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September 2022

15 September 2022

An Ethiopian Airlines flight from Khartoum to Addis Ababa added a new twist to the traditional frustration of a delayed landing. The aircraft flew past the airport without descending, and multiple contact attempts by air-traffic controllers proved fruitless. The autopilot system succeeded where they had failed: when it disengaged, the alert wailer jolted both pilots from their slumber. They brought the aeroplane in for a landing 25 minutes behind schedule.
Ethiopian Airlines report that the two have been suspended from duty at least for the duration of further investigation.

La Tribune tells us of two flight-crew members who were rather more alert. Shortly after an Air France flight departed Geneva for Paris, an argument erupted over an order one of the two pilots had given the other. A slap in the face followed, as did a briefcase hit to the face. Upon hearing the ruckus from the exchange of blows in the cockpit, members of the cabin crew intervened. One remained on babysitting duty until the Airbus A320 had landed safely.

In other aviation-related news, when a traveller's checked luggage, valued at roughly 1,500 euros, failed to reach its destination from Florida, she alerted authorities to the location reported by the Apple AirTag tracking device within, in the Pensacola area. Okaloosa County sheriff's officers followed up on this after a passenger's bags with jewellery worth 10 times that amount vanished from the same airport. They paid a visit to Giovanni De Luca, a 19-year-old airport worker who lives on the street cited by the first woman. While De Luca surrendered all of the second passenger's items, the first woman's luggage remains missing - he had stolen only the Apple AirTag from it.

While seeking survivors after a avalanche in Alabama's Talladega National Forest, officers were alerted to a shooting on one of the service roads. Feigning a need for roadside assistance, Yasmine Hider had flagged down a pair of University of Central Florida students and then pulled a gun on them. One of the students too had a handgun, and an exchange of shots left him dead, his long-time girlfriend futilely attempting CPR on him for half an hour, and Hider seriously injured.
The girlfriend had witnessed Hider call to a woman lurking in the woods, and a multi-agency search revealed a group of people living 'off the grid'. Defending their 'base camp' was a five-year-old boy with a shotgun. He ultimately saw sense and set the weapon down, while nearly everyone else still alive faces charges of some kind.
Among the fallout from the incident is a rumour that forest-service personnel had turned a blind eye to people exceeding the 21-day maximum camping time and the discovery of various body parts.

Struggling to feed her nine children, Houston's Keisha Bazley turned to Child Protective Services for assistance. She began regretting this move after her 14-year-old daughter, taken into the state's care, told a CPS worker that she was hungry. The employee responded with the suggestion to become a prostitute. In a video call captured on the teenager's mobile phone, the CPS worker explains that 'this is how you can make money; I used to do this, and you could do the same thing'. The teen is now in a foster home, and the worker has been fired.

After Sunday services, pastor Michael Jennings was watering the flowers outside his neighbours' house in Childersburg, Alabama, when a police officer showed up to question his presence. 'I'm Pastor Jennings. I live across the street. I'm looking out for their house while they're gone' proved insufficient, since 'that's not a name; that's a pastor', and the response to his claim that he was watering flowers was 'How do I know that's the truth?'. This earned the response 'because I had the water hose in my hand'.
Soon another officer arrived, and Jennings mentioned racial profiling, at which point the neighbour who had alerted the police to a 'suspicious person' spoke up with 'I didn't know it was him' and begged the officers not to arrest him. Though he was arrested nonetheless, for obstructing governmental operations, the charges have since been dropped.

A few days after carting a trailer-load of bounty home from a storage company's auction of abandoned goods, a South Auckland family detected a foul odour. One of their neighbours, a former crematorium worker, recognised the aroma, and the family proceeded to open the nice new suitcases that were part of their haul. Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua, of the Manurewa police, reports that investigators are now trying to puzzle out whose body had been dismembered and stuffed into the suitcases.

An argument about an order for chips led both Antoine Sims and the workers at a Kennesaw, Georgia, McDonald's to ring 911. Sims told responding officers that, since the French fries he'd ordered 'are lukewarm but they're not hot', he had requested a new set. The staff described his request as consisting of threatening and cursing, and they asked that Sims, 24, be banned from the premises and given a criminal-trespass warning. The requisite database search yielded an alert that Sims was wanted for murder. After the ensuing brief chase and stun-gun discharge, perhaps he regretted having asked the police to show up.

Orange County, California, has agreed to pay $480,000 to a pregnant homeless woman whose water broke while she was in a California jail. Two hours after Sandra Quinones, 28, pressed her cell's call button, the staff responded and placed her in a patrol car for the journey to Anaheim Global Medical Center. With Quinones in labour and now bleeding in the back of their vehicle, the officers opted to stop at a Starbucks to buy coffee on the way. The settlement comes six years after she lost the baby.

A 31-year-old woman walking her dog with two friends near a Hamburg lake was accosted by a stranger, who proceeded to kick her dog. While she was responding with a call to the police, he lowered his trousers and exposed himself, before an encore performance that involved hitting her with a dead seagull. When multiple police cars converged on the scene, the 41-year-old assailant ran for the middle of the lake, where a fire-brigade boat later hauled him in. His two knives were confiscated, and he was taken to the police station.

In the days following this summer's mass shooting in Buffalo, New York, Catholic Charities managers in Omaha, Nebraska, announced an 'active-shooter exercise' for employees at their new facility. Workers expected a PowerPoint presentation at their scheduled meeting, not a hoodied man banging on the conference-room window and firing a rifle into the air. This was security consultant John Channels firing blanks, and the corpses in the hallway were actors sporting fake blood.
However, police officers responding to panicked workers' 911 calls claim they were not alerted in advance - though attorney Erin Wetzel claims that Channels gave them, the state patrol, and the sheriff's office written notice. He was arrested for making terroristic threats.
In court, Wetzel argued that Channels supplied the requested 'real life-like' drill for the organisation's $2,500. In turn, prosecutor Jen Meckna described him asking 'hysterical' staff whether they wished they'd had a gun and offering the sale of one, plus shooting lessons.
The cops report that Channels, 27, is in hot water also for alleged sexual assault of a 14-year-old girl.

This Clipping is for those who applaud 'turnabout is fair play' items - deer winning out over hapless hunters etc.
It involves a two-year-old girl in eastern Turkey who was playing with a snake in her family's back garden. Neighbours later reported to her father, Mehmet Ercan, on what prompted the ensuing screams: the snake's fangs pierced her lip. She retaliated with a return bite and caught the 50 cm snake between her teeth. After precautionary medical observation, medics declared her to be recovering well. The same could not be said for the deceased ophidian.

Someone in Port Chester, New York, received an unexpected parcel. Opening it prompted a call to the local police department. Officers soon made a Facebook post asking for contact from anyone whose box of live reptiles, such as lizards and iguanas, never arrived. The department reassured readers that '[a]fter catching all the animals we secured them until a local animal sanctuary can pick them up for safekeeping'.

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