A man arrested on a drug charge was able to "survive" four pat-downs, and still keep his gun, showing an alarming security hole, and perhaps a lack of training.
Bennie Ellison, 39, was arrested March 18 and managed to keep the gun all the way until he reached the Cook County Jail where, realizing he would have to disrobe and change his clothes, he dumped it in a laundry room.
He was patted down four times:
“Clearly, there were officers at the jail not doing their job and we’re in the process of taking statements from each one of them about how this could have happened. We’re taking this seriously and plan to enact discipline up to and including termination, if necessary.”
Kitsap Sun staff
Monday, March 30, 2009
A 24-year-old man told police he was no longer allowed to have custody of the child, but said he was permitted supervised visits at the Child Protective Services office. During one of those visits on Saturday, a “bud of marijuana” fell out of the baby’s pajamas, the man told police.
The child had been in a baby carrier, and police believe the marijuana may have originally been stuck to the carrier.
Police are still investigating the incident. No arrests have been made.
marijuana drug arrest
Story Published: Mar 30, 2009 at 6:45 AM EDT
Story Updated: Mar 30, 2009 at 6:45 AM EDT
ELKHART, Ind. (AP) - A burglary suspect and the victim both were
arrested after police say more than 31 pounds of marijuana were stolen during an Elkhart break-in.
A police report alleges 21-year-old Juan Trujillo of South Bend took 15 bricks of marijuana when he burglarized the home of Sergio Fernandez on Thursday night. Police say they found the pot when they discovered Trujillo hiding in his car later.
Fernandez got home as police were checking his house and gave
officers permission to search it. When they did, the report says they found another 14 ounces of marijuana.
Elkhart police say Trujillo will be charged with felony charges of burglary and marijuana possession. Fernandez will be charged with marijuana possession.
Another student has allegedly been beaten in a Chicago school. But despite promises to promptly investigate cases like this from Schools CEO Ron Huberman, the family says no one did anything about it - until CBS 2 got involved. 2 Investigator Dave Savini has been exposing abuse in schools for the last several months.
The victim in this case is a third grader. He says he was accused of "walking funny in school" so he was taken to a room and beaten with a studded belt. It allegedly happened earlier this month despite a so-called "crackdown" on illegal corporal punishment. It's another example of "Painful Lessons" in Chicago schools.
Nine-year-old Donald Shearrill says a security guard beat him with a metal studded belt inside Chicago's Kozminski elementary school.
"I think it was against the law that he hit me with a belt," Donald said. "I think it's abuse."
CBS 2 has learned other children are coming forward with information about alleged abuses including details about belts that were allegedly kept hanging on a wall inside a room at the school where the punishment was dished out.
"It was like four belts hanging," Donald said.
"It hurts me the most because this is somebody he trusted, somebody he felt safe around," said Donald's mother Keisha Daxter.
His mother and grandmother suspected the school might be keeping his alleged abuse secret, so two days after the alleged incident, they called police and our CBS 2 investigative team.
"They definitely broke their promise, definitely broke their promise, and that's why I came to you," said Donald's grandmother Lorraine Daxter.
The "promise" she's talking about came last month from new schools CEO Ron Huberman.
"We'll take very direct action against anyone who uses those means," Huberman said.
Last month, Huberman said he would speed up investigations and ensure the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, DCFS, is immediately notified of abuse allegations.
But in Donald Shearrill's case, Huberman's office confirms that the principal failed to notify DCFS, and the security guard wasn't suspended pending an investigation until nine days later - not until after CBS 2 got involved.
"This should be a big, big matter, it shouldn't be taken lightly," said Keisha Daxter.
CBS 2 has now found 819 allegations of physical contact involving Chicago Public School staff against students. More than half of those cases, 418, have been found to be valid.
Broomsticks, belts, yardsticks and staplers were used on students in class, and wooden paddles were used on athletes who made mistakes during practice.
Huberman inherited the corporal punishment scandal, and his office says he's working quickly to implement changes to protect children.
"It surprised me that he hurt me like that," Donald said. "Because I didn't think he would do something like that."
No one from Kozminski school would return our calls.
Ron Huberman's office says it is conducting a full-scale investigation into other abuse allegations at this school. A spokesman said no promises were broken, but admits that the school did not report the case to DCFS. Our year-long probe has prompted investigations by the school board, as well as a new policy on how coaches can treat athletes.
Read the full text of the new rule against corporal punishment below:
Section 18 - Corporal Punishment Prohibited:
"The use of corporal punishment on students is strictly prohibited. Corporal punishment is the deliberate use of physical force on a student, (e.g. slapping, hitting, pushing, shaking, twisting, pinching, choking, swatting, head banging, paddling or use of any type of object or instrument that has contact with a student) or requiring a student to take an action solely for the purpose of causing the student physical pain, (e.g. forcing a student to stand or kneel for an inordinate period of time, forcing a student into a physical position that causes pain). Coaches, assistant coaches and athletic directors, whether they are employees or volunteers, are strictly prohibited from inflicting corporal punishment of any kind upon students. This rule shall not be construed to prohibit the use of drills, conditioning and other acceptable coaching methods designed to develop athletic skills, teamwork, physical endurance and strength."
Liam Hoekstra plays in the backyard of his Roosevelt Park, Mich. (Muskegon Chronicle / Cory Morse)
Updated Wed. May. 30 2007 9:44 AM ET
ROOSEVELT PARK, Mich. -- Liam Hoekstra was hanging upside down by his feet when he performed an inverted sit-up, his shirt falling away to expose rippled abdominal muscles.
It was a display of raw power one might expect to see from an Olympic gymnast.
Liam is 19 months old.
But this precocious, 22-pound boy with coffee-colored skin, curly hair and washboard abs is far from a typical toddler.
"He could do the iron cross when he was 5 months old," said his adoptive mother, Dana Hoekstra of Roosevelt Park. She was referring to a difficult gymnastics move in which a male athlete suspends himself by his arms between two hanging rings, forming the shape of a cross.
"I would hold him up by his hands and he would lift himself into an iron cross. That's when we were like, 'Whoa, this is weird,'" Hoekstra said.
Liam has a rare genetic condition called myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy, or muscle enlargement. The condition promotes above-normal growth of the skeletal muscles; it doesn't affect the heart and has no known negative side effects, according to experts.
Liam has the kind of physical attributes that bodybuilders and other athletes dream about: 40 percent more muscle mass than normal, jaw-dropping strength, breathtaking quickness, a speedy metabolism and almost no body fat.
In fitness buffs' terms, the kid is ripped.
"We call him The Hulk, Hercules, the Terminator," his mother said.
Liam can run like the wind, has the agility of a cat, lifts pieces of furniture that most children his age couldn't push across a slick floor and eats like there is no tomorrow -- without gaining weight.
"He's hungry for a full meal about every hour because of his rapid metabolism," Dana Hoekstra said. "He's already eating me out of house and home."
Liam's condition is more than a medical rarity: It could help scientists unlock the secrets of muscle growth and muscle deterioration. Research on adults who share Liam's condition could lead to new treatments for debilitating ailments such as muscular dystrophy and osteoporosis.
If researchers can control how the body produces and uses myostatin, the protein could become a powerful weapon in the pharmaceutical arsenal. It also could become a hot commodity among athletes looking to gain an edge, perhaps illegally, on the competition, experts said.
For Liam, the condition has one potential drawback: Infants and toddlers need some body fat to feed brain growth and the development of the central nervous system.
Without adequate body fat, a child's growth can be stunted and the central nervous system can be impaired, said Dr. Erlund Larson, an internist at Hackley Hospital who is familiar with Liam's condition.
That Liam appears to be thriving, physically and mentally, is almost as amazing as his feats of strength. The product of a troubled mother who gave him up for adoption at birth, Liam was born with a suite of medical problems.
The fact that Liam was adopted by a physician assistant's family hundreds of miles from his birthplace -- a stable family with the knowledge and means to give him all the food, nurturing, horseplay and love he needs to thrive -- might be the most miraculous part of his story.
"God works in mysterious ways," said Neil Hoekstra, Liam's adoptive father.
Myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy was first documented in beef cattle and mice in the late 1990s, according to scientific literature.
In 1997, researchers at Johns Hopkins University Hospital in Baltimore determined that Belgian Blue cattle, an unusually muscular breed, had mutations in the gene that produces myostatin. Those scientists also produced muscular mice by deactivating the rodent version of the myostatin gene, according to scientific journals.
The first human case was documented in 2000, in a German boy, but wasn't reported in medical literature until 2004. The condition is so rare in humans that scientists don't know how many people have it, said Dr. Kathryn R. Wagner, a genetics expert at Johns Hopkins.
A genetic mutation prevents some people from producing myostatin. Those individuals can have twice the normal amount of muscle mass, according to medical literature.
In Liam's case, the myostatin his body produces is rejected by muscle cells. He and others with his condition can have up to 50 per cent more muscle mass than the average person, experts said.
The result of both types of myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy generally are the same: above average growth of skeletal muscles, incredible strength, a warp-speed metabolism and minimal body fat.
"Liam's never had any body fat," his mother said. "The only fat he has is in his cheeks."
The so-called myostatin blockade has generated tremendous interest in the bodybuilding community. Some nutritional supplements claim to block myostatin, but researchers have said the claims are not scientifically valid.
"If the myostatin protein is knocked out, muscles grow and rejuvenate much more quickly," Dr. Larson said. "It has potential for great abuse in the future as the new steroid."
For Liam's parents, the most pressing challenge is feeding the boy enough protein every day to fuel his body's high-performance motor. The wiry but muscular toddler eats six full meals per day and still struggles to gain weight.
Dr. Larson, the first physician to suspect Liam had myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy, said he was amazed by the toddler's strength.
"He was able to grab both of my hands and nearly do an iron cross," Dr. Larson said. "This is not something that happens for most men, ever, and here is this kid with this kind of power."
Larson said Liam's strength gives him a huge edge over other children, physically and in terms of self-confidence.
"When you've got that kind of power and that kind of strength, the world is open to you," Larson said. "He's agile because he's so strong -- when you've got that incredible power as a kid you're going to try a lot more things."
Liam's father, a die-hard University of Michigan fan, already is dreaming big things for his adopted son.
"I want him to be a football player. He could be the next Michael Hart," Neil Hoekstra said, referring to U-M's star running back.
Liam was born four weeks early and had a small hole in his heart. He also had eczema, enlarged kidneys, was lactose intolerant and had severe stomach reflux that made him vomit several times each day, his mother said.
No one knew then that the baby was among the few people known to have myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy.
Dana Hoekstra said her suspicion that Liam was physically different quickly intensified. Two days after he was born, Liam could stand up and support his weight if someone held his hands to provide balance, she said.
His heart and kidneys healed within a few months, but it took 18 months before he stopped throwing up daily.
Liam's muscular thighs at 5 months of age gave him the appearance of a miniature Lance Armstrong. By 8 months, Liam was doing pull-ups and, a month later, climbing up and down stairs, his mother said.
What really amazed his parents was the way Liam fell.
"When he fell backward, he would land on his butt, but he never hit his head on the ground," Dana Hoekstra said. "His stomach would tense up and he would catch himself before his head hit the ground. You could see his stomach muscles. He had a little six-pack."
Liam has given his mother a black eye and once punched a hole in the plaster wall during a tantrum. "That's called attitude," his mother said.
After a series of stunning physical exploits, Dana Hoekstra's father -- retired Muskegon attorney Darryl Cochrane -- told Dr. Larson about the boy.
"Grandparents like to brag and Darryl was bragging about how powerful this kid was," Dr. Larson said. "I had to see for myself."
Dr. Larson said Liam exhibited phenomenal strength.
"When I saw him I knew he had some condition," said Dr. Larson, who considered it "a wild longshot" that Liam could have myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy.
After Dr. Larson observed Liam, the boy's pediatrician referred the toddler to the genetics clinic at Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids. Doctors there said Liam was well below average for height, weight and head circumference.
But they noted "significant hypertrophy (enlargement) by the Hoekstras. The diagnosis: Myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy.of his leg, calf and arm muscles as well as increased strength," according to medical records provided
The doctors at Spectrum said Liam likely inherited the condition from his biological father, who was reported to be unusually strong, according to medical records.
An ultrasound performed on Liam when he was 14 months old revealed he had 40 percent more muscle than average, Dana Hoekstra said.
Liam's condition also caught the attention of Johns Hopkins researchers who were studying myostatin-related muscle hypertrophy.
A blood test determined that Liam did not have the genetic mutation that blocks all production of myostatin. Rather, he has the myostatin blockade, his mother said. His is one of roughly 100 known cases in the world, according to experts and medical literature.
Researchers at Johns Hopkins wanted to include Liam in a study of people with the condition. When they found 100 adults to participate, Liam was no longer needed. That was a relief for his parents, who did not want to subject Liam to the painful muscle biopsy that would be required of everyone in the study.
Dana Hoekstra said she was prepared to allow Liam to be part of the Johns Hopkins study if it could have led to new treatments for muscular dystrophy patients.
For now, the Hoekstras are content to let Liam lead a normal life. They have no plans to take the advice of friends who have jokingly suggested they hire an agent for Liam to line up pro sports deals or modeling contracts.
"It's great that he's going to have some extra muscle mass, but I don't want him to be viewed as some kind of freak," his mother said.
Dr. Larson said Liam shouldn't be viewed or treated differently than other children.
"He's a normal kid. He's just got that lucky twist," Dr. Larson said. "It's going to be fun to watch him grow."
Page last updated at 08:12 GMT, Friday, 27 March 2009
Volunteers flock to space experiment
What would you be prepared to do for money? For $6,500 (£4,500) a month, to be precise?
How about the following: locking yourself inside a small metal container for three months without any communication with the outside world, with electronic monitors attached to various parts of your body and with frozen baby food and cereal bars for breakfast, lunch and dinner?
To add to the fun you'll have five companions who will do everything possible to stop you trying to escape before the three months are up.
Meanwhile, from a control room outside, a team of scientists will monitor your every move checking for any signs that you are starting to crack up.
And banish all hope of finding solace through alcohol or tobacco. Both are strictly forbidden.
So it may come as something of a surprise to know that this well-paid, extreme version of Big Brother and The Weakest Link attracted 6,000 applicants from 40 countries.
And next Tuesday the fun will begin for the six lucky people who were chosen to take part.
After a news conference and with cameras flashing they will walk to a collection of linked cylindrical containers inside a dreary building in Moscow, open the heavy hatch and disappear inside.
All in the name of an unprecedented experiment called Mars 500 which has been talked about for many years and is now finally happening.
The six volunteers from Russia, France and Germany believe they are playing a small part in the making of history by bringing the long-cherished goal of a manned mission to the planet Mars one step closer.
Using the current generation of rocket engines, a trip to the Red Planet and back could take up to two years (compared with less than two weeks for a mission to the Moon).
So space agencies around the world vying to win the race to Mars have to be certain the next generation of astronauts will be able to withstand the psychological and physical trauma of extremely long periods of space travel.
The Mars 500 experiment here in Moscow will focus on the psychological difficulties of prolonged isolation and claustrophobia.
"It's a real probability that a flight to Mars would fail if the very serious problem of isolation is not investigated first," says Oliver Knickel, an army engineer from Germany who is one of the volunteer "astronauts" for the experiment.
"The impact of the isolation would almost certainly kill the crew on board."
Whether the six volunteers taking part in the current experiment will come to blows is a moot point.
"It definitely will not be fun," says Sergei Ryazansky, the commander of the mock spaceship.
"Each test subject [volunteer] has the right to go out at any moment but of course it will influence the whole experiment.
"So we will try to support him and make life for him better.
"Each crew member understands that it's our goal to go all the way."
And that will certainly not be easy judging by what we were allowed to see of the inside of the mock space-craft earlier this month.
Its cheap, stripped-pine interior was mostly bare, although we were told this was because the scientific equipment had yet to be installed.
There were a few home comforts, including a large flatscreen TV, a plastic kettle and an empty fridge.
But overall it was cramped, airless and without windows.
The sleeping quarters are particularly small and apparently not well sound-proofed.
Each of the volunteers is allowed to bring one suitcase of personal belongings including books, music, DVDs and games such as chess.
They will work shifts of up to 10 hours either during the day or at night, when they will be busy conducting scientific experiments and ensuring all the on-board systems are working properly.
They won't have much free time.
"You have to cope with the environment - that's the main point," says volunteer astronaut Cyrille Fournier who is a commercial airline pilot from France.
"You can be psychologically normal but some people may be claustrophobic or think something will happen.
"That's not the case for me, so I am quite confident."
It was all laughter and smiles as the "astronauts" left us to complete the final stages of their training before the big day.
And if all goes well with this experiment, then early next year another "crew" will be locked inside for a total of 520 days.
|Not 'lovin' it,' he shoots Mickey D's drive-through|
|Man fired sawed-off into window after being told menu was breakfast-only.|
The Salt Lake Tribune
Salt Lake Tribune
|Updated:03/30/2009 06:51:31 AM MDT|
A McDonald's drive-through was shot up early Sunday after a customer was angered that the restaurant had shifted from the lunch menu to the breakfast menu, police said.
The driver of a white Dodge Intrepid pulled into the drive-through at about 2 a.m. at McDonald's at 210 W. 500 South in Salt Lake City and ordered food from the lunch and dinner menu, police said.
When a clerk told her the restaurant was serving only items from the breakfast menu, the woman drove to the second window, police said. Two men got out of the car, and one pulled a sawed-off shotgun out of the trunk, police said. He fired once or twice into the drive-though window before the two men and the woman left on 500 South and turned north on 300 West, police said.
The Intrepid was last seen going west over the viaduct on 400 South. The shooter was described as Polynesian, 6 feet 1 inch tall, with long hair in a ponytail, a beanie cap and a white T-shirt, police said.
No one was injured in the shooting, police said. Officers did not know how many employees were in the restaurant at the time.
Published: March 30, 2009 at 12:51 PM
FUKUOKA, Japan, March 30 (UPI) -- Police in Japan said a 22-year-old alleged burglar confessed after he was apprehended by a homeowner's 84-year-old mother.
Investigators said Katsunori Kuruhara, 22, allegedly entered the Fukuoka home at about 10:30 a.m. Sunday and took a bag from the living room, the Kyodo news agency reported Monday.
The alleged thief continued into the kitchen of the home, where he was confronted by Kimiko Nagamitsu, 84, police said.
He told the woman he was selling iron bars but she did not believe him and held him by the arms while her 27-year-old granddaughter phoned police.
Police said Kuruhara admitted to planning to burglarize the house. Police arrived and arrested him.
Nagamitsu told police she was not afraid of the burglar.
"I wasn't scared. I thought he might come back, or rob someone else, so I thought I'd better stop him," she said.
More Picture click on link
You're 14. You've got 100 pounds of pot and an illegal immigrant in the car, and you're being chased by a ticked-off deputy.
Where do you go? The mall, naturally.
On Tuesday night, a Department of Public Safety officer tried to pull over a passenger car on Interstate 10 near Casa Grande, but the driver fled. A short while later, a Maricopa County Sheriff's deputy saw the vehicle fly by at more than 100 mph.
With the deputy on his tail, the boy drove to Arizona Mills Malls and crashed his car into a garage door at GameWorks. He then took off his shirt and ran inside the mall, but cops soon collared both him and the passenger.
The kid probably won't serve serious time for this -- and he'll have a helluva story to tell his delinquent buddies at the food court.
Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman Loera reported head of the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico, ranked 701st on Forbes' yearly report of the wealthiest men alive, and worth an estimated $1 billion, today officially thanked United States politicians for making sure that drugs remain illegal. According to one of his closest confidants, he said, "I couldn't have gotten so stinking rich without George Bush, George Bush Jr., Ronald Reagan, even El Presidente Obama, none of them have the cajones to stand up to all the big money that wants to keep this stuff illegal. From the bottom of my heart, I want to say, Gracias amigos, I owe my whole empire to you."
According to sources in the Mexican government, President Calderon is begging American officials to, in the words of reggae great Peter Tosh, legalize it. "Oh yeah," said an official close to the Mexican president, "Felipe is going crazy. He's screaming at everybody who comes in, 'Why don't they make this sh*t legal already! You're killing me here!' Look, everyone knows, when you have Prohibition, you create gangsters. And the more you prohibit, the more gangsters you make. El Chapo is hero now to all those slumdogs who want to be millionaires. Kids in the street, when they play games, they all want to be El Chapo, the baddest man in the whole damn town."
Meanwhile, many speculate that rich and prominent Mexican families are in cahoots with American businessmen in the alcohol industry, wealthy industrialists who launder the unprecedented profits from the drug business with their legitimate enterprises, and lawmakers who get gigantic kickbacks and payoffs to make sure that these drugs remain illegal, so they can remain rich, fat and happy. According to sources on both sides of the border, tens of millions of dollars in payoffs and kickbacks are stashed in Swiss banks every year, blood money from the brutal business made possible by a corrupt system supported by laws that don't, and have never, worked.
Rather than putting El Chapo and his kind out of business by modernizing outdated laws and in the process making billions of dollars from taxing drugs (as is done with cigarettes and alcohol), United States government has spent hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars chasing its tail, and offered a $5 million reward for the capture of El Chapo. Many have said that the offer is unofficially: Dead or Alive.
Meanwhile, as an epidemic of murderous violence rages on the Mexican-US border, and the American government wastes boatloads of badly needed money on the illegal drug business which results from the Prohibition laws, El Chapo is laughing all the way to the bank. "Whoever came up with this whole War on Drugs," one of his lieutenants reports he said, "I would like to kiss him on the lips and shake his hand and buy him dinner with caviar and champagne. The War on Drugs is the greatest thing that ever happened to me, and the day they decide to end that war, will be a sad one for me and all of my closest friends. And if you don't believe me, ask those guys whose heads showed up in the ice chests."
THORNTON — All that is missing from the Highline Circle of Life Center is a birthing center and an IRS agent.
Otherwise, Larry and Andrea Tabler have all of life's major events — both good and bad — covered at their new venture.
The couple will conduct funeral services, cremations and weddings in the 6,000-square-foot building at 12144 Grant Circle in Thornton.
They'll have a grand opening at 1 p.m. today.
The Tablers say they are only using good business sense when they mix, inside the same walls, the starting of a new life with the ending of another.
"It's the new paradigm in the funeral business today," said Larry Tabler, who has been in the funeral-home business for 42 years.
"We have learned to be flexible," added Andrea Tabler.
With the number of traditional burials declining while cheaper cremations are rising, funeral directors have to find ways to keep their bottom lines healthy, said Steffani Blackstock, executive director of the Colorado Funeral Directors Association.
Hosting weddings and receptions is the newest way to go, Blackstock said.
"Weddings and funerals are the two major events in life," Blackstock said. "You use flowers for both; you use ministers for both; and it's the one time when everybody comes together."
The center, which opened in November, is small but stately. Funerals and weddings will be performed in the same chapel, which seats about 150 people.
"It's not big and fancy, but it's adequate," Larry Tabler said.
A few paces away is the state-of-the-art crematorium. Inside the women's bathroom is a small table where a bride can apply and fix her makeup.
Tabler hopes to perform about 300 funerals a year, and up to 50 weddings. Three weddings have been booked.
The Tablers say they cater to the wishes of their clients and that a growing number prefer a nondenominational service — be it wedding or funeral.
"We work with families and help them with whatever they want," Tabler said. "We take pride in that."
SANTA ANA – The wife of a Sunny Hills High School teacher admitted today that she conspired with a former boyfriend to plant a shotgun and drugs in her husband's Jeep Cherokee to get him arrested.
Devon Eileen Abbott, 33, of Mira Loma, pleaded guilty to felony conspiracy to falsely charge a crime, false imprisonment by fraud, conspiracy to commit a crime, and misdemeanor transportation of marijuana.
But she avoided a prison term – which had been requested by prosecutors – after her husband, history teacher Gregory Abbott, asked for leniency.
Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals said he considered giving Devon Abbott prison time until he considered the husband's request and learned that the couple are back together.
Instead, Goethals ordered Devon Abbott to serve one year of home confinement, if she is approved by the Orange County Probation Department, or six months in the Orange County Jail.
Soloman Brian Silver, 42, of Maine – Devon Abbott's former boyfriend – wasn't so lucky.
He was sentenced to three years in prison after he pleaded guilty to similar charges plus one felony possession of a firearm by a felon.
Devon Abbott and Silver conspired in May 2008 to hide a shotgun, marijuana and prescription pills in Gregory Abbott's car in order to set him up for an arrest for crimes he did not commit, according to Deputy District Attorney Keith Bogardus.
An investigation revealed that Devon Abbott and Silver sent several text messages back and forth to each other, including some in which Devon Abbott provided Silver with the location of her husband's car and his whereabouts, according to police.
Fullerton police arrested Gregory Abbott on May 27, 2008, at Sunny Hills High after an anonymous caller claimed that the teacher was a drug dealer with a gun in the trunk of his car.
Two days later, police cleared Greg Abbott and targeted his estranged wife and her then-boyfriend after the teacher contended he had been set him up as part of Devon Abbott's ploy to win custody of the their two children.
Devon Abbott and Silver were arrested in June 2008 after an investigation by Fullerton and Anaheim police.
The Abbotts were married in 1997 and separated in 2005, according to Orange County Superior Court records.
Defense attorney Kenneth L. Morrison said this morning that the Abbotts are reconciled and are focused on the well-being of the two children.
"They want to put this behind them," he said.
Devon Abbott, the wife of Greg Abbott, talks to her attorney Mike Coffey as the court date was set for her trial at the Orange County Superior Court North Justice Center in June.
ROD VEAL, FILE PHOTO
Devon Abbott declined to comment.
March 28, 2009 - 3:52pm
WASHINGTON—A Montgomery County police officer was arrested for drunk driving in a marked police car Friday night.
Police say Corporal Fernando Martinez crashed his police cruiser into a concrete barrier northbound on Route 270 just south of the Montrose Road exit in Rockville.
The accident happened just after 11p.m.
The police cruiser had minor damage to the front and driver's side.
When police arrived they smelled alcohol on the officer's breath and arrested him for drunk driving after he failed a sobriety test.
Martinez who is assigned to the Wheaton district did not suffer any injuries in the accident. He is a 33-year veteran of the Montgomery County police department and his arresting powers have been suspended.
Montgomery County police say the accident is still under investigation.
NEW YORK —
March 27, 2009
New York Daily News
Police trailing a would-be bank robber from a botched holdup in the Bronx were surprised to bump into him Thursday at another bank. Police said the 55-year-old robber was carrying a pellet gun and handing a stickup note to a terrified teller when the officers closed in.
The lawmen had been canvassing the neighborhood looking for the man after an earlier attempted heist at another bank branch.
They said the suspect gave up without a struggle.
One of the arresting officers, Michael Gonzalez, told the New York Daily News that he and his partner were just in the right place at the right time.
Last Updated: 11:57PM GMT 27 Mar 2009
The six inmates shared their lunches with the 2 1/2-year-old boy, who apparently had wandered away from home, and played with him while authorities located the boy's parents, said Gary Kershner, a correctional officer who was overseeing the prisoners.
"Me and my inmate crew, we just kind of baby-sat for the next three hours," Mr Kershner said. "They were as much entertained by the child as he was by them."
The boy was on Route 550, not far from the Pennsylvania border, when a lorry driver stopped to pluck him off the road shortly after 9 am.
Mr Kershner, who had stopped his van to help, said the driver handed the boy to him for safekeeping until police arrived.
Police eventually found the boy's home nearby. The child was reunited with his family after child services investigated and found no immediate cause to suspect abuse or neglect.
The boy's father, who works at home, told police he had left his son in the care of an 18-year-old daughter, who then left without notice. State police were conducting their own investigation and would report their findings to Frederick County prosecutors for possible charges, Lt Michael Brady said.
NY Daily News--A police chase that exceeded speeds of more than 130 mph ended when the driver crashed and begged officers to shoot him. Police used a stun gun Friday morning on the man, who faces charges of driving under the influence, fleeing and eluding, aggravated assault by motor vehicle and resisting arrest.
Police say an officer tried to stop the man on Ga. 400 for speeding about 1:45 a.m., but he sped away in his Mercedes C230. He left Ga. 400, went westbound in the eastbound lanes of Old Milton Parkway, forcing oncoming drivers off the highway. He sideswiped a police car, lost control and slammed into a tree.
Police said he jumped from the car and started yelling, "Shoot me, shoot me."
The man was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
HARRISBURG, Pa. – A retired police chief said he was robbed by "probably the Pennsylvania," at a ' convention on Friday morning. John Comparetto said as he came out of a stall in the men's room, a man pointed a gun in his face and demanded money. There were 300 narcotics officers from Pennsylvania and Ohio at the gathering.in
Comparetto gave up his money and cell phone. But when the man fled, Comparetto and some colleagues chased him. They arrested a 19-year-old man as he was trying to leave in a taxi.
The suspect is also awaiting trial on four previous robbery charges.
The suspect was arraigned and taken to. When a reporter asked the suspect for comment as he was led out of court, he said, "I'm smooth."
DAILY NEWS POLICE BUREAU
Friday, March 27th 2009, 4:00 AM
A would-be robber was so focused on passing a note to a teller at a Bronx bank Thursday that he missed the cops standing behind him.
"How did you get here so fast?" whined the man as cops nabbed him during his attempted lunchtime heist in Fordham, police said.
The not-so-savvy hood, Mark Mcnulty, was too busy slipping an HSBC teller a note demanding cash to notice the two cops closing in on him, police said.
"He was surprised," said Officer Michael Gonzalez. "He was so focused on doing what he was doing."
Mcnulty, 55, packed a pellet gun in his coat pocket, but no one was hurt during the attempted robbery on East Fordham Road, police said.
Charges against him were pending Thursday night.
Mcnulty started his day intent on knocking off a bank, cops said.
He first tried to hold up the Chase Bank on Kingsbridge Road about 11:45 a.m., police said, but left with no cash.
Chase workers gave cops a description of Mcnulty, prompting Gonzalez and his colleagues - Officers John Kennedy, Richard Evans, George Billaverde and Sgt. Mark Pedevillano - to comb the neighborhood.
By chance, Gonzalez and Billaverde walked into the HSBC and spotted Mcnulty waiting on line.
"I was surprised to see him there," said Billaverde. The shaken teller "was in tears," he said.
Seconds later, Mcnulty was in handcuffs and bank customers applauded the officers.
"We happened to be in the right place at the right time," Gonzalez said.
Mar 26, 2009 6:25 pm US/Eastern
GLEN BURNIE, Md. (WJZ) ?
An Anne Arundel County family has 1.2 million reasons to be grateful after a $2 Multi-Match ticket proves golden.
Sally Thorner introduces us to the Boushells of Glen Burnie.
Donna and Bryan Boushell are so thankful their luck has turned. Bryan has been laid off twice in the past six months.
He was due a break and it came Thursday.
"I woke up this morning. I went out to my truck and got the ticket and checked it and like one of the people you see on games shows, bouncing off the walls, yelling and screaming, bouncing up and down," said Bryan.
He called his wife at work, and she immediately assumed it was bad news.
"Yeah, cause I couldn't tell what was wrong," Donna said.
But everything was right.
"It couldn't have come at a better time," said Donna.
"It's tough out there. Unemployment doesn't pay the bills, so this helps," said Bryan.
The Boushells, who have two sons and one granddaughter, will now be able to pay off their bills. They even have enough left over for a Caribbean cruise in May.
Bryan will continue to look for a truck driving gig, something he's been doing for more than 20 years.
"I want to get back into a truck. I'm more happy in a truck than I am inside," said Bryan.
After taxes, the Boushells take home $750,000. They treated themselves with a trip to their favorite crab house.
Fri, 27 Mar 2009 at 4:50 AM
Editor's note: This story is part of an ongoing series of profiles CNN is doing about economic survival in this time of financial crisis.
Nicole Thompson-Arce poses on her wedding day with her husband, Mathew Arce, and her ex-mother-in-law.
(CNN) -- Struggling to make ends meet, trying to dig themselves out of debt, Nicole Thompson-Arce and her husband have moved in with her ex-husband.
Together, the unlikely threesome of Omaha, Nebraska, is raising two young daughters from the first marriage.
It's the kind of situation that has left cable guys howling.
"They'd never heard anything like this," Thompson-Arce, 28, remembered with a laugh. "And they're in people's homes everyday."
When she and Craig Thompson, 42, were going through a divorce in 2005, this was not a deal either of them could have imagined striking. It was a messy divorce, the kind involving a custody dispute. But once they ironed out that battle, agreeing to joint custody, Thompson-Arce said they were able to move on and forward.
By the time she married Mathew Arce last July, she said she and her ex were friends. In fact, they were so close that his mother -- meaning Thompson-Arce's ex-mother-in-law -- was in (not just at) the second wedding ceremony.
Soon after the Florida wedding, the new lovebirds flew into a financial mess. She had left a job, and as soon as she found another (a temp position), her 22-year-old husband was fired from his higher-paying gig.
They fell behind in rent. The bills stacked up. The credit card debt grew.
A couple months later, Arce, landed a temporary Wal-Mart cashier position, which has since turned into a full-time job. But finances remained shaky and digging themselves out of debt seemed insurmountable.
In walked the ex with an offer, just in time for Christmas. Thompson, an 18-year bakery employee at Wal-Mart, lives in a three-bedroom, one-bath home.
"I knew they were having money problems, so I just asked them to move in," he said. "I figured I'd get to see my girls, my daughters, more often. And Nicole said yes right away."
Besides the economic savings, the benefits are many.
No longer do they have to shuttle Victoria, 7, and Caitlyn, 6, between two households. As a team, they can parent and be on the same page. Finding a baby sitter is never a problem. They take turns making meals, which they all share.
Thompson and Arce, who are 20 years apart -- "I had to get the whole spectrum going there," Thompson-Arce joked -- have become the best of friends, and share a similar sense of humor. They have tackled home improvement projects, run around together on days they both have off and often hang out at the kitchen table building plastic models.
"We just clicked," Thompson said. "When I tell people, 'I'm living with my ex-wife and her husband,' I get some really strange looks. ...It's different. It's unusual, but it works."
The transition has been smooth and great for the kids, Thompson-Arce said. And for their benefit, irrespective of finances, she thinks it's a living situation they'll stick with for at least five to 10 years. It has, however, taken a little time for the little ones to get the story straight.
Seven-year-old Victoria went back to school after winter break -- and after the whole team had blended under one roof -- and started telling people this: " 'My mommy has two husbands,'" Thompson-Arce remembered. "I was like, 'No, honey, don't tell them that!'"
What she and both men hope the girls are learning is that divorced parents can work together and be friends.
"There are so many families that go through divorce and can never let it go," she said. "I'm thankful, and hopefully our situation can help people rethink things because if they have kids, it's in their best interest to get along."
One might wonder whether the couple, who've been married for less than a year, get enough time alone together, given where they're living. Thompson-Arce points out that her ex works a shift that sends him to bed at 7 p.m., so the evenings -- after the kids are asleep -- are for her and her husband to share.
"When they do have a romantic evening, I don't hear them, so we're not going there," Thompson quipped. "There's a bathroom between our two bedrooms."
The ex-husband hasn't dated since the divorce. He said it's because he's been focused on work and taking care of the kids. Thompson-Arce, however, said that she and her husband are forever trying to get Thompson on the dating scene and want him to meet someone special.
Special, and understanding, she would most definitely need to be.
"He'd have to find a very open-minded woman because we don't plan on going anywhere anytime soon," Thompson-Arce said.
March 26, 2009
BITHLO, Fla. – Authorities said a man threw a Molotov <snip>tail at his neighbor's trailer, but the wind shifted and set fire to two cars, a pickup and a travel trailer in the man's own yard. The Florida Highway Patrol reported that a 51-year-old man got into a fight with his neighbor on Tuesday night and threw the makeshift gasoline bomb.
Authorities believe alcohol was involved.
The man faces multiple charges, including arson. He was being held at the Orange County Jail.
Last Updated: 5:23PM GMT 26 Mar 2009
Telegraph UK-Alex Wade, 78, hid behind a door and gave the two men a "short sharp burst" when they crept past.
The bachelor, who lives alone, keeps the homemade instrument on his pillow for "emergencies".
He said the burglars, who broke in through a downstairs window at 2.40am on Wednesday, ran off empty-handed.
Mr West, from Coventry, West Midlands, even tried to chase them in his pyjamas, but the thieves managed to get away.
His courageous actions have been praised by West Midlands Police and led to the arrest of two men.
Mr West said: "I was lying in bed and heard the front window smash and heard people talking.
"At first I thought I was dreaming. I keep a bugle by my pillow in case anything like this happens so I reached over and grabbed it.
"I went to my bedroom door. I yelled into the hallway 'who's there?' and then the two little scoundrels started talking among themselves.
"I opened my door and walked into the hallway and blew the bugle as loud as I could into one of the lad's faces.
"He looked absolutely startled and they both panicked and raced out the front door."
The retired factory worker made the bugle from an old-fashioned car horn after a spate of break-ins in his neighbourhood.
He said: "It's is the best burglar alarm a man can have. Now the neighbours will always know if I'm in trouble."
Detective Inspector Bob Petipher, of West Midlands Police, said: "This was an instinctive action from the man which has caused the offenders to flee the scene.
"It prevented any more possessions being taken from the house and they were swiftly arrested."
Two men aged 21 and 30 have now been charged with burglary and will appear at Coventry Magistrates Court on April 1.
After winning $4.4 million, Oakville grandfather says he feels 'magnanimous'
OAKVILLE -- This win was almost a century in the making.
Maurice Ducharme, 90, claimed a $4.4-million lottery prize Tuesday -- making him one of the oldest Lotto 6/49 winners in the game's history. But, not surprisingly, Ducharme told the Sun he's felt a whole lot younger since the win.
"I feel pretty young," he joked at his house yesterday. "It really helps you."
Shortly after quietly accepting the cheque for $4,448,017 in downtown Toronto, Ducharme went to the bank to cash the jackpot.
"It really felt good," he said. "It's hard to explain the feeling you get, it's magnanimous."
He learned of the win Sunday when he started checking the numbers he has played off and on since 6/49 started.
"I said to my son, Paul, 'I got it, I got it,' " Ducharme said, recalling the moment. "I've been trying for years but it never happened."
The Second World War veteran and retired Ford supervisor says he'll use his multi-millions to live a good life.
"I have been living a fair life so far," he said.
The Oakville father of four and grandfather of eight bought the winning ticket in town at the Hopegate Mall's Lottery Stop.
Although he plans to share the jackpot with his family there is one person he wishes he could share it with -- his wife, Pauline, who died two years ago.
"I miss her terribly," Ducharme said. "Especially at times like these."
With the winning draw happening on the same day as his late mother's birthday, he can't help but wonder if he got some heavenly help.
"I don't know if she had anything to do with it," Ducharme said. "Between her and my wife maybe they cooked something up."
The Windsor native was 22 when he went to war with the Canadian army. He spent five years fighting in France, Belgium, Holland and Germany. He came back to Canada and worked as a supervisor at Ford in Windsor and Oakville.
Ducharme won't be quitting his day job -- he retired in 1975.
"Now I won't have to cut the grass or anything anymore," he chuckled.
He's got some travel under his belt but wants to ramp it up with trips to Barbados and Florida.
Ducharme, who still drives, may replace his car with a new Ford Mustang.
Despite the win, Ducharme found time to fit in one old habit. He headed down to the Lottery Stop to make sure he had his ticket for last night's draw. At his age, why worry about pushing your luck?
Dean Han, 29, was already serving a suspended sentence for stealing a sat nav from another covert police car.
Sentencing Han to a six-week jail term plus the previously suspended 32-week sentence, Judge Simon Darwall-Smith branded him a "serial thief".
He said: "You are a serial thief, particularly from motor cars. The public deserves as much protection from your activities that the court is able to give.
"Individually the offence was relatively minor, but it's the quantity that makes it serious. Again and again and again you are committing offences against people's property."
Bristol Crown Court heard Han spotted the purse on the seat of the police owned, silver Peugeot 'honeypot' parked in Clifton, Bristol, on March 6.
Han forced the lock and pinched the £5 purse – unaware that it was part of a police sting and he was being filmed in perfect technicolour by a covert camera hidden inside the vehicle.
Avon and Somerset Police came up with its 'covert capture' cars after months of problems trying to crack increasing numbers of high-value thefts from cars.
The force took several normal cars and fitted them with tiny, high-quality cameras with a lens the size of a pinhead concealed around the dashboard.
The cars are now parked around the crime hot spots of Bristol in an attempt to nab the most prolific offenders.
Mark Hollier, prosecuting, said that on this occasion Han had only stolen the £5 purse and had left behind a TomTom sat nav system, cigarettes and a rucksack.
He said: "Police saw the door lock had been forced and the purse was missing. The DVD was viewed and it was as plain as day it was the defendant."
Han, of Bristol, has a string of previous convictions for stealing sat navs, both from covert police cars and private vehicles, as well as convictions for vehicle interference and an attempted theft of a car stereo.
Oliver Willmott, defending, said that Han was undergoing drug rehabilitation treatment and added: "This is a repeat offender but the value of the purse was low.
Judge leaps to help woman in court attack
Priests get jail for stealing from church
MIAMI (Reuters) – Two disgraced Roman Catholic priests have been sentenced to prison for misappropriating more than $8 million (5.5 million pounds) from their church, a theft one judge called a case of "greed unmasked."
John Skehan and Francis Guinan were accused in 2006 of skimming money from collection plates and bequests at their church in Delray Beach, Florida, and spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on real estate, travel, rare coins and girlfriends.
Skehan, 81, was sentenced on Tuesday to 14 months in prison and seven years probation after pleading guilty in January to a charge of grand theft of over $100,000.
Guinan, 66, was sentenced on Wednesday to four years in prison after taking the case to trial and being found guilty of a lesser charge of theft under $100,000.
Judge Jeffrey Colbath imposed the prison term on Skehan despite requests from prosecutors, defence lawyers and the Diocese of Palm Beach for probation only, the Palm Beach Post reported.
"The court finds the defendant is not merely sorry because he got caught, but is truly shameful, embarrassed and remorseful," the newspaper quoted Colbath as saying.
"The crime of the defendant was pure greed unmasked. There was not a shred of moral necessity to excuse the defendant's crime," he added.
When the priests were charged in September 2006, police said they had channelled money from collection plates into secret slush funds, using some of it for church projects and part for vacations, property and gambling trips to Las Vegas and the Bahamas.
Investigators said Skehan, a priest for more than 50 years, invested heavily in rare coins, owned a cottage and a pub in Ireland, a $455,000 penthouse condominium in Singer Island, Florida, and another apartment in Delray Beach.
Forensic accountants hired by the diocese found that $8.7 million had been misappropriated from the St. Vincent Ferrer Church during the tenures of Skehan and his successor, Guinan.
"Those who hold special positions of power or influence, including spiritual leaders, must hold themselves to the highest standards of conduct or they will be held accountable by the community," Palm Beach State Attorney Michael McAuliffe said in a statement.
(Reporting by Jim Loney; Editing by Eric Beech)
The New Haven Register
NEW HAVEN — One of three men charged with stealing up to $1 million in cash from a lottery jackpot winner in North Branford received a suspended five-year prison sentence Tuesday after he gave $175,000 in restitution checks to the victim.
But after the victim, Giuseppe Diglio, pulled the four checks out of the envelope given to him by Joseph Bernardo and verified they added up to the required amount, he told Superior Court Judge Richard A. Damiani, “He took a lot more money than he gave me.”
Diglio added, “I am very hurt.”
Damiani told Diglio, “I agree with you. With allegations of $1 million, it was a jail case.”
But Damiani said a problem developed verifying the stolen amount. “I used the figure of $350,000. Only you know how much was there. It’s tough to prove it in court,” he said.
Damiani added, “He’s getting a suspended sentence because he fulfilled his obligation to you” by paying restitution.
Damiani also told Diglio, “He’s moved to Arizona. He’s out of your life. He’s gone. If I were you, I’d say ‘Goodbye.’”
But Diglio said, “I went through a lot of aggravation. He knows how much money was there.” Holding up the checks, he said scornfully, “This is a Christmas gift.”
When given a chance to speak in the courtroom, Bernardo, 25, of East Haven, said, “I’m deeply sorry to Mr. Diglio and his family and anybody else affected.”
Last November, Bernardo pleaded no contest to first-degree larceny.
Under the terms of the three-year conditional discharge, Bernardo cannot violate any laws of Connecticut or any other state. In addition, every six months, he must send an affidavit to his attorney, Hugh F. Keefe of New Haven, affirming he has not been arrested for any offense.
Keefe said after adjournment he was glad Damiani did not impose probation, because it would have required Bernardo to stay in Connecticut until the case could be transferred to Arizona. Keefe said Bernardo has a job there and is “the only breadwinner” in the family.
The other defendants in the case, Raffaele Iuliano Sr., 45, and Raffaele Iuliano Jr., 19, of East Haven, are awaiting sentencing.
The Iulianos are Diglio’s son-in-law and grandson. Bernardo was a friend and neighbor of the Iulianos.
North Branford police said Diglio and his wife hit a lottery jackpot in 1986 and were keeping the winnings in a safe in their basement. According to police, the trio took the pins off the safe hinges and pried the door open.
Police said the theft occurred Nov. 5, 2007, while the Diglio family was celebrating a confirmation at Brazi’s Restaurant in New Haven. Police believe more money was taken on Thanksgiving Day of that year.
Diglio told police he didn’t notice the money was missing until Jan. 14, 2008.
Police and Diglio began to suspect the Iulianos were the thieves when the pair bought cars, houses and all-terrain vehicles. Iuliano Sr. reportedly also was spending a lot of time in casinos.
When police interviewed the Iulianos in the family home, officers noticed what seemed to be new flat-screen TVs and a laptop computer.
FAIRFIELD -- A woman is in trouble with the law for making her estranged husband a prisoner of love, according to police. Helen Sun, 37, of Tunxis Hill Road, allegedly slapped handcuffs on her View Full Story
AP-Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff is a lucky charm for one New York City construction worker. Queens resident Ralph Amendolaro said he saw Madoff's prison number in a newspaper and had a good feeling so he played the last three digits of it in the state lottery's Numbers game. It hit March 15, paying $1,500.
Lottery officials say other people had the same idea. The number combination 0-5-4 produced 501 winning tickets the Sunday after Madoff's guilty plea, up from 120 winners the previous day.
Madoff's prison registration number is 61727-054.
A lottery spokeswoman says people often play numbers they see on the news.
So many people played the flight number of a jet that landed safely in the Hudson River that the lottery had to halt sales.
HOLLIDAYSBURG— A western Pennsylvania county prison guard has been fired over a prank in which a new guard was locked in a cell with an inmate involved in a police shootout. Blair County officials didn't release the guards' names, but confirmed the incident after The Altoona Mirror received an anonymous report.
The report said the new guard was locked with the inmate for 20 minutes by a guard who wanted to see what the new hire was made of.
The inmate, accused of shooting at Altoona police in November, filed a complaint with the NAACP.
But Blair County Commissioner Terry Tomassetti said the new hire was the target, not the inmate.
Tomassetti says it was "just picking on a new employee," but still serious, and officials don't want it to happen again.
Information from: Altoona Mirror, http://www.altoonamirror.com
Alleged iPhone thief left photo trail
NEW YORK, March 24 (UPI) -- A New York woman said police tracked down the man who stole her iPhone after he used the device to e-mail pictures of himself.
Sayaka Fukuda, 29, who moved to New York from Tokyo three years ago, said Daquan Mathis, 18, and an accomplice approached her Feb. 21 at 4:30 a.m. on a train platform and took her iPhone and purse, the New York Post reported Tuesday.
Fukuda said she reported the theft to police and returned home to find something unusual in her e-mail.
"I checked my e-mail and saw something in my outbox," she wrote in her blog. "I knew I didn't send anything. I opened the attachment, and there he was with his black and red knitted (Spider-Man) hat. The same hat I described to the police officers."
The woman passed the pictures along to police and Mathis was arrested Thursday and charged with robbery and grand larceny.
An Elgin man who told police his dream car was a red Nissan Altima with a push-button ignition, has been charged with attempting to steal one from a local car dealership, according to police reports.
Carliss D. Henderson, 21, of the first block of Seneca Street, on Monday was charged with burglary, a class two felony, and attempted theft, a class three felony.
According to a police report, Henderson at midnight Sunday made his way to the McGrath Nissan auto dealership on East Chicago Street, saw "his dream car" on the showroom floor and yanked one of the dealership's doors at least four times, breaking the lock.
Once inside, Henderson started the car, but couldn't find a way to get it out of the building, reports said.
Angered, he picked up a chair and threw it at the showroom window directly behind the 2009 car, reports said.
But when he put the car into reverse and tried driving backward through the broken window, the car wouldn't move, reports said.
Police discovered Henderson a short time later during routine patrols, reports said.
Police had already encountered Henderson twice that evening - once during a domestic dispute and again when he tried to force his way into a car at East Chicago Avenue and Spring Street, reports said. He does not face charges in either case, police say. In the latter, the owner of the car declined to press charges, police said.
Henderson's bond and court information were not available Monday.
If convicted of the most serious charge, he faces up to seven years in prison.
Joseph D'Amelio (Suffolk County D.A.)
Last Edited: Saturday, 14 Mar 2009, 11:45 PM EDT
Created On: Saturday, 14 Mar 2009, 11:45 PM EDT
BOSTON (myfoxboston) - An MIT police officer was busted for allegedly picking up a package of 400 prescription painkiller pills while in uniform, the district attorney's office said Saturday.
Joseph D'Amelio, 38, of East Boston, was arrested when he picked up the pills after they were delivered to an East Boston auto garage.
Police said D'Amelio pulled up to Advanced Automotive on London Street in his official marked MIT vehicle at about 6 p.m. to pick up the drugs.
Police said the package contained 340 80 milligram OxyContin tablets and 30 milligram Roxycodone tablets. Police also seized $12,000 in cash.
He was arrested along with Anthony Christallo, 39, of Derry, N.H.
Police were tipped off by security at the FedEx office who were suspicious of the package.
D'Amelio and Christallo were both charged with trafficking in more than 100 grams of OxyContin, an offense that carries a minimum of 10 years and as many as 20 years in state prison.
They will be arraigned Monday in East Boston District Court.
March 23, 2009
Orange City skateboard ramp set ablaze
in dispute, man arrested
PATRICIO G. BALONA
ORANGE CITY -- A Volusia County man who had repeatedly asked that a skateboard ramp be removed from the road near his home set it on fire, sheriff deputies said. Lewis Smith, 45, decided to get rid of the ramp by burning it Sunday, said sheriff spokesman Gary Davidson.
Smith was charged with criminal mishcief and released from the Volusia County Branch Jail on his own recognizance, Davidson said.
The incident occurred at 8:05 p.m. while firefighters were already busy trying to knock down brush fires. They rushed to 17th Street and Central Avenue west of Orange City to douse the flaming ramp in the middle of the road, Davidson said.
Deputies found neighbors and the man who built the ramp arguing with Smith. Neighbors told deputies there had been friction over the skateboard ramp because Smith didn't like it in the road, Davidson said.
While being interviewed by deputies, Smith said he had told the man who built the ramp several times to keep it out of the road then, on Sunday, Smith said he decided to get rid of the problem by using a lighter to set the ramp on fire.
By Jim Patten
March 23, 2009 08:15 am
LAWRENCE — A Methuen man being held for one store robbery is now a suspect in another.
Anthony Whitcomb, 33, of 11 Frederick St., who was accused last week of robbing the Golden House Chinese restaurant, 129 S. Broadway, is facing charges stemming from a robbery at Tesedchi Foods, 208 S. Broadway, on March 4, police said.
The suspect in the Tedesci robbery was captured on the store's security video system, which provided a clear image of his face. The man reached across the counter and scooped the cash from an open register. A store clerk was able to pick Whitcomb's picture out of a photo array shown her by police.
The man who robbed the Golden House used the same technique, police said. He asked for change for a quarter, and once the register drawer opened grabbed the money inside, police said.
Four police officers were having dinner at the time. They chased the robber, who was later identified as Whitcomb.
Whitcomb's nose was broken and his face cut when he resisted being arrested. Two officers were also injured in the scuffle, police said.
At his arraignment Thursday in Lawrence District Court, Judge Barbara Pearson revoked Whitcomb's bail in a Haverhill case and sent him to jail for 60 days. And, she set bail at $10,000 cash on the charges stemming from the restaurant
updated at 17:52 GMT, Monday, 23 March 2009
World's cheapest car is launched
The Tata Nano, the world's cheapest car, has been launched in India.
Costing just 100,000 rupees ($1,979; £1,366), the Nano will now go on sale across India next month, with deliveries starting in July.
Tata hopes the 10-foot (3-metre) long, five-seater car will be cheap enough to encourage millions of Indians to trade up from their motorcycles.
Tata owner Ratan Tata has described the Nano as a "milestone". Analysts say it will not make a profit for six years.
We wanted a find a safe way to transport Indian families at an affordable price
Tata owner Ratan Tata
Tata's managing director Ravi Kant said that from the first orders, a ballot would then select the initial 100,000 people to get their Nano.
"I think we are at the gates of offering a new form of transport to the people of India and later, I hope, other markets elsewhere in the world," Mr Tata added.
"I hope it will provide safe, affordable four-wheel transportation to families who till now have not been able to own a car."
Environmentalists are warning that the Nano will add to India's already clogged up roads, and pollution levels will soar. Tata says the Nano will be the least polluting car in India.
The four-door Nano has a 33bhp, 624cc engine at the rear.
The Tata Nano is unveiled at a press event in India
The basic model has no airbags, air conditioning, radio, or power steering. However, more luxurious versions will be available.
A slightly bigger European version, the Nano Europa is due to follow in 2011, and is expected to cost nearer to £4,000.
I want to be able to take my wife out for a drive in a car - my own car
Indian chauffeur Gopal Pandurang
Analysts said that if the car proves an immediate hit in its home market, Tata may struggle to meet demand.
This is because the main Nano factory in the western state of Gujarat, which will be able to build 250,000 cars a year, is not due to open until next year.
In the meantime, Tata will only be able to build about 50,000 Nanos at its existing plants.
The delay happened when Tata had to abandon plans to build the Nano in a new plant in the eastern state of West Bengal due to a row over land acquired from farmers.
This caused the launch of the Nano to be put back by six months.
Even if Tata can sell 250,000 models a year, it will add only 3% to the firm's revenues, says Vaishali Jajoo, auto analyst at Mumbai's Angel Broking.
"That doesn't make a significant difference to the top line," he said.
"And for the bottom line, it will take five to six years to break even."
Yet with seven million motorcycles sold last year in India, Tata is eyeing a huge marketplace for the Nano.
Like almost all global carmakers, Tata has seen sales fall as the global economic downturn has continued.
The firm made a 2.63bn rupees loss for three months between October and December.
In addition, Tata is struggling to refinance the remaining £2bn of its £3bn loan it took out to buy the Jaguar and Land Rover brands from Ford in June of last year.
Monday, March 23, 2009
(03-23) 08:38 PDT NEW YORK, (AP) --
Ignoring his friends has paid off big for a New York man.
He won $26 million in a Friday the 13th lottery draw.
New York state lottery officials said Monday the winner is from Wyandanch, on Long Island. The identity of the El Salvador native was not revealed.
Officials said the man didn't heed the warnings of well-meaning friends who told him to stay away from the lottery on Friday the 13th.
|Glenn Hartong, The Enquirer|
|Six year-old Pranav Veera, who has a photographic memory and has tested in the very upper ranges of intelligence, poses with letters spelling his name|
He's only 6 years old.
At first glance, Pranav is a typical young boy who is highly competitive at playing Wii video games and likes to play outside. A closer look reveals he's anything but typical.
Pranav has an IQ of 176. One person in 1 million has an IQ of 176 or above. Albert Einstein's IQ was believed to be about 160. The average IQ is 100.
When Pranav was 4-and-a-half, his parents noticed he seemed unusually intelligent while playing with alphabet sets. He could even recall which letters were certain colors.
"That kind of puzzled us," said his father, Prasad Veera. "You have to have not a normal memorization, but some other means of recall."
Now, he loves all kinds of alphabets.
"He loves to collect them, like different colors, different sizes, different materials," said his mother, Suchitra Veera.
The Veeras decided to have Pranav tested three months ago at Powers Educational Services in Hyde Park, Ohio.
"I said, 'Let's try it out, because he seems to do a lot of stuff kind of not quite normal for his age,' " his father said. "He tested 176."
He seems to have a photographic memory, so keeping Pranav engaged and learning is a big challenge for his family.
His mother and grandmother, Shanta Sastri, work with him at home.
They're guided by his focus and interests.
"The way to get him interested is to associate something with numbers, like presidents' birthdays … and when they came into office," his mother said.
"Once we introduced him to the idea, he was asking more and more questions, so we created a spreadsheet for him in Excel, and he keeps on asking us to add more types of information to it, like sort them in the order that they came into office, sort them in the order when they were born," she said.
In prekindergarten, his teacher had him do more challenging work, such as division and telling time. In kindergarten, his classmates are learning the alphabet and numbers up to 100. He's counting over 1 million.
"He's an amazing child," said Marci Taylor, his teacher at McCormick Elementary in the Milford School District. "He knows so much, yet he's probably more excited about learning than any child I've ever seen. He shakes with excitement."
Pranav knows so many incredible things, she said, but what's also impressive is that he's still a 6-year-old boy.
"He loves to go play at recess and climb on the monkey bars," Taylor said.
It's possible that Pranav might eventually have his learning accelerated, even by skipping grades, but his father said they would have to consider that with his social needs. "We want him to be as normal as possible," his father said.
"Right now, it's kind of early, and we can do a lot at home," his mother added. "We have to figure out what works best, because I think it's different for each child."Pranav draws his intelligence from both sides of the family.
His father has a Ph.D. and his mother has two master's degrees.
What does Pranav want to be when he grows up?
"An astronaut," he said without hesitation.
Truly, for Pranav, the sky's the limit.
CLEVELAND (AP) - A landlord is promising two months free apartment rent if its tenants in Ohio, Florida, North Carolina and Texas lose their jobs.
Goldberg Cos. Inc. says layoffs have become the No. 1 concern for prospective renters. In response, the company's "Layoff Proof Lease" program, as it's called, will begin Saturday.
Tenants will qualify after they've signed a 12-month lease and have made three rent payments. Goldberg says when they provide a termination letter or other proof of job loss, they will receive 60 days rent-free, and after that time they may back out of the lease.
Senior vice president Jordan Goldberg says his family's company hopes its offer will attract new tenants to its properties and help retain current ones.
Police said a 35-year-old Spanish man, identified only as JVLL, was arrested and charged with an offense against public health after police seized the package in an international operation coordinated with Venezuela, where the package originated, The Times of London reported Friday.
Investigators said they believe the man was forced to become involved in the cocaine trade by drug traffickers in Venezuela.
Police said the cocaine had been destined for sale in Catalonia, Spain.
By DANNY ROBBINS, Associated Press Writer
Thursday, March 19, 2009
(03-19) 23:42 PDT DALLAS (AP) --
The Dallas school system was rocked by allegations Thursday that staff members at an inner-city high school made students settle their differences by fighting bare-knuckle brawls inside a steel cage.
The principal and other employees at South Oak Cliff High knew about the cage fights and allowed the practice to continue, according to a 2008 report by school system investigators.
"More than anything, I'm in shock and disbelief — shocked that this could ever occur and shocked that it would be condoned by a professional administrator," said Jerome Garza, a member of the Dallas school board.
The report, first obtained by The Dallas Morning News, describes two instances of fighting in an equipment cage in a boys' locker room between 2003 and 2005. It was not clear from the report whether there were other fights.
Superintendent Michael Hinojosa told the newspaper that there were "some things that happened inside of a cage" and called the fights "unacceptable."
No criminal charges were ever filed, and there was no mention in the report of whether anyone required medical attention or whether any employees were disciplined. A district spokesman would not comment.
The allegations came to light during a grade-fixing investigation that eventually cost the high school its 2005 and 2006 state basketball titles. School officials were suspected of altering students' grades so that they could remain eligible to play for South Oak Cliff, a perennial basketball powerhouse in one of the poorer sections of the city.
The newspaper reported Thursday that Angela Williamson, a parent, said she was ignored when she attempted to bring the matter to the attention of district administrators after her son, Cortland, told her that students stood around clapping and screaming while watching a fight he participated in. He and another student fought for five to ten minutes in the cage in 2004. She said the students acted as if they were in an arena.
Williamson said she took her son out of the school and moved to another district shortly after he came home with a swollen hand.
"I said enough is enough, and we just left," she said. "This was the norm. My son said this is what they do — let them fight in 'the cage.'"
She said she met with a football coach who had encouraged the fights.
"He told me this is how they settled disputes in his day," she said.
In an interview with the Morning News, Donald Moten, who retired as principal last year, denied any fights were held.
"That's barbaric. You can't do that at a high school. You can't do that anywhere," Moten said. "Ain't nothing to comment on. It never did happen. I never put a stop to anything because it never happened."
In the report, a teacher was quoted as saying Moten told security personnel to put two fighting students "in the cage and let `em duke it out."
The report said a hall monitor, Gary King, told investigators he witnessed the head of campus security and an assistant basketball coach place two students in the cage to fight.
Another hall monitor, Reno Savala, told investigators he came upon two students fighting in the cage "bare-fisted with no head or eye protection." Savala said the assistant coach was watching the fight and broke it up when Savala told him to.
"It was gladiator-style entertainment for the staff," Frank Hammond, a fired counselor who has filed a whistle-blower lawsuit against the district, told the newspaper. "They were taking these boys downstairs to fight. And it was sanctioned by the principal and security."
Hammond did not actually witness any of the fights, according to the report.
Garza, the school board member, said the board should look into whether criminal charges should be filed.
Dallas police said they have no record of any investigation by the department. The district attorney's office would not comment.
The allegations come about 10 days after law enforcement authorities reported that careworkers at a Corpus Christi institution forced mentally disabled residents to fight each other and recorded the brawls for their entertainment.
Associated Press writer Jeff Carlton contributed to this report.
Penny Batkin, 40, was taking her son, Freddie, 4, to a hospice in Hampton when he began gasping for breath and turning blue, said Richmond Aid, a charity for people with disabilities.
Batkin incurred the ticket by illegally stopping her car on the pavement to resuscitate him. To make matters worse, Batkin said, the Richmond Council's parking office later refused to rescind the ticket even after she explained what had happened, The Daily Telegraph reported Sunday.
Richmond Aid officials say they hope local authorities can find it "in their hearts to rescind a parking fine incurred by a desperate mother who had no choice if she was to save the life of her child"
"We are so appalled we struggle to find words," said one aid official.
Telegraph- UK-Ruben Noe Coronado, 25, from Spain, postponed the process of becoming a man so that he could keep his female reproductive organs and give birth
'He' fell pregnant after undergoing fertility treatment when doctors told his girlfriend, the mother of two children from a previous relationship, she couldn't have any more children.
Mr Coronado, born a woman called Estefania or Stephanie and still considered female under Spanish law, is due to give birth at the end of September.
He is the first Spanish transsexual to fall pregnant and it is thought he will become the world's first transsexual father of twins if everything goes to plan.
He will bring the twins up with his partner Esperanza Ruiz, 43. They plan to marry before they become parents.
Once he becomes a parent he will resume his sex-change surgery and become a father rather than mother.
He plans to give birth at a hospital in Barcelona after moving to the area from Malaga two months ago with his girlfriend because of family problems.
Mr Coronado, an epileptic who was adopted as a child, said: "It's like being born with three hands.
"You take advantage of them while you have them and you get rid of one of them when they get in the way."
He said he would not sell his story "now or in the future", but admitted he was "thinking of selling the picture everyone's going to want of me looking pregnant.
"If I don't do it, someone else will and they'll make a fortune," he added.
He claimed he had gone public "so people start to see a transsexual pregnancy as normal.
Last June Thomas Beatie, a bearded American, made headlines round the world after giving birth to a daughter, Susan Juliette.
The 35-year-old, born as female Tracy Lagondino, is expecting a second child with his wife Nancy this summer
Published: March 20, 2009 at 2:17 PM
SAN DIEGO, March 20 (UPI) -- Authorities in San Diego said drug suspects threw more than $17,000 out of a vehicle during a police chase on a highway in the evening commute hours.
Eileen Zeidler, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, said the chase began at about 5 p.m. Thursday when two men who were under surveillance as part of "a significant drug investigation" drove off in a pickup truck and were pursued by San Diego police and DEA agents, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Friday.
The passenger in the vehicle began throwing money out the window of the vehicle, causing passersby to rush to recover the money. Agents and officers recovered more than $17,000 thrown from the vehicle and a 16-year-old boy later gave police $570 that he had picked up.
Zeidler didn't say how much money the suspects were carrying before they began throwing the cash. She said the suspects were arrested but didn't give any further information on the arrests or the investigation, the Union-Tribune said.
The sources at England's Frome Community College said the teenager was suspended after she brought prescription drugs believed to be Viagra -- which is not licensed for children under age 18 -- to school and gave the erectile dysfuntion pills to fellow students, This Is Somerset reported Friday.
Head teacher Wendy Missions confirmed that a girl was suspended for bringing prescription drugs to school.
"All secondary schools in the country have to deal with drugs issues and we are no exception," she said. "Our line is firm: any drugs on site, be they legal or illegal, results in exclusion from school. There is no place for drug use, talk or culture at or around Frome Community College."
Dr. Geoff Sharp said the drug is unlikely to cause any permanent damage in teenagers.
"If a teenager took one or two of the top dose, it is unlikely to cause harm but could cause a variety of side effects including nausea, indigestion, vomiting, headaches, dizziness and flushing," he said. "Most of these side effects are temporary and would pass within 12 to 24 hours."
Published: March 20, 2009 at 7:48 PM
NAPLES, Italy, March 20 (UPI) -- A neurosurgeon in Italy said he continued performing a brain cancer operation despite suffering a heart attack during the procedure.
Dr. Claudio Vitale, 59, of Naples, said he suffered an angina spasm about halfway through the procedure but he insisted on continuing to remove the brain tumor of his patient, ANSA reported Friday. Vitale's heart episode was confirmed by a blood test.
"I couldn't leave him at such a delicate moment," said Vitale, who underwent his own operation to clear an artery after he was finished with the surgery. "I'm not a hero, I only did my duty."
Vitale was scheduled to be discharged from the hospital Friday and said he hoped to resume work at Cardarelli Hospital as soon as possible.
"I'll have a week off and then I hope they'll let me get back to work," he said.
The surgeon said he was told the cancer patient was recovering.
Last Updated: March 20, 2009
Car that becomes a plane within 30 seconds.
Airport parking will become a thing of the past if the Transition flying car ever catches on.
Telegraph-UK-It can fly for 450 miles at more than 115 mph, can drive at motorway speed on the ground and launches from from road to air in less than 30 seconds.
It runs on unleaded petrol from any normal filling station.
The first Transition took to the air a Plattsburgh in New York State.
The "roadable aircraft" is categorised as a light sport plane and owners will need a sport pilot licence to fly it.
A £7,000 deposit will get you on the list for one of the first production versions being made by Terrafugia of Boston in Woburn, Massachusetts. The full estimated price is around £140,000.
Published: Thursday, March 19, 2009
Arlington church theft blamed on devil
A woman who allegedly defrauded an Arlington church of more than $73,000 said Satan was involved.
ARLINGTON -- She said the devil made her do it.
An Arlington, Washington, woman, 62, told detectives evil was at work when she allegedly forged more than $73,000 worth of checks to herself from the church where she was an administrative assistant.
The woman "guessed that Satan had a big part in the theft," Snohomish County deputy prosecuting attorney Kathy Jo Blake wrote in charging papers filed Wednesday in Snohomish County Superior Court.
The woman worked for the Arlington Free Methodist Church from early 2000 until Feb. 2008 when she was fired, the court papers said.
On June 6, the woman left a teary message for an Arlington police detective admitting she had stolen money from her former employer. During an investigation, police learned that from Jan. 2005 until the end of Feb. 2008, the woman wrote 80 checks worth $73,575.18, the papers said. She allegedly forged the pastor's signature.
The finance chairman of the church had noticed irregularities with the checks and alerted the pastor. Church elders had been reviewing the matter when police contacted the pastor.
The woman told detectives she used the money to cover household expenses. She said she couldn't stand the thought of losing her home, the documents said.
Detectives said the woman seemed relieved the theft was disclosed and she appeared remorseful. She told police she was ready to face the consequences for her actions, the documents said.
The woman tried to enroll in a court program to pay restitution and avoid charges. But the amount she owed far exceeded what she would be capable of paying back in the short amount of time allowed, Blake wrote.
On Wednesday, the woman was charged with first-degree theft, a felony.
Two robbers leaving a south side Milwaukee jewelry store with cash and gems didn't get far with the loot.
Police said a group of robbers met the two as they walked out and robbed them.
According to police Lt. Thomas Welch, a fight broke out in the street before the groups got in vehicles and a chase ensued.
Welch said officers pulled over both vehicles and arrested four people, including the original two robbers, ages 40 and 31, and two men from the second group, of ages 22 and 27. All four are from Illinois.
But he said police didn't recover any cash or jewelry and are searching for more suspects in Wednesday's incident.
There's no immediate estimate of the value of the things taken.
Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Principal in Providence bit, punched by mom, police say
By Linda Borg
PROVIDENCE — The principal of Roger Williams Middle School says he was punched and bitten by a parent in his office Friday afternoon after he told her that her son was being suspended from school.
Aleyda Uceta, 30, of 164 Gallatin St., was charged with assault on school officials, assault on police officers and resisting arrest.
The principal, Rudolph Moseley Jr., said he told Uceta that her 11-year-old son would be suspended for three days, according to a police report. Moseley told the police that she became angry and began yelling at him.
School Department spokeswoman Christina O’Reilly confirmed Monday that Moseley was allegedly assaulted by a parent but declined to provide details.
Moseley repeatedly asked Uceta to lower her voice but she refused, the police said, and Uceta then punched the principal in the face. When Moseley pushed the mother away, her son struck him, according to the police report. Next, Uceta allegedly grabbed Moseley’s left arm and began biting him.
A teacher intervened and began speaking to Uceta in Spanish but Uceta punched her in the face, according to the police.
When officers arrived, they attempted to escort Uceta out of the school but she continued to try to punch Moseley, the police said.
By then, a large crowd of Uceta’s family had gathered, making it difficult for the officers to take her into custody. During the struggle, Uceta bit a patrolman’s arm and struck a patrolman in the face, according to the police. She also kicked another police officer and ripped the pocket out of his jacket.
After Uceta was placed in custody she said, “I’m going to take your gun and shoot all of you,” according to the police report.
While handcuffed and seated on the floor of the school’s main office, Uceta attemped to kick the window panes out of a door, the police said.
Moseley was taken to a hospital for treatment, according to the police. One officer was bitten and another suffered a back injury, the police said.
Yesterday, Moseley said he was fine and that he had no idea what prompted the attack. The 11-year-old boy was suspended from school, he said, because he refused to go to a room where misbehaving students are assigned to cool down. The incident happened around 1 p.m.
“The school is OK,” the principal said. “We’re focusing on teaching and learning.”
Roger Williams is the school where an assistant principal, Robert Perkins, was suspended last week after he stepped on a Dominican flag on Dominican Independence Day. The students had reportedly been running up and down the hallways with the flag. The incident caused an uproar in the Dominican community, which felt that their flag had been dishonored
By MARYELLEN FILLO The Hartford Courant
March 18, 2009
It could be Hartford's version of the War of the Roses as Former United Technologies Corp. President and current board Chairman George David and his estranged wife, Swedish countess Marie Douglas-David, head to court today, bringing their increasingly vicious divorce out in the open.
The wealthy, high-powered couple, who were not able to reach an out-of-court settlement in recent days, will arrive with their respective heavy-hitting legal teams at Hartford Family Court at 10 a.m. with Judge Stephen Frazzini presiding. The two were married in 2002.
Douglas-David's attorneys include Hartford-lawyer Bruce Louden and high profile New York City divorce lawyer William Beslow whose celebrity clients have included Christie Brinkley, Tatum O'Neal and Marla Maples.
David's attorneys include retired Connecticut Appellate Court Judge Anne C. Dranginis and Dara Goings, both with Rome McGuigan in Hartford. Listed on his witness list for the trial is Adria Hillman, who represented business billionaire Ron Perlman in his divorces against former socialite Patricia Duff and actress Ellen Barkin, and actress Beverly D'Angelo when she and Al Pacino fought over custody of their twins.
How to spend $53,000.00 a week like Marie Douglas-David:
Marie Douglas-DavidFinancial Statement:
George David and Marie Douglas-David:
wooden bicycle farmer
Updated: Monday, 16 Mar 2009, 5:53 PM EDT
Published : Monday, 16 Mar 2009, 5:50 PM EDT
PHARR, Texas (AP) - A bank robber in South Texas held up the place from the comfort of his car.
Police said a man used the drive-thru lane Monday morning to rob Lone Star National Bank. Police said the driver slipped a note to a female teller, who provided an undetermined amount of cash, the man then drove away.
Lt. Guadalupe Salinas said the man was alone in the car and did not appear to display a weapon. Salinas told The Associated Press there's no indication that the robbery was an inside job.
Law officers declined to release the contents of the note. Police are reviewing bank surveillance video.
The FBI declined comment.
Senior fends off knife-wielding robber
Posted: March 13, 2009 05:03 PM EDT
Updated: March 13, 2009 03:53 PM MDT
RAPID CITY, S.D.- People with street smarts say ‘don't bring a knife to a gun fight'. But apparently if you are a 71-year-old man, you can substitute an ice scraper for the gun.
A 71-year-old Rapid City man reportedly fended off a robber armed with a knife, early this morning in the 800 block of LeBlanc Street.
Police say the senior was scraping ice off his car when a man pulled out a knife and demanded money. Rapid City Police Sergeant Pete Ragnone said the senior used his ice scraper to fend off the attacker who then fled into a nearby home where his girlfriend lived.
That set off another altercation between the suspect, 20-year-old Talon LaClaire, and his girlfriend.
By the time police showed up with a K-9 team, LaClaire had had enough, surrendering without another altercation.
LaClaire is charged with attempted first degree robbery for his run-in with the senior; and aggravated assault/domestic violence for the argument with his girlfriend. A robbery conviction would net LeClaire up to 25 years in prison. The assault charge is an additional 15 years.
By Matthew Moore
Last Updated: 6:30PM GMT 16 Mar 2009
This extraordinary painting depicting 103 figures from world history in striking detail has become the latest internet hit.
Message boards have erupted with contests to identify all those featured, who range from instantly recognisable figures like Gandhi to some more obscure figures such as Liu Xiang, the Chinese hurdler who limped out of the Beijing Olympics in the summer.
An element of mystery also surrounds that origins of the picture, which appears to have drawn inspiration from Raphael's Renaissance fresco The School of Athens.
While the figures in Raphael's painting were all ancient philosophers, there appears little to connect the characters in the recent work which finds room for historical greats like Napoleon as well as Bill Gates, the bespectacled face of modern success.
But eagle-eyed observers have spotted clues to the painting's provenance in some of those depicted.
Many of the figures in the painting – including Chinese communist leaders and poets – have little profile outside of Asia.
And the inclusion of Juan Antonio Samaranch, the career bureaucrat and former International Olympic Committee chairman would be inexplicable unless the artist came from China, where Mr Samaranch is well-known as the man who awarded Beijing the 2008 Games.
Another clue comes from the three undistinguished men in contemporary dress who survey the scene from behind a wall at the top right of the picture.
Internet detectives have identified these three as little-known Chinese/Taiwanese artists named as Dudu, Li Tiezi, and Zhang An.
They created the oil painting – titled Discussing the Divine Comedy with Dante – in 2006, although it has only become a viral internet hit in the past few weeks.
Alastair Sooke, art writer at The Daily Telegraph, said that the work reflected a trend of contemporary Chinese artists adopting Western styles and subjects.
"But the Dante reference makes us wonder whether we are looking at some nether-circle deep inside the Inferno: this is a vision of Celebrity Hell," he added.
Note: If you click on the link and enlarge the picture and click the larger picture you are able to view entire picture up close. You can also move the picture up, down, east and west to get a better view of the faces.
Updated: March 12, 2009
Lottery Scholarship Available
Published: March 12, 2009
SCHENECTADY - The New York Lottery is accepting applications for the $5,000 Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarship for the 2009-10 academic year.
The scholarship recognizes strong academic achievement as well as a student’s participation in extracurricular activities and his or her demonstrated commitment to community service. The $5,000 scholarship is distributed in payments of $625 per semester and may be applied toward the cost of attendance at any New York State accredited college, university, trade school or community college.
Participating high schools are required to submit the names of two students to the Lottery for consideration. A multidisciplinary selection panel comprised of professional educators, administrators, counselors and other qualified staff then reviews candidate applications and selects a winner. The second nominee may be eligible to receive the scholarship in the event the original recipient cannot accept the award.
Application materials for the scholarship are now available at high schools statewide. Interested students may inquire about the program through their principal’s office or guidance department.
The deadline for schools to return completed applications and accompanying student transcripts to the Lottery for consideration is April 8.
Call 518-525-2686 for more information.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - The Florida Lottery has made a lot of millionaires - some who don't even know it.
The Lottery says nearly $122 million in prizes have gone unclaimed since the games started in 1988. Winners have six months
to claim prizes.
The largest unclaimed payout was a $50 million Lotto ticket sold in a South Florida market in 2003.
The rest of the five largest unclaimed jackpots aren't chump change either - ranging between $10-$20 million.
Most of the unclaimed winnings benefit state schools. The rest goes back into the lottery till.
March seems to be the month when luck develops amnesia. Tickets for three of Florida's largest unclaimed jackpots - a combined $85 million - were sold in March.
March 7, 2009
Police had some help tracking down two burglary suspects this week.
Wayne Blanks, 19, of Fort Myers and Jarvis B. Bowens, 23, of Cape Coral were arrested after police followed a trail of gouges in the pavement left by a stolen safe. The safe had been dragged by a truck from a burglarized home and across several vacant lots to a residence at 2921 NW 27th St., according to Connie Barron, Cape Coral police spokeswoman. Police said Bowens lives at that address.
Bowens and Blanks were charged with armed burglary, motor vehicle theft, 15 counts of grand theft of a firearm and criminal mischief for stealing a large gun safe containing several firearms from a home at NW 26th Terrrace on Tuesday, police said.
A Yamaha dirt bike, flat screen television, laptop computer and a 2005 Ford SUV were also missing from the home, which is owned by Kenneth Staples, according the Lee County Property Appraiser. Staples could not be reached for comment.
Other items were also missing and possibly transported from the location, police said. Police recovered the SUV Friday in a wooded area in the 2900 block of NW 28th Avenue. Blanks and Bowens remain in custody at the Lee County jail.
"While our detectives are really great at what they do, the methods the suspects employed made our job easier," Barron said. She said detectives can't comment further because the investigation is ongoing.
According to reports, Bowens said that Blanks showed up at his home Tuesday dragging the safe behind the Ford SUV, according to police reports. Bowens said he helped unload stolen items from the SUV and placed them in his home.
Blanks initially said he found the SUV loaded with the stolen property in the road near the burglarized residence, with the key in the ignition. Blanks said he abandoned the SUV because he did not want to be caught with a stolen vehicle. He and Bowens broke open the safe and found that it contained several firearms, reports state.
Blanks then asked police if he could revise his statement. He said he acted as lookout during the burglary of the home, and that a third party was involved. Bowens then confirmed that another person was present at his home.
During the investigation, police found large scrape marks that led from the yard of the burglarized residence. The marks appeared to have been caused by dragging the safe from the home to Bowens' address. An independent witness later told detectives that the stolen safe was in the garage of Bowens' residence, police said.
Cape detectives are trying to determine if any other parties were involved.
Jarvis B. Bowens
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
Published: March 14, 2009
NEW YORK - A rare copy of the first comic book featuring Superman has sold for $317,200 in an Internet auction.
The previous owner of Action Comics No. 1 bought it for less than a buck.
It's one of the highest prices ever paid for a comic book, a likely testament to the volume's rarity and its excellent condition, said Stephen Fishler, co-owner of the auction site ComicConnect.com and its sister dealership, Metropolis Collectibles.
The winning bid for the 1938 edition, which features Superman lifting a car on its cover, was submitted Friday evening by John Dolmayan, drummer for the rock band System of a Down, according to managers at ComicConnect.com.
In addition to being a musician, Dolmayan is a dealer of rare comic books. The auctioneers said he acquired the Superman comic on behalf of an unidentified client.
"I imagine it's someone from the entertainment world," said Vincent Zurzolo, chief operating officer at ComicConnect and Metropolis Collectibles.
Only about 100 copies of Action Comics No. 1 are known to exist and they seldom come up for sale.
"Maybe in a booming economy, it would have done a hundred grand more, but in this economy, I think the price is great," Fishler said.
The man who had previously owned the book purchased it in a secondhand store in the early 1950s when he was nine years old.
He paid 35 cents.
The Municipal Court that handles civil, small claims, criminal and traffic cases won't accept new case filings starting Monday because it's almost out of supplies and has no money to re-order.
The court has just enough paper to handle hearing notices and other documents for pending cases, but not new ones, Judge Lee W. McClelland said.
"Basically, unless they want to provide paper, we can't process anything," he said.
The judge sent a memo explaining the problem to local government and law-enforcement officials this week. He said that the county hasn't yet paid the bill for basic supplies the court ordered and had delivered back in November. The purchase orders sent to the county auditor were returned, "indicating that no funds were available to pay them," McClelland wrote.
Morrow County Sheriff Steven R. Brenneman received McClelland's memo. He doesn't understand how a court can refuse to take legal charges.
"We are going to do our job, and if we make arrests or issue citations, we're taking them to the court," Brenneman said. "Whether the court accepts them, I guess that's something they're going to have to deal with."
McClelland also announced that his court, like many other Morrow County government offices hit with budget cuts, will switch to a four-day workweek and be closed on Friday starting the week of March 30. The court will operate 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
Several agencies already have volunteered to bring in enough paper to process their own Municipal Court filings, McClelland said.
"They're still going to issue tickets, and the court is going to be open to take pleas," McClelland said.
State Highway Patrol Lt. Chad McGinty, commander of the Mount Gilead post, said he called McClelland after receiving the memo. He is concerned about what will happen to the patrol's court cases if they cannot be adequately processed.
"When we issue a citation, we aim at changing driving behavior, and that means following that case to the end," McGinty said.
Morrow County Prosecutor Charles Howland declined to comment on the Municipal Court's changes but said that Common Pleas Court still will operate five days a week.
The county, hit by declines in investment income and sales-tax receipts, is operating with roughly $1.2 million less than last year. The general-fund budget dropped from about $7.7 million in 2008 to about $6.5 million this year, according to the county treasurer.
Cuts were the county's only option, Commissioner Olen Jackson said. "There isn't any more," he said. "That's what we have to work with.
Last Updated: 12:31PM GMT 14 Mar 2009
Telegraph- UK--Timothy Mcleod, 46, got away with a television set and a jacket, but left the hanky at the scene when he got it out to blow his nose.
The serial crook was caught by police after they examined the handkerchief and found traces of his DNA.
Mcleod, who had a string of previous convictions for burglary, has now been jailed for two-and-a-half years.
PC Catherine Stacey, who investigated the case, said: "He was caught through DNA identification after he left a handkerchief in the kitchen.
"He had a hanky with him and he was stupid enough to leave it behind."
Mcleod was on licence from a four-year prison sentence when the burglary took place in Portsmouth, Hants, on October 14 last year.
Just eight days earlier he had broken into another home in the city and stolen jewellery.
Judge Roger Hetherington told Portsmouth Crown Court he had no choice but to send Mcleod to jail.
He said: "My primary duty must be to reflect that you have committed these further offences.
"I would be failing in my duty if I allowed the public to be put at risk by giving you a community order."
Pc Stacey, from Hampshire Constabulary, was pleased with the sentence.
She said: "Police are very pleased with the prison sentence imposed against this career criminal for the serious offence of dwelling burglary.
"The sentence sends out the message to people who commit this type of crime that they will be dealt with robustly."
Detective Inspector Nigel Oliver added: "It's a pretty robust sentence and I think it's the appropriate sentence for his offences."
Mcleod, from Portsmouth, admitted two counts of burglary and a further offence of handling stolen goods.
Man unwisely tries to rob Tae Kwon Do Studio
Fri Mar 13, 9:18 pm ET
FOX POINT, Wis. – A robber gets more than he bargained for when he targeted a Tae Kwon Do studio in suburban Milwaukee. The robber thought he could quietly slip in and out of David Kang's studio in Fox Point with some loot. What he didn't realize is that he would encounter a Tae Kwon Do master who wasn't about to let him off the hook.
Kang was giving a private lesson Tuesday and heard someone in his office. Kang found the man going through his closet, grabbed him by the neck and sat him down while he called police.
The robber took off and Kang gave chase, finally catching up with the man and holding him by the neck until police arrived.
Information from: Fox 6 WITI-TV
Bail set for woman who drugged a vet
Last Update: 11:16 am
A woman is in jail after police say she drugged her boss. Police say an employee from the Reynolds Road Animal Clinic slipped valium into one of the veterinarians cups of coffee sending him to the emergency room.
Shortly after Dr. John Duckett had some, coffee he knew something was wrong. Employees at the clinic tell police they thought he was having a heart attack, but it turns out he had been drugged by one of his own. There are certain things you expect to find in your morning cup of Joe like sugar and creamer, but not drugs.
Veterinarian Dr. John Duckett knew something didn't feel right while working Tuesday morning at the Reynolds Road Animal Clinic in Bryant. That's when someone from the clinic called 911.
"He knew he hadn't taken any medication, he hadn't taken any prescription pills. He had suspected that he had been poisoned at his office," says Todd Crowson with the Bryant police.
Now 24-year-old Erin Kelly is behind bars after telling police she drugged Duckett because, “he needed to chill out.”
"She came in this morning and we talked with her and she ended up telling us what happened, pretty much confessing," Crowson said. “She actually admitted to putting a substance in his coffee which turned out to be a benzodiapine.”
Benzodizapines, like valium, are tranquilizers. They can reduce inhibitions, typically used for reducing stress or anxiety. We're told Kelly worked at the clinic cleaning cages. Now she's in one.
"I have never seen anything like this happen. This is the first time I've worked anything like this," said Crowson.
FOX16 spoke to Dr. Duckett on the phone but he didn't want to comment on what happened.
Kelly's bond has been set at $25,000. Saline County Prosecutor Ken Casady asked for bond to be set at $100,000. Kelly's next court appearance is April 21st at 1PM.
The microwave oven, aka the "Popcorn and Hot Pockets Warmer," was a happy accident that came from, of all things, a weapons program.
Percy LeBaron Spencer was a self-educated engineer working on radar technology in the years following WWII. The technology in question was the sci-fi sounding magnetron, a piece of machinery capable of firing high intensity beams of radiation.
Above: a scientist, with robot.
Apparently, P.L.S., as some have called him, had a bit of a sweet tooth. Or a strange fetish. Either way, he had a candy bar in his pants while he was in the lab one day. The self-proclaimed engineer noticed that the chocolate bar had melted when he was working with the magnetron.
Spencer disregarded the simple idea that his body heat had melted the chocolate in favor of the less logical and therefore more scientific conclusion that invisible rays of radiation had "cooked it" somehow.
A sane man would stop at this point and realize these magical heat rays were landing just inches from his tender scrotum. Indeed, most of the military experts on hand probably dreamed of the battlefield applications of their new Dick-Melting Ray. But like all men of science, Spencer was fascinated and treated his discovery like a novelty. He used it to make eggs explode and pop kernels of corn ("Imagine, a future where a building full of workers in cubicles eat this all day!")
I proclaim myself to be awesome.
Spencer continued to experiment with the magnetron until he boxed it in and marketed it as a new way to cook food. The initial version of the microwave was roughly six feet tall, weighed in around 750 pounds and had to be cooled with water. But they got it down to size, and today we use it mostly to destroy random objects on YouTube.
The story goes that in 1942, Dr. Harry Coover was working for Eastman Kodak, a company renowned for cameras and camera-related things. His job was to find a plastic that could be used as a clear gunsight, since this was smack in the middle of WWII and everybody knew where the money was.
Coover got frustrated because the material, called cyanoacrylate, was just too damned sticky. Rather than noticing he accidentally made one of the most versatile adhesives of all time, he threw it away in a huff and continued sweating over gunsights for a war that would be ended, ironically, by two bombs with blast radiuses so big that they didn't even require sights at all.
Years later, Coover would re-discover his invention, we prefer to think due to him noticing that old container of cyanoacrylate was still stuck to the bottom of his trash can and couldn't be removed by any means.
In 1958, after finally convincing his bosses that at the very least, there was enormous comedic potential in the prospect of a man getting his hand permanently stuck to his junk; Kodak released the glue with the catchy name "Eastman 910."
Somebody then decided to actually pay the marketing guys to do something, and they decided the best way to convince people to buy this new product was to suspend a car over a public street with a crane, supposedly held up only with the ol' 910.
Reactions resulted in the product being coined "Krazy Glue"; a product so crazy that it requires intentional misspelling. The early slogan, "Remember, you can only use it once before it completely solidifies in the tube!" was quickly dropped and it remains a top-selling product to this day.
You probably won't be shocked to find out that the inventor of tire rubber is Charles Goodyear, as he's the first guy on the list to actually get his name attached to the end product (since "Coover Glue" sounds like a gruesome form of birth control).
It wasn't easy coming up with a form of rubber tough enough to withstand the drag racing and car chases everyone envisioned the day the automobile was invented. In fact, if there was one man who should have given up his life dream, it was Goodyear. The man spent time in and out of prison, lost every friend he had and starved his children in his tireless pursuit of a stronger form of rubber.
"There's got to be a better way."
It was the 1830s, a period of time known for sucking. After his first two years of tinkering and failing with primitive rubber, Goodyear and his family were camping out in an abandoned factory and fishing for sustenance. This is when he made a huge breakthrough: He'd use acid to smooth out and toughen rubber! The government bought 150 mailbags made of the stuff and the rest is...
Oh, wait. They were all defective. The process didn't work and Goodyear was ruined. Again.
Finally in 1839, probably after being struck by lightning and/or being pissed on by a pack of stray dogs, Goodyear wandered into a general store with another failure of a formula. The crowd watched. Then they laughed at him. In a rage, he began to shake his fist, flinging a piece of his rubber onto the hot stove top.
After inspecting the charred remains, he realized that he had just found a way to make durable, weatherproof rubber. Despite what we're sure were numerous failed "now let's try setting this on fire to see if it improves it!" experiments, an empire was born.
Safety glass is the glass that's used in cars and buildings and almost everywhere you look. The idea is that when it shatters, like when a bad guy goes through it back-first because you blasted him with a shotgun, it doesn't break into shards that can cut his skin on the way through. Frenchman, Edward Benedictus, was a jack-of-all-trades, er, Jaques-of-all-trades. Before stumbling across an incredible invention, Benedictus was already a classical quadruple threat. That is to say he was a painter, composer, writer and chemist.
One day, in a potentially Clouseau-like manner, Edward knocked a scientific flask off of a shelf and heard it crash to the ground (we like to imagine that he shouted "sacre bleu!" upon hearing the impact). When Benedictus climbed down from his ladder, he noticed that the flask was broken, but had not actually shattered.
After asking one of his aides about the incident, he found that the flask had recently contained cellulose nitrate, which acted as an adhesive and held the shattered pieces of glass together.
Though he knew he had something, Benedictus didn't really know what he had. Then inspiration struck in the form of a rash of horrifyingly gruesome car accidents. Benedictus noticed that the more horrific injuries from these crashes were due to flying shards of windshield.
Then he set to work until he eventually developed Triplex (not pronounced triple x). When we say eventually, we mean 24 hours later. After taking notice of the durability of his new invention in the gas masks of WWI, the automotive industry began making the Triplex windshield the standard, as angry, sledgehammer-wielding ex-girlfriends the world over can attest to.
As researchers go, Sir Alexander Fleming is one of the greats. But the man was a slob. Years before he became famous for discovering Penicillin, he accidentally conducted a study based around some snot of his that fell into a Petri dish.
Six years later, the good Mr. Phlegm-ing, as he was affectionately known, was once again working in the lab with a plastic dish filled with disease. The Doc (another nickname) left the lab for a weekend without cleaning the filthy dishes that were scattered around.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- Police have arrested an unlikely suspect in the armed robbery of an eastern Omaha bar - a 12-year-old boy. Police said the boy is one of three people suspected of holding up the California Bar early Thursday morning.
TOKYO (AFP) – A Japanese man who set fire to a hotel in a bid to buy himself time to chose whether to stay with his wife or marry his girlfriend was sentenced to five years jail Thursday, a court official said.
Presiding Judge Yasushi Watanabe called 40-year-old defendant Tatsuhiko Kawata "egoistic and short-sighted" and dismissed the defence argument that no-one was hurt in the fire, the Kyodo news agency reported.
Kawata, who had been married to his wife since 1994, had also been seeing another woman for about three years and promised to marry her last October at the Risonare hotel in the mountain resort of Hokuto, Yamanashi Prefecture.
However, on the eve of the ceremony, the still-married Kawata sought to delay the ceremony by spilling seven litres of petrol in the hotel and setting it on fire, causing minor damage and forcing the evacuations of several guests.
Prosecutors had sought six years' prison for Kawata, who pleaded guilty to the charges of arson and unauthorized entry to the hotel, a Kofu District Court official told AFP.
Matt Lysiak and Carrie Melago
DAILY NEWS WRITERS
Wednesday, March 11th 2009, 2:18 AM
THIS IS ONE construction project that's simply to die for.
A Brooklyn funeral director is looking for a reliable contractor to put an addition on his apartment - in exchange for a free funeral package.
Peter Dohanich, 51, concedes some might view his ad on craigslist as "bizarre," but he thinks it's savvy, not spooky.
"These are tough times, and people don't have the money," Dohanich said. "I'm sure that there are contractors with elderly or terminally ill parents and are worried about how to cover the costly expenses of a funeral."
Dohanich, who is licensed in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, is looking for a trustworthy contractor to build a 300-square-foot "sitting room" off the living room of his ground-floor apartment in midtown.
In return, Dohanich would provide a full funeral - cremation or burial, embalming, a coffin, viewing, church service, even a hearse and limo for loved ones.
"It may sound like a laughable barter transaction, but consider the average cost of paying for a funeral," he wrote in the ad. "Ask someone that recently had a funeral what they paid!"
Jessica Koth, a spokeswoman for the National Funeral Directors Association, said she has heard of a few funeral homes bartering their services, and her organization has no problem with it.
"This is a very creative solution," Koth said.
Robert Meyer, editor of BarterNews, said more and more businesses could try swapping services as the economy continues to struggle.
"I don't see it as distasteful one bit," Meyer said. "I think it's admirable to offer one's services for another. It's legal and profitable, too."
Meyer recommends that people bartering services draft a written contract and "treat it exactly as you would a cash business agreement."
Dohanich, who has run his Brooklyn funeral home for more than 25 years, said the offer could ease the mind of someone who otherwise might consider a burial in Potter's Field for a loved one.
"Everyone has to adapt to the times," he said, "even funeral directors."
1:50 PM EDT
March 11, 2009
TAMARAC - A 4-year-old at a Tamarac preschool caused a furor when police say he pulled a plastic bag of pot from his book bag and casually told a classmate, "That's my brother's weed."
Authorities say the incident occurred Friday at Tamarac Preschool, at 6801 W. Commercial Blvd.
Teacher Iris Dasilva, 45, of Coral Springs, checked the child's bookbag and found two more small resealable bags filled with marijuana, according to the report.
Dasilva called the Broward Sheriff's Office and the child abuse hotline.
According to the Sheriff's Office, the preschooler initially told investigators his older brother, 21, hid the drug in the book bag. The boy later said he found it on a table in his brother's room, the report said.
The boy's mother, whose name was not released, told investigators she had never found marijuana in her house and that there was none in the bookbag when she packed it.
Neither Dasilva nor the preschool's director could be reached this morning.
The event sparked a policy change at the preschool: A sign on the front door on Wednesday said, "We no longer allow backpacks or bookbags."
A Sheriff's Office deputy and an investigator for the Department of Children and Family Services conducted a visit to the child's home and found it clean, in order, with plenty of food, the police report said. The investigation is continuing.
The marijuana was scheduled to be destroyed, the report said.
ATLANTA — A would-be burglar is in jail after he climbed through a hole in the roof of an Atlanta liquor store and then couldn't get back out.
Police and the owner of Azar's Package Store found 29-year-old Adam Hardeman early Tuesday hiding in a store restroom with playing cards, lighters and a bottle of gin in his pockets.
Authorities say the man got inside by moving a rooftop air conditioner and dropping through the hole.
Once inside, he couldn't climb back up, and burglar bars kept him from getting out windows or doors.
Police say Hardeman was arrested and is charged with burglary and damage to property.
Police do not know if Hardeman has an attorney.
Atlanta Journal Constitution
March 10, 2009 - 1:49 p.m. EDT
PHILADELPHIA (CBS 3) ?
A Philadelphia pet shop expecting a shipment of exotic fish instead received a much more disturbing delivery Tuesday.
Philadelphia Police were called to Pets Plus USA on the Roosevelt Boulevard after reports of a large package containing the body of a man in his 60s.
Mark Arabia of Pets Plus USA said an employee attempted to pick up a delivery of exotic fish from US Airways Monday night, but was turned away when he could not provide correct identification.
A second attempt to pickup up the delicate sea creatures was made Tuesday morning, but this time the wrong package was loaded into the delivery vehicle.
After returning to the pet store, it was discovered the package was not aquatic life, but the body of Jon Kenoyer from Santee, California. The 65-year-old died of Alzheimer's on Friday.
"Instead of fish, they sent us a dead person," Arabia said.
Kenoyer's body was apparently intended for a research company Lifequest in Allentown. His wife donated his body to the facility to study Alzheimer's.
"At first, I was in the state of shock that they messed up to begin with, I wondered where he was going or how he got there," Kenoyer's widow Mary Ellen said. "And then I started to laugh because he was one that always did practical jokes and I said this was the last joke on us."
US Airways officials said the incident was an unfortunate mistake and released the following statement:
"Regrettably, there was an unfortunate mix up today (Tuesday) at the US Airways Cargo facility near Philadelphia International Airport. The mix up occurred due to a verbal miscommunication between a delivery driver and the cargo representative. We are working to rectify the situation and are deeply sorry for the inconvenience this has caused."
Kenoyer's body was eventually sent to Lifequest.
The fish are not believed to have survived the mishap. The incident remains under investigation.
A spokesman for the Three Rivers Casino and Hotel in Florence said the Hillsboro, Ore., woman had been playing the Penny Wheel of Fortune machine, which is networked to a number of machines throughout the West Coast and allows for large payoffs by a building a percentage from all play on the machines, KPTV, Portland, Ore., reported Tuesday.
The woman said the Wheel of Fortune symbols lined up and the machine instructed her to call for an attendant after she had been in the casino for less than one hour.
The spokesman said the woman's payout, $5,284,316, topped the previous record for a slot machine at the casino, $1.3 million in 2005.
The Florida Times-Union
Story updated at 4:51 AM on Tuesday, Mar. 10, 2009
Jacksonville, FL --A man arrested with 17 pot plants in the bed of his pickup told police he was moving them to protect them from burglars who hit his house the night before.
Smith told police he grew the plants and was moving them due to the earlier burglary.
A man driving the truck, Raymond S. Rhude, 32, of the 1900 block of Thomas Drive, was charged with felony pot possession. He told police he was driving the truck only because Smith’s license was suspended.
Jennifer Morris, 36, was arrested Sunday at 7:09 p.m. at her 38 Kendall Ave. home, a day after authorities say she stole the purse, which contained the other mother's cell phone and digital camera with all the photos of her triplet newborns.
A friend told police Morris tried to sell her the camera and cell phone to get money to buy crack, said police spokesman Lt. Paul Shastany.
On Saturday, the victim, whom police identified only as a 49-year-old woman, called the station at 5:45 p.m. to report the theft.
Officers reviewed security camera footage and saw a woman, later identified as Morris, take the purse off a coat rack and leave the maternity ward.
Another camera shows her trying to use a bank card taken from the purse at an ATM in the lobby, but she was thwarted because she did not know the PIN police said.
A few minutes later, she came back to the maternity ward and threw the purse away, Shastany said.
Officers found the purse, but the victim's cell phone and digital camera were gone.
Police then questioned Morris, who recently gave birth to a baby girl.
"She said she didn't do anything," said Shastany, but after being told they saw her on camera, she changed her story. "She said, 'Yeah, I stole it. I took the camera and phone."'
Morris said she sold the camera to another woman. Police contacted that woman, whom they did not identify, who told them she sold the items to someone else.
"Her words were Morris phoned her and said she had a camera and a cell phone she wanted to trade for crack or to sell," Shastany said.
Police arrested Morris after she was released from the hospital.
Morris was charged with larceny of property worth more than $250, malicious mischief and larceny from a building.
Morris pleaded not guilty at her Framingham District Court arraignment yesterday and was ordered held on $3,000 bail.
If she does not post bail, she will be held at MCI-Framingham until at least March 23, when she is scheduled to return to court for a pretrial conference.
Police have yet to find the stolen camera and cell phone, Shastany said. The victim declined comment. The woman who Morris told police she sold the items to will be summoned to court, the lieutenant said.
Sheboygan Press Staff
March 7, 2009 Kristopher G. Lehnhardt
A 34-year-old Sheboygan man was charged Friday after allegedly leaving his library card behind while stealing beer from a Plymouth tavern.
Kristopher G. Lehnhardt, of 812 Pennsylvania Ave., Apt. 4, could face up to 18 months in jail, if convicted on misdemeanor counts of theft and property damage.
According to a criminal complaint:
A bartender at Cozy Bar, 116 E. Mill St., called police about 2:30 a.m. Feb. 22 after discovering lights on, a cooler open and a window screen cut in the basement.
She also found Lehnhardt's Mead Public Library card on the floor by a door, where it appeared to have been used in an attempt to unlock the door.
Missing were four cases of Miller Lite and six cans of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer.
A friend of Lehnhardt's told police Lehnhardt admitted taking the beer and putting it outside to pick it up later.
The tongue of the chief coffee taster for a worldwide chain of coffee shops has been insured for $14 Million.
Gennaro Pelliccia personally tastes a sample of each batch of raw coffee beans at its London plant before they are roasted and shipped to its stores.
"My 18 years of experience enable me to distinguish between thousands of flavours," he says.
Costa Coffee, which sells 108 million cups of coffee worldwide each year, aims to double its number of outlets.
The insurance policy was taken out with Lloyds of London.
"The taste buds of a Master of Coffee are as important as the vocal cords of a singer or the legs of a top model, and this is one of the biggest single insurance policies taken out for one person," said a spokesman for Lloyd's broker Glencairn Limited, which arranged the insurance cover.
"In my profession, my taste buds and sensory skills are crucial," Pelliccia said. "My 18 years of experience enable me to distinguish between thousands of flavors. My taste buds also allow me to distinguish any defects, which enables me to protect and guarantee Costa's unique Mocha Italia blend."
While competitor Starbucks has been forced to close hundreds of locations around the world, Costa officials said their company has thus far evaded any recession-powered downturn and reported positive sales growth this year.
A spokesman for Glencairn, the Lloyd's broker handling the policy, said Pelliccia's insurance trumps the $4.8 million policy taken out for singer Bruce Springsteen's voice.
"The taste buds of a 'master of coffee' are as important as the vocal chords of a singer or the legs of a top model, and this is one of the biggest single insurance policies taken out for one person. It shows how valuable Gennaro's tongue is to the Costa brand," the spokesman said.
A BRAVE dad who accidentally stuck himself to his kitchen floor with a NAILGUN laughed off his gruesome ordeal.
Billy Allan, 39, was checking his powerful Max Superframer gun when he slipped and fired a four-inch nail through his hand.
His nine-year-old daughter found him. Mercy crews took 90 minutes to cut him free and get him to hospital, and two male nurses had to hold him steady while a doctor bashed the nail out with a hammer.
''The doctor said it was like something out of a cartoon,'' Billy told the Record.
''Everyone seems to find it funny and even I can laugh about it. But not too hard - any sudden movement and my hand really throbs.''
Billy works as a fencer and checks his nailgun every night to make sure it's working for the next day.
He's an expert with the gun and even completed a course recently in how to handle it safely.
But things went badly wrong when he tried to check it on Thursday night.
Billy, of Fauldhouse, West Lothian, said: ''I was watching Red Riding on Channel 4, and when there was an ad break just before 11 o'clock I remembered I hadn't checked my gun.
''It only takes a few seconds but as I got up I must have slipped and knocked the battery pack into place and the gun fired with my hand under it.
''At first I didn't feel anything but when I tried to move my hand it was really sore.''
Billy shouted for help but his wife Yvonne, 36, was sound asleep.
Luckily, daughter Naomi heard his cries. She came downstairs, saw Billy pinned to the floor and ran to wake her mum, who called 999.
''The paramedics were pretty quick,'' Billy added. ''They gave me gas and air to ease the pain but I could feel my hand swelling and the skin was getting tighter and tighter as if a hook was being dragged into it.
''They said the best thing would be to cut out a bit of the floor and take me to hospital. They said it was a job for the fire service.''
A fire crew arrived to cut Billy free and the medics took him to Wishaw General.
The doctor removed the nail from the web of his right hand, bandaged him up and gave him a tetanus jab.
''It took three good hard blows to get the nail out and it was damn sore,'' Billy said.
''Afterwards, they gave me the nail back in a bottle.
'I've learned a painful lesson. I'll be off work for two weeks at least.
''And I didn't even get to see the end of my TV program. I was nailed to the floor for the last 10 minutes.''
Inmate caught breaking back into jail with stolen smokes
WOODBINE, Ga. -- Police say a south Georgia inmate was arrested this morning as he tried to sneak back into jail with 14 packs of stolen cigarettes.
Camden County Sheriff Tommy Gregory said Harry Jackson, 25, was spotted and arrested as deputies investigated a 1:55 a.m. breakout and the burglary of a nearby convenience store.
Mr. Jackson was in jail on a variety of drug charges.
“We thought we had two separate incidents. By the time we locate this guy, he’s one and the same,’’ the sheriff said.
Jail personnel suspected someone had broken out when a detention officer routinely checking doors found one to be unlocked that had been secure a few minutes earlier. As officers tried to determine who was missing, patrol deputies responded to an alarm at the Snappy Foods store about a block away, the sheriff said.
Meanwhile back at the jail, a deputy saw the shadow of a man trying to stealthily get into the jail. The man was arrested and found to be an inmate carrying about 14 packs of cigarettes, Sheriff Gregory said.
“When I took office Jan. 1, there were rumors that inmates were using wire off brooms to pop these electronic locks,’’ the sheriff said. “It turned out to be true.’’
The inmates were suspected of leaving through a recreation room door and getting out into the exercise yard where they could pick up contraband tossed over the fence, Sheriff Gregory said.
In fact, the sheriff said he suspects that played a role in the breakout.
The inmate was to have gone into the exercise yard and picked up cigarettes which are no longer allowed inside the jail, but found none. Having been told by other inmates to not come back without cigarettes, he climbed the fence and made his way to Snappy Foods.
There he broke a window, got into the store and took the cigarettes. As he tried to get back with the cigarettes, he was caught.
Jail cameras showed other inmates acting suspiciously and investigators are interviewing other inmates to determine if others were involved in a conspiracy, Sheriff Gregory said.
Lisa Pagan is shown at her home in Davidson, N.C., Friday, Feb. 27, 2009.
A North Carolina mother who reported for Army duty with her two young children said Friday she is happy and relieved that the military granted her an honorable discharge.
Lisa Pagan was back home in Davidson on Friday after spending a week at Fort Benning, waiting to learn if she would be put on active duty, possibly facing a tour in Iraq or Afghanistan.
In her first interview since leaving Fort Benning, Pagan said it was "nice to be home."
"After I was told I could leave, my first thought was: God finally answered my prayers. I've been going to church every weekend and saying my prayers. I'm just going to let this set in. I know what I did was controversial, but it was something I had to do," she said.
Pagan had been fighting the Army since she was recalled to active duty in November 2007, saying she had no one to care for her children.
A former truck driver in the Army, Pagan was recalled four years after being released from active duty, which is allowed under the military's "individual ready reserve" program.
Attorney Mark Waple said Pagan was discharged due to family hardship. An Army spokesman at Fort Benning confirmed Pagan was discharged Friday, but declined to say what kind of discharge she received or comment on why the Army let her go.
Soldiers can appeal, and nearly a third have won permission to remain in civilian life. Pagan filed several appeals, arguing that because her husband travels for business, no one else can take care of her kids. Her appeals were rejected.
So she reported for duty Monday at Fort Benning, Ga., with her children, 4-year-old Elizabeth and 3-year-old Eric.
Her children spent the week in an Army day care center, while she was processed for active duty — filling out paperwork and undergoing medical tests. But from the time she arrived, she said she believed she would be discharged.
"My commander was very supportive," she said.
Waple agreed, saying the commanders at Fort Benning were "a breath of fresh air."
"When Lisa and her husband made the decision she would comply with her orders to go and report to Fort Benning, the jurisdiction in her case changed from the reserve command in St. Louis to the command at Fort Benning. And evidently, they took a closer look at the situation and made the right decision," he said.
Pagan is among thousands of former service members recalled after leaving duty since the Sept. 11 attacks because they're on "individual ready reserve" status, meaning they have time left on their original enlistment contracts and can be recalled at any time.
Master Sgt. Keith O'Donnell, an Army spokesman in St. Louis, has said that of the 25,000 individual ready reserve troops recalled since September 2001, more than 7,500 have been granted deferments or exemptions.
About 1,000 have failed to report, and most of those cases are still under investigation, he said. Another 360 soldiers have been separated from the Army either through "other than honorable" discharges or general discharges.
Pagan, who held the rank of specialist, said she was worried about receiving a dishonorable discharge.
On the roughly six-hour drive home, she said she so happy she called her husband, who was on a business trip in Ohio, to share the good news.
"He was excited," she said. "Now we can focus on other things. The whole thing has been stressful. I'm just glad it's over," she said.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
1:43 p.m. March 7, 2009
SAN MARCOS — The bookkeeper for a North County manufacturing business was arrested on accusations of embezzling nearly $10 million from her employer to fund her lavish shoe collection, remodel her home, vacation in Italy and gamble, authorities said.
Sheriff's investigators say Annette Yeomans, 51, siphoned an average of $100,000 a month from Quality Woodworks, Inc., while she was chief financial officer from 2001 to 2007.
As a result, the San Marcos cabinetry business was forced to lay off employees and restructure their operations, said Sgt. Mark Varnau of the sheriff's Financial Crimes Unit.
Yeomans surrendered to authorities Friday morning and was booked into Vista jail on $10 million bail on suspicion of grand theft and embezzlement. It was unclear Saturday whether Yeomans had hired an attorney.
A nearly yearlong sheriff's investigation revealed that Yeomans would spend $25,000 on her credit card each week and then pay off the balance the following Monday with company funds.
Her purchases include spending nearly $25,000 to remodel her closet to house about 400 pairs of shoes valued at $240,000, as well as 160 designer purses valued at $2,000 each.
The posh dressing room included a crystal chandelier, granite-topped center island and 32-inch plasma television, Varnau said.
Investigators also found that Yeomans gambled heavily at local casinos and lost extensive amounts of money.
Varnau said Yeomans, who is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Vista Superior Court, was able to hide her alleged crime from the company due to her position of trust.
But that ended when American Express noticed the pattern of payments made with company checks and made a phone call to the business.
Yeomans was fired last year and agreed to turn over her assets to the company, which has recovered about $2 million from the sale of her home, some cars and other property, Varnau said. Her husband was a cabinet installer at Quality Woodworks but was not suspected of any crime, Varnau said.
Truck driver releases video: dancing in his cab as he speeds along motorway
A Romanian truck driver is being hunted by police after releasing a video of himself dancing in his cab as he thunders along a motorway.
Last Updated: 4:19PM GMT 06 Mar 2009
The driver - who apparently works all over Europe and the UK - handed the recording to a TV station and You Tube after filming his antics for friends.
As he cranks up the volume on a folk song, the trucker starts thrashing around the cab, waving both hands with barely a glance at the road ahead.
Then he unfastens his seat belt so he can gyrate around the driver's seat, before moving over to the passenger footwell to dance away from the control pedals and steering wheel.
At one point, he even steers with his feet, showing off for the camera as he drives terrifying close to other trucks and cars.
He says: "I was just bored, this wasn't anything special. We all do this - we sing, while we're driving."
Copies of the tape are now being viewed by traffic poilce officers throughout Europe as they try to track down the driver.
He claims the performance was shot by his brother as they drove from Holland to Belgium. Others believe the dance might have been recorded in France.
Romanian police want to interview the trucker after he appeared on a local You've Been Framed-style television show.
"He doesn't seem to be driving in Romania so what we can do is limited but we certainly want to talk to him," said a senior officer.
March 6, 2009
HAYDEN, Idaho — A utility has reimbursed a northern Idaho couple nearly $2,000 after sending them someone else's gas bill for more than three years. Avista Corp. spokeswoman Debbie Simock said the company has also offered an apology to Don and Penny Fisher. "It was ridiculous," Don Fisher told the Coeur d'Alene Press. "Even in the hot months it was riding up and we were paying for it."
The Fishers said they built fires and bundled up but continued to get big gas bills for three years and three months. They said their inquiries to Avista didn't get results.
"Argue, argue, argue," the couple said.
They said they reported a fake gas leak in January to get a visit from a company representative, who discovered that meter readings in the subdivision had been crossed.
The Fishers said they had to skimp on three Christmases due to their nearly $500 in winter gas and electric bills.
"It was ridiculous," Don Fisher said. "We could not be using that much gas."
"We're very sorry that this happened," said Simock. "We're taking a look at our internal process to make sure this doesn't happen again."
Simock said the company didn't have a report of a gas leak at the home, but instead sent someone to check on problems with the meter after getting details of the problem.
The Fishers said one of their bills was for $238, while the neighbor who was paying their bill was charged $28.
"Everyone was wondering how they kept their house so warm," Don said. "And even they didn't know."
Simock said that under Idaho Public Utilities Commission rules, Avista could bill the second customer for the last six months for energy used but not charged for.
But she said the company is not going to bill that customer.
"Because the error was our fault, we are not going to rebill the customer for six months," she said.
Spokane, Wash.-based Avista serves 121,000 electric and more than 93,000 natural gas customers in Idaho.
In this photo released by Spanish Police, shows a 66-year-old Chilean man who tried to smuggle drugs into Barcelona airport with a cast made of cocaine is seen after his arrest in Barcelona Spain on Wednesday, March 4, 2009. (AP Photo/Spanish
MADRID - Spanish police have arrested a 66-year-old Chilean who tried to smuggle drugs into Barcelona with a cast made of cocaine fitted on a truly broken leg, an official said Friday.
The man also had cocaine hidden in six beer cans that had been emptied, packed with drugs and resealed, and inside the legs of two small folding stools, police said. Altogether, he was carrying about 5 kilograms (11 pounds) of the drug, police said.
The man was arrested Wednesday at Barcelona's El Prat airport after arriving from Santiago, Chile.
His left shin was broken, and investigators do not rule out the possibility that the injury was inflicted intentionally so he could smuggle with the cocaine cast.
Spain is a major European gateway for cocaine from Latin America and airport officials pay especially close attention to passengers on flights from Peru, Colombia and Chile, police spokesman Jose Antonio Nin said.
Nin said he knew of cases in which smugglers had concealed cocaine underneath casts but this was the first time officials had seen a cast made entirely of compressed cocaine. It weighed about a kilogram (2.2 pounds), he said.
Police detected the drug by spraying the cast with a chemical that turns bright blue when it comes in contact with cocaine, Nin said. The man was taken to a hospital after the cast was removed.
FAIRFIELD -- A sticky-fingered Stratford man has been charged with stealing hundreds of packs of a particular chewing gum from area stores.
Kenneth McManus, 21, of Kings Row, surrendered to police after being told there was a warrant for his arrest on a charge of fourth-degree larceny.
He is already charged with two counts of sixth-degree larceny for similar thefts in Bridgeport and Stratford.
He is free after posting $100 bond.
McManus appears to have a craving for Orbit gum, which he has allegedly stolen in each instance, police said.
In a Jan. 22 incident, McManus is accused of stealing 175 packs of gum valued at more than $500 from the Shaw's supermarket on Black Rock Turnpike here.
Police said McManus was recorded on the supermarket's surveillance camera stuffing the individual packs of gum into his coat pockets and then leaving the store.
Three days earlier, he was charged with stealing $200 worth of gum from the Shaw's in Stratford.
That was 12 days after he was arrested for stealing $75 worth of gum from the CVS store on Boston Avenue in Bridgeport.
March 5, 2009
Police: Heroin found in pregnant woman's waistband
The News Journal
A traffic stop south of Wilmington led to drug and other charges against a driver and his passenger, a pregnant woman who was allegedly found with 73 bags of heroin concealed in her waistband, police said.
Shawnett Backus, 31, of the 2500 block of Claymont Street in Wilmington, and Jeron Johnson, 27, of the 100 block of E. 30th St. in Wilmington, were each charged with possession with intent to deliver heroin, maintaining a vehicle for keeping a controlled substance, tampering with evidence and conspiracy.
Johnson was also charged with possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, possession of an electronic stun gun and traffic offenses.
Backus was committed to the Baylor Women's Correctional Institute after failing to post $15,000 secured bail, and Johnson was committed to the Young Correctional Institution in lieu of $54,003 secured bail.
Their car was pulled over for a window tint violation on Rogers Road near Del. 9 at 12:45 p.m. Wednesday, said New Castle County police spokesman Cpl. Trinidad Navarro.
Johnson was unable to provide an insurance card for the vehicle, and a search of the vehicle found six bags of heroin between the seats and a loaded .22 caliber handgun and a stun gun in the trunk, he said.
Both were taken to police headquarters, and a subsequent search of Backus, who is four months pregnant, found an additional 73 bags of heroin hidden in her waistband, he said.
Thursday 5th March, 2009 (IANS)
Moscow, March 4 (RIA Novosti) A woman in Russia's Penza region has been sentenced to 15 months behind bars after stabbing her husband in the eye when he refused to peel potatoes, the pnz.ru news website said Wednesday.
The woman, from the outskirts of the city of Penza, stabbed her husband in the left eye with a kitchen knife.
She had earlier served time for murder, and had met her future partner immediately after her release from jail, according to assistant to the regional prosecutor Irina Alekseyenko.
The victim waited three days before going to see a doctor. He initially claimed he had injured himself, but then admitted the truth. The man is now almost completely blind in the left eye.
'The victim begged the court to be lenient with his wife,' Alekseyenko said
The Greenville News
March 5, 2009
Tammy Fausel said Wednesday that she and her family were shocked at what happened during her uncle’s funeral in Gray Court.
Nicole Marie Loretta Leonard, 25, has been charged with disturbing a funeral and public disorderly conduct in Tuesday’s incident, according to tickets.
Fausel said she had never before seen the woman and had no idea why she would’ve been at funeral at Church of God on State 14.
"Everybody was just kind of flabbergasted," she said. "They didn’t know what was going on."
The woman took flowers from the top of the casket and threw them at the family before leaving in a burgundy Toyota, according to the report.
Fausel said she called the Sheriff’s Office.
A lieutenant intercepted a burgundy Toyota Corolla heading south on Interstate 385, according to the incident report.
When deputies asked the woman why she acted the way she did, the woman said "she felt that it was the right thing to do at the time," according to the report. The woman told deputies she knew no one at the church, according to the report.
Fausel said the deceased’s immediate family were in another room at the time of the incident and didn’t witness it.
Leonard, of 117 Davis Creek, was released from the Johnson Detention Center on Wednesday, according to jail officials and tickets.
Mark Coghill said his seemingly loving girlfriend, Tracy Davies, suddenly "turned into the likes of Mike Tyson", chewed off half his tongue and spat it out on the floor in front of him.
The 45-year-old was rushed to hospital by ambulance but doctors were unable to stitch it back on.
Jurors were told that when police arrived at Mr Coghill's home, Davies handed officers the severed flesh in a small plastic bag and said: "We had a domestic and I bit his tongue off, here it is."
Divorcee Mr Coghill said he had been dating Miss Davies for three months when he invited her to his house to celebrate his birthday on October 10 last year.
After drinks and a meal, Miss Davies became upset about the fact that her doctor had recently told her she was not pregnant, the court heard.
Mr Coghill, of Jesmond, Newcastle upon Tyne, said he tried to comfort Miss Davies and she said to him: "You haven't given me a proper, nice, smoochie, tongue in, sort of kiss for a few days."
He said: "I had wanted to anyway but she asked me to do that.
"She was nice and beautiful and passive then within a few seconds she turned into the likes of Mike Tyson."
Mr Coghill added that within a few seconds, Miss Davies was biting hard on his tongue.
He said: "I screamed, thinking it was some kind of joke for a few seconds, then I screamed more and more and more and tried to tap her on the head.
"I couldn't kick her off or push her off or anything like that. I was just hoping and praying she would stop but she didn't.
"She had my tongue in her mouth and she went 'mmmm' as though she was satisfied.
"She looked at me straight in the eyes, she made sure I saw half of my tongue was actually in her mouth and she spat it out on the carpet.
"My immediate reaction was has this really happened, have I had some sort of nightmare? So I checked and my tongue had gone, she had actually done it."
The former customer services worker met Miss Davies in June last year after placing an advert in a local newspaper's lonely hearts column.
The court heard that the couple had sex on six occasions before the alleged attack and that Miss Davies had told Mr Coghill that she loved him.
Davies, of Gateshead, denies causing grievous bodily harm with intent and claims she does not know how the injury was caused.
The trial at Newcastle Crown Court continues.
Flustered W.Va. man uses debit card to pay for drink during alleged store holdup
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- Would-be robbers take note: Don't use your debit card during a holdup. A West Virginia man who police say attempted to rob a convenience store instead ended up buying a soft drink with his debit card - ultimately leading to his arrest.
Shawn Thomas Lester, 33, told the store clerk Monday he had a gun and wanted all the money in the register, police said. But the suspect got flustered when a customer walked in and the clerk told him to pay for the soft drink.
Lester handed over his debit card, then signed the receipt "John Doe" and left without any cash.
Police traced the debit card and found Lester, of Charleston. He told police he was only joking when he said he had a gun and demanded money.
He was charged with armed robbery in Kanawha County, according to a criminal complaint.
It was not clear whether Lester had an attorney. His phone number was unlisted.
Information from: WCHS-TV, http://www.wchstv.com
Police are looking for a brazen thief who went to Lincoln's Berean Church Tuesday morning dressed as an armored service guard and walked away with nearly $145,000 in cash and checks.
Lincoln Police Officer Katie Flood said a man who appeared to be a guard with the armored car service went to the church’s financial office Tuesday morning and told a woman he was there to pick up the deposit.
When the woman said he was a little early, he came back with a reason that sounded plausible enough, Flood said.
"'Carl' was handed the weekend offering of around $145,000, initialed the receipt and waltzed out," said Police Chief Tom Casady.
All but about $4,000 of the money was in checks.
The plot became clear 15 minutes later — when the real guard showed up to the church at 6400 S. 70th St.
The woman at the church told police the man who left with the deposit was white, in his late 20s, 5-foot-7 or 5-foot-8, around 150 pounds with short light brown hair, glasses and a couple of days growth of facial hair. He was wearing a dark baseball cap, dark pants and a shirt with an emblem that looked just like a security uniform.
She never saw his car.
"It sounds like he knew exactly what he was doing," Flood said.
Casady said the heist likely will go down as one of the most interesting of the year in Lincoln.
And, he said, he wouldn't be surprised if the same scheme doesn't show up elsewhere.
"Large congregations, beware," Casady said.
Berean Church member Christina Peterson, an adjunct college instructor, hopes people don’t blame the church.
“I think it’s sad,” she said Wednesday morning by phone. “Berean is a wonderful church. They do a great job. I don’t feel like this is their fault at all. This man, he even had to know the routine. The people there (at the church) had no reason to believe he was anything other than what he presented himself to be.”
She wrote a $200 check on Sunday, so she’s pretty sure it was part of money stolen. Peterson said the church informed her by e-mail to call her bank.
“They’ve done everything within their power. It’s just sad that somebody decided to target a church that’s doing really well.”
While she’s being interviewed, another call comes in.
“Oh. That’s Wells Fargo.”
She calls back in a few minutes, says the bank told her they’re stopping payment on the check and are not going to charge her.
A man who stuffed his girlfriend's cat into a makeshift bong and smoked marijuana through it said Tuesday that he had done it on other occasions and that it calmed the cat down.
Acea Schomaker of Lincoln said he never intended to hurt the 6-month-old cat, Shadow.
Lancaster County sheriff's deputies responding to a domestic disturbance at the residence ticketed the 20-year-old Schomaker on suspicion of misdemeanor animal cruelty Sunday after catching him smoking marijuana from a boxlike contraption that had the cat stuffed inside its 12-inch by 6-inch base.
Schomaker's girlfriend, Marissa Vieux, also was ticketed for animal cruelty because she didn't try to stop Schomaker, Sgt. Andy Stebbing said.
Vieux, 22, said she took in the cat about two months ago from friends who abused it.
Schomaker said the cat would bite and scratch them but he didn't want to discipline it by swatting or squirting water at it. He said they didn't bring it to an animal shelter because they feared it would be put down.
So Schomaker said he decided to use the makeshift bong because he had heard about people calming their pets by blowing marijuana smoke in their faces.
"I know for sure this isn't the first time someone has done this," he said. "I'm just the first one to get caught."
He said he put the cat in the bong a total of three times and it seemed to calm the cat.
"Every time we took her out she would pretty much just lay down and proceed to clean herself and act like a stoned person," Schomaker said.
The bong had a foot-long piece of garden hose coming out of a Plexiglas box, with the top secured with duct tape. Schomaker said it was constructed in such a way that the cat did not get immersed in smoke to the extent some might believe.
Schomaker said law enforcement and animal specialists lectured him about why what he did was cruel, and that he learned from his mistake.
This March 1, 2009, booking photo provided by the Lancaster County Sheriff's Dept., shows Acea Schomaker of Lincoln, Neb. He was booked Sunday on suspicion of animal cruelty, after deputies caught him smoking marijuana from a bong contraption that had a cat stuffed inside its 12-inch by 6-inch base. Schomaker told Lancaster County sheriff's deputies the 6-month-old female cat named Shadow had been hyper and that he was trying to calm her. Shadow was taken to the Capital Humane Society, where she appeared to be in good condition. (AP Photo/Lancaster County Sheriff Dept.)
A homemade bong, consisting of a piece of garden hose attached to a duct-taped plexiglas box, is seen in this March 1, 2009, handout photo provided by the Lancaster County Sheriff's Dept. Deputies responding Sunday, March 1, 2009, to a domestic disturbance call at a Lincoln, Neb., area residence, cited a 20-year-old man on suspicion of animal cruelty after catching him smoking marijuana from the contraption that had Shadow, a six-month-old female cat, stuffed inside its 12-inch by 6-inch base. The man told deputies the cat had been acting hyper and that he was trying to calm her down. (AP Photo/Lancaster County Sheriff Dept.)
Shadow, a 6-month-old female cat, is seen in this March 1, 2009, photo provided by the Lancaster County Sheriff's Dept. Shadow was rescued by deputies, who discovered the cat trapped in a "bong" after responding to a domestic disturbance call at a residency that a 20-year old suspect shares with his grandfather in the Lincoln, Neb., area. (AP Photo/Lancaster County Sheriff Dept.)
A strange looking cat has been causing a stir at a veterinary hospital in America.
The cat's name is Ugly Bat Boy and he is bald apart from a furry chest.
Dr. Stephen Bassett was given the cat by a client and says Ugly is happy with the attention he attracts at his surgery in Exeter, New Hampshire, in the USA.
Hospital staff say the curious cat can scare and mesmerise people.
A five year-old boy in the French town of Uckange has stabbed his ten year-old sister with a kitchen knife following an argument over a Nintendo DS, Le Post reports.
The incident occurred on Saturday night, and was prompted by the sister's refusal to allow her brother to play with her Nintendo DS. Upset over this, the boy took a kitchen knife and stabbed her in the chest. The children's mother was awakened by the girl's screams and she was rushed to hospital, where she remains (although her condition is not listed as critical).
There are further reports from a follow-up story by Le Post of the boy citing "inspiration" from a Power Rangers game that involved throwing knives, and of the family suffering from a history of domestic violence at the hands of their estranged father.
February 27, 2009
It was a shock when Edward Peterson returned to his downturn apartment last week to discover that it was stripped of everything, including shelves and drawers.
An hour or so later, police discovered that his landlord had cleaned out the apartment by mistake.
According to a Madison police report, Peterson, 36, returned to his apartment at 121 S. Han St. on Feb. 20 at 3 p.m. and found it emptied of all his furniture and belongings. He had left just five hours earlier, and everything was fine.
Peterson flagged down Madison Police Officer Nicholas Ellis in his squad car at 3:40 and he followed Peterson to his apartment to investigate what he assumed was a burglary.
The supposed burglar turned out to be Peterson's landlord at Hart Rentals, who had instructed a maintenance worker to clean out Peterson's apartment by mistake. Shirley Eckes, business manager of Hart Rentals, told Officer Ellis that the company wanted to clean out an apartment with the same number as Peterson's in a different building the company owns.
Maintenance man Dustin Sobacki told Ellis that he was already working in 121 S. Han on Feb. 20 when Eckes told him to clean out the apartment, the report said. Sobacki put all of Peterson's belongings into black garbage bags which he put into a trash bin on the east side of 121 S. Han.
Peterson recovered most of his property from the trash bin, the report said, and Hart Rentals returned Peterson's TV and TV remote, which Sobacki had kept in Hart Rental's maintenance office. Some items were still missing, however, including about 150 CDs with an estimated value of $1,500, a CD boom box, about $300 cash, approximately 100 astrology-related books; 10 DVDs, a cell phone and credit cards. Sobacki told Ellis that several people were outside the parking lot when he was moving items into the garbage and they may have taken some of Peterson's things.
According to the police report, Eckes told Officer Ellis that "whatever is missing from Peterson's apartment we will make him whole again." The report made no mention of criminal charges.
Peterson could not be reached for comment, and Eckes declined to comment on the incident when reached by The Capital Times.
Minnesota police find about 100 grams of marijuana and 4.25 grams of cocaine in woman's bra.
WINONA, Minn. (AP) -- A 20-year-old woman faces drug charges after police found cocaine and marijuana hidden in her bra. Buffalo County police notified authorities in Winona Thursday that a car headed their way may have been involved in a drug deal.
A Winona officer pulled over the vehicle and searched the woman. Deputy Chief Tom Williams said that turned up about 100 grams of marijuana and 4.25 grams of cocaine in her bra. He says she was also carrying about $600 in cash.
New York, March 2: In a strange delivery case, a woman with two wombs has given birth to two healthy daughters - one from each uterus.
The northern Michigan woman, named Sarah Reinfelder, delivered the twins seven weeks premature via Caesarean section on Thursday at Marquette General Hospital in the Upper Peninsula.
The 21-year-old mother and her twin girls, Kaylin Joy and Valerie Marie, are doing fine, Dr. Connie Hedmark and Dr. Breanna Pond, who delivered the babies, said.
Doctors first delivered Kaylin, who weighed 3 pounds, 15 ounces, and then Valerie, who weighed 4 pounds, 15 ounces.
Although the babies are healthy and doing well, they still need to stay in hospital for several weeks until their lungs start working properly, Neonatologist Julie Frei said.
Sarah Reinfelder, born with a condition called uterus didelphys, which means she actually has two wombs, learned a few years ago after a miscarriage that she had two wombs.
Doctors have been calling Sarah Reinfelder’s delivery “miraculous”, and the baby girls “rare twins”, as the chance of conceiving twins, with one baby in each womb, is considered to be rare, happening to an estimated one in 25 million women.
Dayton Daily News
Friday, February 27, 2009
The incident happened about 7:45 a.m. Thursday, Feb., 26, near the intersection of Far Hills Avenue and Dorothy Lane, Burke said.
A male motorist called the police department's non-emergency number to report that he had seen the woman breastfeeding and talking on a cell phone while driving, Burke said. The man reported that he also witnessed the woman driving a Honda minivan into the parking lot of a local school and saw some children get out of the van. The man then got the van's license plate number and called police.
"I'm following right behind her right now on Far Hills Avenue," the caller said as he spoke to a Kettering dispatcher in a recording of his non-emergency call that was released by police on Friday, Feb. 27.
"I tried to say something to her. She literally has the little girl on the steering wheel and I said, 'I can't believe you have that kid in your lap and she said, 'You want to pop your titty out and breastfeed this kid?' That's what she said to me. I'm like, 'You can feed your kid when you stop.' It's like wet out here. It's full of traffic. It's ridiculous. She's got like three other kids in the car."
The police came to the area and tried to locate the van, but could not find it. So they used the license plate number to track down her contact information, Burke said.
When a police officer spoke to her, she admitted she breastfed her child and also told police that she does not deprive her child when the child is hungry, Burke said.
The officer took the information and presented it to the city prosecutor's office. That's when Genine Compton, 39, of Elm Grove in Harrison Twp., was charged with a first-degree misdemeanor of child endangering and minor misdemeanor for unlawfully restraining her child, which Burke believes was under 2.
When police were unsuccessful with serving Compton her ticket and a court summons at her home on Friday, Feb. 27, an officer went to the school where the witness saw her drop off the children on Thursday morning. The officer used the descriptions the witness gave to locate Compton at the school and serve the tickets and summons, Burke said. Compton was not arrested.
When asked why the tickets and summons couldn't be mailed, Burke said, "It's legal documents. We have to personally serve them to the defendant."
If convicted of the child endangering charge, Compton could face up to 180 days in jail and fined between $1,500 and $1,800, Burke said. If convicted of the unlawful restraint charge, Compton could be fined up to $150.
"Our issue is not the fact that this woman was breastfeeding in public," Burke said. He added that Compton would have been charged even if the child was just sitting on her lap. "Our issue is that she created the condition that placed her child's health and safety at risk."
NEW YORK - Sometimes people do stupid things. Posting an ad seeking a hit man to attack your ex-girlfriend is one of them, especially if you put your contact information at the bottom.
Newsflash: Cops surf the Internet, too.
Karim Emara apparently didn’t think twice, however. Emara posted an online personal offering $5,000 to the person who would assault his ex, police said. Not only did he want her hurt, the New Jersey man was specific about what he wanted done.
Cops arrested Emara Wednesday night when he showed up at a prearranged location to give the hired brute his ex-girlfriend’s name, address and photograph. The AT&T computer programmer was charged with conspiracy to commit aggravated assault.
Emara was being held on $250,000 bail at the Bergen County Jail. His arraignment was scheduled for Thursday morning.
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