16-year-old passenger for interfering with the driver's safety. None of the teenagers had been wearing a seat belt.
Alcohol does not appear to have been involved.

The California State Bar have recommended that Los Angeles Attorney Svitlana Sangary be suspended from practice for six months as punishment for the photos she used on her Web site. Its 'Publicity' page featured images of Sangary with such figures as Presidents Obama and Clinton and actors George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio. Judge Donald Miles wrote in his opinion: 'This court finds that many, and perhaps all, of these photos were created by taking original celebrity photos and then overlaying respondent's image in order to make it appear as though [she] was in the presence of that celebrity.' Sangary denies that she engaged in deceptive advertising and misconduct.

According to UPI reports, a 26-year-old Frenchman identified as Cedric L. tried to escape the law by faking his own funeral. Posing as his brother, he placed an advert in the Ouest-France regional newspaper stating that '[h]is mother, father, brothers, sister and the whole of the family would like to inform you' of the funeral. The majority of his family either didn't care or weren't convinced: only his grandmother and police officers turned up. There was no body.

According to Malaysia's Harian Metro newspaper, a man identified as Ramli acted on a friend's recommendation to implant small metal balls under the skin at the base of his penis in order to improve his sexual prowess. 'My private part was swelled up for three days, but I endured the pain and didn't visit a doctor,' said Ramli. He soon deemed the method a success. A few months later, however, he found himself unable to get an erection, so he visited a physician. Ramli, 44, reported that he took the doctor's recommendation to have the 10 rusty little balls removed.

Kentucky's media report on a man who wanted to ride the Louisville city buses at no charge. City workers are allowed to ride the buses without paying, so 49-year-old Thomas Landford dressed up as a Metro Parks employee. Police officers caught him because of complaints that he had been approaching strangers and telling them that he works for the parks department. Apparently, he was holding an open beer when police officers arrived on the scene. Landford was arrested for impersonating a public servant, among other crimes.

The Oklahoma City police have arrested Jorge Perez, 23, for bathing in a prohibited public area. Members of the public had complained to the police that a man was causing a public disturbance. The officer sent to investigate found Perez breathing hard and appearing rather drenched. Perez's explanation was that he had been washing his hair in the Bricktown public fountain with his shampoo of choice: mayonnaise.

A man wearing a Batman mask robbed a Verizon Wireless shop in Fort Worth, Texas, stealing mobile phones, tablet computers, and cash. After the antihero and his gun-toting accomplice left the shop, Batman removed his mask, in view of a security camera.
The two men are still at large and are suspected of earlier robberies with a similar theme.

France's Le Monde reports on two Italian men who were asked to give Cardinal Jorge Maria Eijia's car a tune-up. The 91-year-old Argentinian cleric's vehicle, with Vatican City diplomatic plates, may have seemed like a godsend to the two men: they were soon on their way to Spain to collect four kilos of cocaine and 200 grams of cannabis.
The men, ages 30 and 41, were caught in a routine check on their way back, at the toll points in Chambéry. They initially claimed to be chauffeurs who knew nothing about what the car was carrying. The police didn't buy it, and both smugglers are being held in a French jail.

Michel Togue, a lawyer in Cameroon, is sharing information on some of the dozens of cases in which he has defended people accused of 'being a homosexual', which has been a crime in that country since 1972, one that earns violators a fine and prison sentences of up to five years. Togue said: 'To catch people having sex, to catch them in the act, you have to [...] violate their privacy, which is an offense.' Accordingly, judges jailed two women simply on their neighbours' word, and the evidence in one case consisted of 'feminine mannerisms': the judge found that Bailey's Irish Cream is indeed a woman's drink.

In Ottakring, Austria, two brothers, aged 22 and 25, were arguing so loudly that a neighbour rang the police to complain. Officers arriving to ease the frayed tempers and investigate found the cause for the dispute - the malfunctioning irrigation system for their flat's 25-plant marijuana-growing operation. Speaking for the police, Patrick Maierhofer explained that one of the men wanted to buy a new system and the other preferred to save money by watering the plants by hand.

Alabama's June Simpson, a teacher's aide at Sparkman Middle School, had a clever idea involving two special-needs students: use a 14-year-old girl as bait to catch a 16-year-old boy who had engaged in 'inappropriate touching' of female students and asked them to have sex with him. She eventually agreed with a plan in which teachers waiting in the loo would catch the boy in the act and prevent things from going further. The boy, however, convinced her to meet him in a different boys' loo, and no adults followed them in. The result was another incident noted as 'inappropriate touching': she tried to stall for time, and he sodomised her. The boy was sent to an 'alternative school' for 20 days. The girl has not returned to Sparkman.
Her father filed a lawsuit against the Madison County School Board, alleging that her civil rights had been breached. Much of the case was dismissed. The US Department of Justice and Department of Education have now filed an amicus brief in support of his appeal.

[IMG: Cops pose after delivering pizza] Connecticut's Gary Harding, 26, stole an SUV from a woman in a supermarket car park. He may have then used it in a bank robbery. Police officers reviewed CCTV footage and, suspecting Harding, informed him that a scheduled meeting with his probation officer at a state office was coming up. Harding arrived for the bogus meeting in the stolen SUV.
Speaking for the New Haven Police, David Hartman said: 'Thank God people aren't always very bright; it really does make our job a lot easier. Not only to make the apprehension but then to also have the main piece of evidence delivered right to us [...] that was icing on the cake.'

When Ryan Rakos, a Pizza Hut delivery driver in Portland, Oregon, hurt his neck and back in a car accident, one of the first things he did was ring his boss. Police officers Michael Filbert and Royce Curtiss decided to reward his conscientiousness by delivering the pizza for him. The customer, Steve Huckins, says that he and his wife were rather worried when the police showed up at their door but were soon laughing and taking a picture of the officers with their pizza.
This was actually their second Hawaiian pizza of the evening - a manager had made and delivered a replacement earlier. He later explained: 'The officer said they would finish the delivery, but we didn't think it was true.'
Rakos is recovering at home and hopes to throw a pizza party for the East Precinct.

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