Friday, October 21, 2016


Lucy the labrador wants to be let into the house

Where there's a will there's a way.

YouTube link.

Police thank wanted woman who contacted them after accidentally handcuffing herself

Police in Sacramento, California, had help from a wanted woman on Wednesday morning who handcuffed herself and called police for help.

Cana Greer, 29, called the Sacramento Police Department for help after she and a friend, who used to be a security guard, were messing around with an old pair of handcuffs.

Greer accidentally handcuffed herself and discovered that there was no key to unlock the cuffs. Responding officers conducted a records check before arriving to help Greer, and found that she had a felony burglary warrant out of El Dorado County.

"When officers arrived, they thanked the woman for arresting herself and transported her to a nearby fire station to have the old cuffs removed," the police department said. Greer was taken to the Sacramento County Jail and booked on her outstanding warrant.

Deer crashed through window of computer repair shop before leaving the way it came in

A deer crashed through an eight-inch window at a computer repair shop in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, over the weekend. The deer leapt through the window at Expert PC just after noon on Sunday, smashing it to bits.

Due to the small size of the deer, the motion detectors in the store did not trigger, however police contacted one of the owners when they saw the broken window. Steve Baker, one of the owners of the PC repair shop, says that the deer was able to escape through the same window.

But not before tearing into the equipment they had in the back of the store, and ruining some of the carpet. Baker says that deer have never been a problem before. "That [deer] is the first one I have ever seen in town," said Baker. "They usually stay out but we are right across the street from a wooded area with fields."

YouTube link.

Thankfully the equipment that was damaged in the incident was not owned by any of their customers. Instead it was repaired merchandise that the store was hoping to resell. The damages are estimated to cost the shop around $5,000, but Baker is hopeful that insurance will cover it. Baker is just happy that the little bit of damage is all that occurred. "At least the deer didn't rob us."

With additional news video.

Chubby raccoon indelicately rescued after getting stuck in bin lid

Three men attempting to free a well fed raccoon stuck in the open centre of a bin lid used a wheelie bin lid to free the creature.

The video, recorded in Toronto, Canada, earlier this month shows the raccoon in the back of a pick-up truck while stuck in the middle opening of the lid.

The men placed the lid over the top of a wheelie bin and use that receptacle's lid to push down on the raccoon and free it from the narrow opening. The men then opened the wheelie bin near some bushes to release the raccoon.

YouTube link.

The uploader said the rescue was a much longer operation than it would appear from the video. "This video begins after 2 hours of getting him into the truck after getting stuck in the bushes as well," they said.

Hurt, surprise, and disappointment expressed by some parishioners about baby Jesus' new head

A new head on a baby Jesus statue is causing some to look twice in a churchyard in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. The head, which went missing from the pearly white statue a year ago, has been replaced by a handmade terracotta sculpture created by a local artist. "It really is shocking to the eyes because of the big contrast in colour," the church's priest Gérard Lajeunesse.

The statue head, which Lajeunesse believes was stolen, went missing during the night last October. It wasn't the first time that part of the sculpture disappeared. "The statue had been vandalised before, at least once, maybe twice," he said. "It's always Jesus' head that goes missing. Probably because it's smaller and easier to break off." In the past, parishioners always found the head nearby and were able to reattach it. "This time we looked high and low. No head. No Jesus."

Lajeunesse went to several businesses to see if a replacement head could be built. "It has to be custom made. And nobody even wanted to consider it," he said. Replacing the entire statue would cost between $6,000 and $10,000. "You wonder, if we do replace it with a new one, will we be up against the same situation?" Lajeunesse said, noting the head's reputation for going missing. That's when local artist Heather Wise knocked on Lajeunesse's door, asking about the statue. "She was quite upset about it and she offered to do something if she could," Lajeunesse said.

Lajeunesse said Ms Wise spent several hours sculpting the new Jesus head onto the body out of clay."The difficulty is the artist had to lift the chin so that the head would stay on because it would keep falling off," he said. The clay head has begun to erode from the rain after less than a week. "I don't expect it to last long. She plans on sculpting in stone sometime next year," he said. Lajeunesse said many parishioners have expressed hurt, surprise, and disappointment with the new head. "It's a first try. It's a first go. And hopefully what is done at the end will please everyone," he said.

Man who shared 10-hour trip with deadly snake 'tried to be environmentally friendly'

A man who was forced to share a ride for 10 hours to to Alice Springs in Australia with a deadly mulga snake has said the incident occurred after he and a co-worker tried to be "environmentally friendly" and usher the large reptile off the road, before it shot towards their car. Road engineer Glen Auricht spoke about his experience, after it was revealed that he and another engineer travelled 500 kilometres (310 miles) with a mulga snake in the engine of their car. The mulga snake, also known as a king brown, has been named Australia's sixth-most dangerous snake species.

Mr Auricht said he was travelling with another engineer on the Plenty Highway, inspecting roads at about 8:30am on Tuesday when they saw the large mulga sunning itself on the road. "So being environmentally friendly we tried to push it off the road with a long stick, so it wouldn't get run over by other vehicles," he said. He said he was aware it was highly venomous but attempted to get it out of harm's way despite that. "We were trying to save the silly bugger," he said. But the snake then shot straight towards his car, despite it being parked quite a distance away, and managed to find refuge, Mr Auricht said.

"It looked like shelter to it I suppose," he said. Mr Auricht said at that point he and his colleague were "rather horrified". "We thought to ourselves, 'holy mackerel we've got a snake in our car'," he said. Mr Auricht said the pair then drove to Hart's Range and stopped for "a cuppa" and looked for their slippery sidekick. "We looked through the grille but couldn't see it … then we popped the bonnet and it was lying across the battery … across the air cleaner at the side of the engine," he said. "It looked quite happy, not too hot." Mr Auricht said he got a long piece of fencing wire and tried to lift it out of the engine bay. "It was upset that I was disturbing it, and it slithered out of the wire hook and back into the engine somewhere and we couldn't find it anymore," he said.

YouTube link. Alternative Facebook video.

The pair then drove more than 200 kilometres to Jervois because "they had to finish their jobs" and thought the snake was too big to wiggle its way into the cabin of the car. "He was a pretty big fella, thick as your arm, and we didn't think it could get through the vent," he said. "We checked out the other side of Jervois and saw it behind the headlight, it was happily sitting on the mudguard there before the air cleaner." The pair, then having finished their work for the day, made the 350-kilometre trek back to Alice Springs and pulled straight into the driveway of Alice Springs snake catcher Rex Neindorf's house. "I didn't want to take it home to the wife, she wouldn't have appreciated it," he said. "I might get into trouble with work for picking up hitch-hikers because we're not allowed to."

Woman who found giant mushroom shared it between 15 hungry colleagues

A giant puffball mushroom with a 1.5-metre (59in) circumference and weight of more than 10kg has been found, and quickly eaten, by a Scottish countryside ranger and her colleagues. Fiona Wishart, a ranger with Falkirk Council, said the 10.6kg (23lbs) fungus was so heavy she had to get help from a colleague to carry it back to their office.

After taking photos, they shared it out between 15 people, who took it home to cook. She said: "It was really exciting as it's probably the biggest puffball I've ever found in my life. It tasted lovely. When you cut it up it has a texture like marshmallow. The best way to cook it is to dip it in egg and fry it up , but some people dipped it in Parmesan.

"It was lucky we found it when we did as it was in perfect condition." The mushroom was found at a site near Polmont. Giant puffballs occur in late summer and autumn and can be found in nutrient-rich grassy areas. They often grow to about the size of a football, though there have been reports of larger specimens weighing about 20kg (42lbs).

The largest British specimen ever measured was 1.62 metres (64ins) in circumference, according to the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew website, which says 4kg (8lbs) is about the average weight. It says the mushroom is an "excellent edible fungus" which has been "long sought after for its culinary value" and that it was well-known to the Greeks and Romans.

The 'queen has died' notice explains vanished ant colony

In the words of one observer, it is “possibly the saddest, most heartbreaking ‘This exhibit is currently out of order’ sign ever” – the ant colony at London’s Natural History Museum has a sign on it that reads: “The queen ant has died.” The sign goes on to explain that: “When this happens the colony fails to survive.

The worker ants are in the process of dismantling the fungus garden nests, then they will also die.” All that is now left of the Trinidad Leaf-Cutter ant colony is a pile of discarded leaves, some shredded paper, and the remains of several dead ants that have yet to be cleaned out. The whole scene is being played out in front of the museum’s thousands of daily visitors in the Creepy Crawlies gallery, where an ant colony has been one of the main attractions for some time.

The museum even used to have a webcam trained on the ants so you could keep an eye on them remotely. Leaf-cutter ants feed by deliberately growing fungus in their nest on the leaves that they drag there, and ants are one of only four groups of animal on Earth believed to have discovered agriculture. Myrmecologists think that ants first began farming fungus about 50m years ago, and in order to be able to stock their colony, they can carry 5,000 times their own body weight.

But there is no fungus being farmed in the Natural History Museum any more, as a succession of visitors pressed their faces to the empty display, looking for any signs of life behind the glass. Insiders at the museum say the queen died some time ago, and that this happens every few years. The good news is that he museum’s sign ends optimistically, by saying the exhibit is waiting for a new queen to arrive.

Man accused of wilfully mistreating a child by deliberately farting in his face

A man has gone on trial accused of mistreating a child by breaking wind in his face. Gary McKenzie, of Beaumont Hill, Darlington, denies the prank but says he once broke wind in front of the boy's face accidentally, which he said was funny. Prosecutor Paul Abrahams told Teesside Crown Court that if the incident had taken place in a rugby club after the victim had drunk ten pints it may have been dismissed as horseplay, but in McKenzie's case it amounted to cruelty.

The charge McKenzie faces states: "At Darlington in the County of Durham, being a person who had attained the age of 16 years, you wilfully ill-treated the child, namely by breaking wind in his face, in a manner likely to cause him unnecessary suffering or injury to health Contrary to section 1(1) of the Children and Young Persons Act 1933." Mr Abrahams told the jury on Wednesday the acts of 22-year-old McKenzie were "cruel and bullying." Describing the alleged prank, he said the boy, who is under 16 and cannot be identified, had been lying down when McKenzie approached him.

He said: "The boy said that the defendant pumped in his face. It might be at a rugby club done to someone who had drunk ten pints and fallen asleep that one might think of this as horseplay. But this was a child at the time and was highly inappropriate." Mr Abrahams said the boy had been upset by the incident and asked McKenzie why he had done it, and was told: "I just wanted to be nasty." In police interview McKenzie denied the incident, saying he had once broken wind while climbing a flight of steps when the boy had been behind him with his face near his backside. Mr Abrahams said: "He said this had been funny but denied the incident described."

The alleged victim relived his ordeal in a recorded police interview played to the court. The boy said: "He pumped. He was right next to me and bending down, he was wearing shorts, his shorts were right next to my face. I said 'why did you do that?' and he said he did it because he wanted to be nasty." He said he had seen McKenzie do a similar thing to another child, and told a detective: "He pulled his pants down and pumped right on their face. I knew he had pumped because I heard the noise." McKenzie denied to police he had carried out the act, describing the action as "disgusting and disgraceful" and something he would not do. He faces a trial which is expected to last for the rest of the week.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Any chance I could appear in your photograph?

Young lady enjoys a stroll with Ringo the rhino

At the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in the Laikipia District of Kenya.

YouTube link.

Woman allegedly stole shovel, chainsaw, pecan trees, fertiliser and a prom dress from neighbour

A woman from Freeport, Florida, is facing charges for allegedly stealing some unusual items from her neighbor's property. According to the Walton County Sheriff's Office, Skyler Anderson, 26, made off with her neighbour's shovel, electric leaf blower, chainsaw, two bags of Miracle Grow, three pecan trees, along with a prom dress and a vanity mirror.

Randall Brown called deputies at 7:35am on Sunday to report that he'd seen his neighbour Skyler "Sky" Anderson, "in his yard with his rake and a plastic bag." Brown told authorities that when he approached Anderson she went back to her house. He said he could see some of his belongings in Skyler's yard.

Responding deputies set up a perimeter around Anderson's home and waited while a search warrant was obtained. The deputies could clearly see items Brown had identified as stolen in the yard outside the home. "After several hours," the arrest report said, "Skyler came out of the home and was arrested."

She was charged with burglary of an unoccupied dwelling, burglary of an occupied dwelling and grand theft. The items she had stolen were inside Brown's workshop and carport. Anderson objected to being arrested by kicking at the windows and the partition of the patrol car in which she was placed. She also head butted and spit on the partition on the way to the Walton County Jail.

Police say there's nothing illegal about fishing from a canoe on top of a bus

Police in Boulder, Colorada, received an unusual call on Thursday, when witnesses reported that some college-aged men were fishing from a canoe.

On top of a bus. Boulder police first got the call at about 2:15pm, according to Boulder police spokeswoman Laurie Ogden.

According to police radio traffic, the call came in as men in the canoe on top of the bus singing loudly and drinking beer with fishing poles while throwing money. But upon arriving on scene, officers said the men were not drinking and that the bus was parked.

They were using dollar bills as bait on their fishing poles but were not throwing money. Because they were not drinking, officers decided the men were doing nothing illegal and left them alone. "They were just having some fun," Ogden said.

Thief rappelled into sports store before making off with 500 hockey sticks worth $150,000

A thief made a dramatic entrance in a hockey equipment store in Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Quebec, Canada, over the weekend, dropping from the roof in what could be a scene from Mission: Impossible. The thief entered Monkey Sports via a rope, before making off with about $150,000 worth of high-end hockey sticks. The incident took place on Saturday at about 10pm and was caught on surveillance camera.

“It's amazing,” said store manager Greg Goyer. “I’m also sickened.” Goyer is turning to the public for help, asking people to be on the lookout for his stolen goods or a deal on hockey sticks that’s too good to be true. The thief didn’t discriminate, grabbing some 500 sticks in a variety of brands, each about $300. He had plastic ties to bundle the sticks together, while an accomplice was waiting by the back door to collect the goods. The two made off in a white van.

Goyer said this isn’t the first break-in at Monkey Sports and that he beefed up security after a previous theft in August. In that incident, the thieves broke through the front windows. This break-in seemed well planned, said Goyer. “He found the right location on top of the roof,” he said, adding that’s it’s a 60,000 square-foot facility. “When you think about it, on top of the roof to find the key location to drop in the store where you’re not hitting anything – any beams, or any pipes or any electrical lines. To land directly in the stick section took some planning.”

YouTube link.

Due to the precise entry point, Montreal police said they will be interviewing staff about the robbery. “It’s going to be hard work for the investigator to understand why it happened and how they knew the place to do the hole,” said Montreal police spokesperson Benoit Boisselle. Police are also trying to determine if a second attempted robbery, on Sunday, is connected. Goyer said he’s heard of pilfered products ending up in the US or overseas, but hopes there will be a local tip before that happens. “If you're hearing about sticks being sold on the side at a great price, maybe ask the question or raise the flag,” he said.

Black bear family of four spotted having dinner in a crab apple tree

People in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, are accustomed to seeing black bears wander throughout their city.

But a mother bear and her three cubs enjoying a quick meal in a crab apple tree is something that isn't seen every day.

Megan Sigurdson was driving through her neighbourhood recently when she spotted the four black bears in the crab apple tree. Bears are a common sight in her neighbourhood, but she said she's never seen anything like this.

YouTube link.

"I was wondering how they were all supported on the tree without breaking it," she said. "They were on really small branches. I don't understand how it worked," she added. "It was like a circus."

Malaysian religious government body says that hot dogs 'must be renamed'

Food outlets selling hot dogs in Malaysia have been asked to rename their products or risk being refused halal certification. The Malaysian Islamic Development Department, a religious government body, said it adopted the ruling after complaints from Muslim tourists. Director Sirajuddin Suhaimee said the name might cause "confusion".

"In Islam, dogs are considered unclean and the name cannot be related to halal certification," he said. Malaysian halal food guidelines say "halal food and halal artificial flavour shall not be named or synonymously named after non-halal products such as ham, bak kut teh, bacon, beer, rum and others that might create confusion," local media said. Muslim-majority Malaysia practises a moderate form of Islam but conservative attitudes are on the rise.

On Monday, popular pretzel store franchise Auntie Anne's was refused halal certification unless it renamed its "Pretzel Dog". Mr Suhaimee said it was "more appropriate" to call it a "Pretzel Sausage". A representative of the US chain described it as a "minor issue" and said the firm was fine with changing the name on the menu. Malaysian Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Aziz slammed the ruling, calling it "stupid and backward".

"Hot dog is hot dog lah. Even in Malay it's called hot dog - it's been around for so many years. I'm a Muslim and I'm not offended," he said, adding that there was no reason for the religious body to take offence at the word. "It comes from the English language. Please do not make us seem stupid and backward." Malaysia often prides itself on being a moderate Muslim nation, which allows other religions freedom of worship. However, in recent years, there has been greater emphasis on Islamic codes of conduct.

Man pursed by angry elk forced to take refuge up lamppost

A Swedish man managed to save himself from an angry elk on Tuesday by thinking fast and climbing up a lamppost. The incident occurred in Vendelsö, south of Stockholm.

The man was in the vicinity of a supermarket when the elk started running towards him. Despite there being several other people in the vicinity, the elk only had angry eyes for the one specific man it had decided to chase. So the victim took to the lamppost.

“It's obviously a very agile and nimble man we’re talking about,” police spokesperson Albin Näverbeg said. According to witness reports, a motorist eventually came to the rescue by honking his horn, causing the elk to flee in the direction of a nearby forest. Neither the nimble man nor the elk were harmed.

“I came driving past and saw a man on the lamp post while an angry elk stood below and looked at him. It was quite comical. Cars had stopped along the side of the road. I honked my horn to see if I could scare it, but it didn’t react at all,” eye-witness Jonny Karlström said. A game warden has now been tasked with locating the irritated elk to make sure that it has not gone to a new area to wreak further havoc.

Schoolchildren devasted about the theft of their cardboard parking policeman

Schoolchildren have been left devastated after their cardboard policeman, used to warn parents about dangerous parking, was stolen. Earlier this year youngsters at Palterton Primary School in Derbyshire raised money for the cardboard cut-out policeman, or Graham as he is known.

However Graham has been stolen by thieves who illegally entered school property before cutting his ties and making off with him. Headteacher, Ros Horsley, said: “The children chose to fundraise for ‘Graham’ the policeman to encourage families and visitors to park safely at our school. It is really sad that someone has taken him and the children feel that their efforts have gone to waste.”

School business manager, Julie Whittaker, said like many schools they have had a long-standing problem with parking. She said that the school decided to hold a non-uniform day in March and bought Graham with the proceeds in May. Many of the pupils whose idea it was to raise the money were upset about his disappearance. Dylan aged ten, said: “I think it is really bad that the people have done this. However long it takes us we will find out who stole him. Please own up!”

Nyah, nine, added: “I am upset and angry and what the person did was wrong, they shouldn’t have done it.” Phoebe, ten, said: “We raised a lot of money to get our policeman to help stop people parking on the yellow lines outside school. I am disappointed that someone came onto our school property and stole him.” And Ben, nine, added “It is bad that someone has stolen our policeman. We raised a lot of money to get him.” Derbyshire Police have said that anyone who knows what happened or where Graham might be now should contact them.

Couple unhappy about police officer leaving his footprints all over their newly-laid driveway

A police officer allegedly ruined a couple's newly-laid driveway when questioning them over a stolen Porsche car. Simon and Susan Walker claim he left his size nine prints all over their driveway at their home near Stockport, Greater Manchester. To make matters worse, their new £55,000 Porsche Cayenne 4.8 Turbo was subsequently seized in a fraud probe. Greater Manchester Police (GMP) are investigating but confirmed that Mr and Mrs Walker are not car theft suspects.

The couple, from Hazel Grove, have made a formal complaint and want GMP to pay for repairs, which they say will cost £16,000. The couple say they have been left £71,000 out of the pocket because of their ordeal. Mr Walker, 49, said GMP had refused to pay for a new driveway as there was no sign indicating it was still wet at the time of the officer's visit. He said: "It's absolutely ridiculous. There was red tape across the entrance to the drive.

"But the officer just pushed open the gates. When we told him the driveway was new he said: 'I thought it was a bit sticky'. This whole thing has been a nightmare - we are £70,000 out of pocket and I was treated like a criminal. We cannot just repair the driveway as it is natural stone - it needs replacing." His 52-year-old wife said: "It has been horrendous." Mr Walker, who runs a dog hydrotherapy business, was twice questioned by police investigating the theft of a car.

The couple had decided to treat themselves to the Porsche as a 25th wedding anniversary present in August 2015. They bought it from a garage in Greater Manchester which is now under investigation after the car's owner complained he had not been paid by the garage owners. Mr Walker added: "The police passed on our details and 10 enforcement officers came to take it away. We will not get it back." A GMP spokesman said: "We have received a complaint and are investigating."