Someone set up several crack-pipe dispensers in Coram, New York. These repurposed tampon-vending machines have slots for inserting $2 in coins in exchange for a pen-shaped device that contains the makings of a crack pipe. The police have found and removed at least three machines so far. City Councilman Michael Loguercio stated that officers are looking for the people who tend the machines, explaining that 'it is not illegal to sell the pens and it is not illegal to sell a pipe, but they are considered drug paraphernalia and they were being dispensed from a machine that was installed illegally per town code'.
Stephen Clayton, 64, was pronounced dead after apparently falling down the stairs at his
South Carolina home. Such tumbles are not typically connected with a toxic build-up of
tetrahydrozoline, a substance found in over-the-counter nasal sprays and eye drops, so
post-mortem investigations continued. Ultimately, his wife, Lana, was arrested and charged
with murder for adding eye drops to his drinking water over the course of several days.
The police report that she has admitted to poisoning him without his knowledge. They also report that they are revisiting an incident two years ago in which she shot him in the head with a crossbow while he was asleep. Lana had stated at the time that she joined her 'mentally abusive' husband in his bedroom after having difficulty loading the crossbow, then decided to leave the room, whereupon the weapon went off unintentionally. The shooting was ruled accidental after Stephen explained that Lana sleepwalks.
The Denver Post reports on a man who decided to hold up an e-cigarette shop in Aurora,
Colorado. He paced back and forth a few times in front of the E-Cig of Denver outlet, then
entered and gingerly pulled a gun from under his sweatshirt. Fumbling this manoeuvre, he
dropped the long-barrelled air/BB gun behind the service counter. While he was clambering
over the counter to retrieve it, the store clerk retrieved it. The would-be robber then
decided to make his escape. He did so but not without his trousers falling to his knees.
Shop-owner Chris Burgess said: 'I don't want to downplay the seriousness of an armed robbery, but the guy really does belong in the "world's dumbest criminals",' Burgess added that there couldn't have been more than about $100 in the till anyway.
The Aurora police department have also had to deal with a case in which a woman withdrew a
complaint about domestic violence, explaining that she and her boyfriend had exchanged only
harsh words, not physical blows. The woman, 49-year-old Janette Solano, added that she was
leaving him because he'd kept pressuring her to again have sex with the dog.
An investigation followed, in which officers found the trailer in the couple's backyard where the now ex-boyfriend, Frederick Manzanares, had built a padded bench to facilitate sex with the dog, Bubba. They also found videos that Manzanares, 51, had recorded of his hormone-spray-enhanced trysts with Bubba. The dog is now at an animal shelter, and the couple too are in the care of the authorities.
A woman saw a motorist run over a beaver beside a park in Kennekick, Washington. She wrapped the animal in a towel and headed home to fetch a container for taking the wounded beaver for veterinary assistance. When she returned to the spot about half an hour later, she saw a man over the beaver, with his trousers unzipped. She rang the police, who arrested 35-year old Richard Delp at the scene, for animal cruelty and possession of methamphetamine. The beaver did not survive.
We now move to Florida, where police and firefighters responded to reports of smoke at a Niceville home. A naked James Gregory Cunningham answered the door, apologised, and closed the door again. After being removed from his burning home and given trousers, the 53-year-old Cunningham explained that he had been baking cookies on his George Foreman grill and then become side-tracked. Marijuana and two litres of vodka may have been a contributing factor.
We can't leave Florida without telling of Abraham Duarte, who thought it would be a good idea
to escape from the Cape Coral police by jumping into a canal. Instead of facing a dreaded
speeding ticket, he received a face full of toxic algae. Within seconds, he was crying 'Help
me! Help me! I'm dying! I'm dying!' A retching Duarte was pulled from the water by the
officer who had pulled him over earlier, then hosed down.
The 22-year-old Duarte, who requested that special attention be paid to his mouth, described the 'gross' blue-green algae as resembling human faeces. He said that he lives in more northerly parts of Florida and hadn't seen news reports about lifeguards having to wear masks to protect themselves from the gunk, which has killed many fish and other animals in the area's waterways.
Connecticut restauranteur Duc Nguyen was tired of the flies and yellow rivers that result from pet-owners letting their dogs urinate in the plant pots in his restaurant window. So he installed a surveillance camera and posted this sign: 'Attn: dog owners. This is a pay-per-pee flower pot. (Pay inside or leave your address and we'll kindly return the favour.)' The city responded by fining him $250 for creating a public nuisance, which Public Space Enforcer Honda Smith explained was for 'you having people pay to pee' - 'you have a pee pot sitting out here'. Smith later explained to the New Haven Independent that someone had rung the city to complain that a pay-to-pee scheme would worsen the urine smell on the street. Nguyen plans to appeal the fine.
Our next report comes from China, where Hong Kong's high court has sentenced an anaesthetist to life in jail for killing his wife and 16-year-old daughter. Both were found dead in a locked Mini Cooper whose boot contained a deflated exercise ball, from which carbon monoxide had leaked. The anaesthetist, Malaysian national Khaw Kim-sun, testified that he had been planning to use the ball to eradicate rats at his home, not kill his family. This contradicted what he had told colleagues at Chinese University mid-inflation, about plans to kill rabbits with the gas. The jury were more convinced by prosecutors' evidence that he had been having an affair and his wife was unwilling to grant him a divorce.
Thank you, Dave, for the tale of California thirty-something couple Dean Cram and Lucille Trolinger, who started arguing in a car. The driver, Ricky Holt, stopped the vehicle on a rural Madera County road, where the pair continued to argue. Holt's attempt to intervene earned him a punch in the eye, and further fisticuffs followed. Well, until an oncoming pick-up truck put an end to the fight - motorist Joi Phatdouang, 68, was blinded by Holt's head lamps and fatally struck Cram and Trolinger.
Mount Vernon, Washington, police officers tracked down 32-year-old Timothy Hernandez after
his girlfriend was found headless at her home. According to court documents, Hernandez
proceeded to explain that God had told him to strike her down for not
repenting. Hernandez, who then cited two Bible passages about striking down women who do not heed God's word, added
that he would have to pray for forgiveness for having questioned God's
will and given the woman an opportunity to repent.
Investigators spoke also with the couple's three-year-old daughter, who had witnessed her father apply a butcher knife to her screaming mother. The girl said that Hernandez told her that she had to say goodbye to Mommy, whose closed eyes and bloody face confused her.
Hernandez told investigators that he is not crazy - a crazy person would not tell the truth.
John Allen is a special assistant to the New York mental health commissioner. He is also a prisoner, awaiting trial on 29 counts of misdemeanor child endangerment. Allegedly, the 61-year-old Allen lured teenagers into his home and, among other things, asked them to don nappies for him. Agency spokesman James C. Plastiras stated that Allen is to be fired from his $132,054-a-year position. He is being held on $10,000 bail.
Finally, quite a few men were enticed by online adverts from a women seeking
no-strings-attached sex. Arriving at her Homestead, Florida, home, they were greeted by a
cross-dressing 33-year-old man. This is pornographer Bryan Deneumostier, whose latest
project is 'StraightBoyz', a pay site that offers videos of straight men being tricked into
performing gay sex acts while blindfolded or wearing dark goggles. At least 80 of the
150-plus men who feature in the videos were unaware that they were being recorded. Some men
did ask whether the acts were being recorded, whereupon Deneumostier assured them that 'she'
wouldn't do that, since her husband is in the Army.
Plea-bargaining, he has stated that he is guilty of two counts of illegal interception of oral communications. But Deneumostier still has other legal woes to contend with. He is accused of having sex with a boy under the age of consent at a hotel in recent months.
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