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Update  June, 2019


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Odds & Ends  The Associated Press
 

 

(Kreispolizeibehoerde Viersen via AP)

German police: "Guardian angel" pigeon protected speeder

Berlin (AP) — Police in western Germany say divine intervention saved a speeding driver from getting a ticket, after a pigeon photobombed a traffic enforcement camera at just the right moment. Perhaps inspired by this week's Ascension Day national Christian holiday, Viersen police said "the Holy Ghost must have had a plan" to help the driver. Just as the radar clocked the driver at 54 km/h (33.5 mph) in a 30km/h zone and the camera flashed, the pigeon flew in front of the car, obscuring the face of the driver with its spread wings and thereby concealing the necessary evidence of who was at the wheel. Police say "thanks to the feathered guardian angel," the driver was spared a 105 euro ($117) fine but should take it as "a sign from above" to slow down.

  

Police: Mystery man pulling emergency brakes on subways

New York (AP) — New York City police have been searching for a person who has been intentionally pulling the emergency brakes on subway cars for no legitimate purpose. Police on Thursday released images and video of a man they say rode on the outside of a car for several stops before entering the car and pulling its emergency brake and fleeing. It happened on a northbound 2 train at the 14th Street and Seventh avenue station during the Tuesday evening rush hour. Police say there have been about 40 similar incidents. They began in February, continued in March and increased in frequency in April and May. Police believe the brake pulling prankster is using a key to gain access to an unoccupied motorman car, where he is able to engage the emergency brake.

 

Air Force: Obscene contrails above Phoenix unintentional

Phoenix (AP) — U.S. Air Force officials say their pilots did not intentionally draw male anatomy with aircraft contrails in the skies above the Phoenix area. Photos taken of a series of sky ovals near Luke Air Force Base have circulated on social media and some say the shapes resemble male genitals. Base spokesperson Becky Heyse told the Arizona Republic that leadership of the 56th Fighter Wing has reviewed the photos and flight audio to determine the shapes were made unintentionally. The F-35 fighter jets were conducting standard training maneuvers Tuesday. Heyse says the contrails were made as the jets were about to engage in a simulated dogfight.

 

School closes after man enters overnight, takes clothes off

Scranton, Pa. (AP) — A Pennsylvania elementary school closed for the day after educators realized that a man had entered the building overnight, got naked and spilled Murphy Oil Soap on the gym floor. Neil Armstrong Elementary School staff originally thought the spilled soap was a prank, but the principal reviewed security footage and saw that a man had been on the premises. Scranton Police Chief Carl Graziano says that once inside the school, the man took off his clothes and walked through parts of the school. School officials decided at about 7 a.m. to close the school for safety. Graziano says there were no signs of forced entry. More than 600 students are enrolled at the school.

 

Berlin park's drug dealer solution panned by authorities

Berlin (AP) — A creative attempt by a downtown Berlin park manager to keep drug dealers away from families and joggers has been met with an emphatic "nein" from German officials. Cengiz Demirci demarcated certain areas in the popular Goerlitzer Park with pink spray-painted lines for the dealers to stand behind, with the intention of keeping them away from playgrounds and a small farm for children, among other places. But federal drug czar Marlene Mortler slammed the idea Thursday as appearing to give dealers "license to trade." And the capital's top security official, Interior Minister Andreas Geisel, said Demirci's idea would not be adopted by the city. He says: "Police are fighting drug trafficking, including in Goerlitzer Park." Local media reported that drug dealers weren't planning on standing behind the non-permanent lines anyway.

 (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

 


June 15, 2019 - June 21, 2019

 (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

Lift those knees: Babies crawl to the Lithuanian finish line

Vilnius, Lithuania (AP) — In Lithuania, the rat race of life apparently starts early. Twenty-five babies have taken to the red carpet in Lithuania in a crawling race as their parents, grandparents and onlookers cheered the spectacle. Saturday's event in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, was the 20th annual event staged by a local radio station to mark International Children's Day, celebrated in this Baltic nation on June 1. Teams waved toys and even banged baby food cans to spur the 7-to-11-month-old baby girls and boys to move faster on the carpet. An 11-month-old baby boy named Ignas managed to crawl over a few meters (yards) and reach the finish line first.

 

Court confirms man's custody of dog, denies ex-girlfriend

Augusta, Maine (AP) — Maine's Supreme Court has upheld a ruling granting a man sole custody of his dog, denying his ex-girlfriend's bid to take the pet. The Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday affirmed that pets are property in confirming a district judge's decision that the Lab-boxer mix named Honey belongs to the man whose name appeared on adoption papers. His former girlfriend sued for custody. The ruling was swift, and there was no written opinion. During arguments two weeks ago, Chief Justice Leigh Saufley questioned whether it's a good use of time for judges to analyze pet custody in cases involving unmarried couples. Pets are considered property in all 50 states. Only three states — Alaska, Illinois and California — have specific laws that address pet custody when a marriage dissolves.

 

Gator busts through kitchen window, breaks bottles of wine

Clearwater, Fla. (AP) — Authorities say an 11-foot (3.4-meter) alligator busted through a kitchen window and broke several bottles of red wine in a Florida home before it was captured. Police tweeted that the gator was removed from Mary Wischhusen's Clearwater condominium early Friday. No one was injured. Wischhusen uses a walker. She told news outlets that the moment she saw the lumbering reptile, she moved into her bedroom, closed the door and called police. She says she played computer games while waiting for help to arrive. Wischhusen says it took two trappers and 10 police officers two hours to get the alligator out of the home, where she has lived for almost four decades.

 

Merkel fan accidentally grounds chancellor's plane

Berlin (AP) — Chancellor Angela Merkel's government plane was grounded by an excited fan who jumped out of her van to take a photo of it at Dortmund airport but forgot to put the parking brake on, and the vehicle rolled slowly into the nose of the jet. Germany's Spiegel Online posted a picture Tuesday of the low-speed collision with the Global 5000 jet and reported that the van driver was an employee of the airport. The German air force confirmed in a tweet that Merkel returned to Berlin by helicopter Monday after her plane was damaged by a vehicle, but didn't provide further details. The accident is a headache the air force doesn't need, after a string of highly publicized breakdowns of the aging government fleet causing delays for Merkel and others.

 

Someone breaks into home, takes nothing, gives it good scrub

Marlborough, Mass. (AP) — Whoever broke into a Massachusetts man's home last week didn't take a thing. They did, however, leave the house spotless. Nate Roman tells The Boston Globe that when he returned to his Marlborough home from work May 15, he could tell a stranger had been there. Nothing was missing, but the 44-year-old Roman noticed the beds were made, the rugs vacuumed and the toilets scrubbed. They even crafted origami roses on the toilet paper rolls. He called the experience "weird and creepy" and contacted police. Sgt. Daniel Campbell says that the department hasn't heard of similar episodes and that there are no suspects. Roman says he may have left his back door unlocked. He thinks perhaps a housekeeping service went to his home by mistake.
 


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Odds and Ends - June 27, 2019

June 15, 2019 - June 21, 2019