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News » News Quirks

No Believing Allowed



Curses, Foiled Again
A burglar used the homeowner's devices to log on to porn, YouTube and his Facebook account, but authorities in Monroe County, Fla., quickly identified him because he forgot to log off Facebook. Sheriff's official Becky Herrin said the 16-year-old suspect also ate a Pop Tart and drank a soda. (Miami Herald)

•Burglary suspect Christopher Wallace, 24, eluded sheriff's deputies in Somerset County, Maine, for several weeks but then unwittingly alerted them to his whereabouts by revealing on Snapchat that he had just returned home. A second post followed that deputies were at his home and coming inside, but he was hiding in a cabinet. Social media-monitoring deputies then headed for the cabinet and found "a pair of feet," the sheriff's department's Facebook page reported. "The feet just so happened to be attached to a person, and that person was Christopher Wallace." (Kennebec Morning Sentinel)

Thank You for Your Service
Shortly after Will Swenson was named to receive the Medal of Honor for heroism in Afghanistan, the Army placed the outspoken critic of Army leadership under surveillance because his name appeared, along with others, in a one-paragraph book review on Swenson, whom the book itself didn't mention, said agents questioned him, pawed through his trash and rattled his girlfriend. Then-Secretary of the Army John McHugh agreed the Amazon review triggered the surveillance, which, he suggested, "was really about his award, his criticism of the Army and the hope that agents would find something to shut him up." (The Daily Beast)

Double Trouble
Arthur Mondella, 57, spent five hours with investigators answering complaints that his New York City factory, which makes Maraschino cherries, was dumping syrup and "cherry-related waste" in the waters around the warehouse. When agents noticed a flimsy shelving system attached to an office wall and asked Mondella about it, they said he excused himself, went into the bathroom and shot himself in the head. After the shooting, agents were surprised to uncover "a huge marijuana-growing operation" underneath the warehouse, including 80 pounds of pot, hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and several high-end vehicles. (New York Daily News)

Paper Tiger
The developer of Tiger Woods's new restaurant in Jupiter, Fla., said it couldn't be named after the golfer because Tiger Woods doesn't own commercial rights to his name. Nike does. (CNN)

When Guns Are Outlawed
Authorities accused Travis Lanning, 34, of beating a woman in her 50s with a weapon described as "a club with a spiked ball on the end"—known in medieval times as a mace. The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department reported the woman wasn't robbed but said her attacker threatened to kill her. (The Sacramento Bee)

No Believing Allowed
After a group called the Satanic Temple asked the Orange County (Fla.) School Board for permission to distribute a Satanic coloring book to students, the board voted to ban not only Satanic materials, but also outside Bibles. The World Changers of Florida had previously been allowed to hand out Bibles. (Orlando Sentinel)

Slightest Provocation
Eldridge Dukes, 58, told police in Baton Rouge, La., that he shot his 18-year-old son in the buttocks after the two argued because they were out of orange juice. (Baton Rouge's The Advocate)

•Police who responded to reports of a disturbance involving 20 to 30 teenagers in Burbank, Ill., found that one 17-year-old girl had been stabbed several times in the back. Investigator Mike Dudio said the victim had gone to the "house of her adversary," another 17-year-old girl, to confront her about "issues" the two were having on Twitter. (Chicago Tribune)

Made in the Shade
A London-based architectural firm announced it has developed a skyscraper that doesn't cast a shadow. NBBJ explained the design involves a pair of precisely aligned towers with curved and angled facades that reflect sunlight to the street below and onto each other. "The 'No-Shadow Tower' redirects sunlight to visibly reduce shadows at the base of the towers by 60 percent over typical buildings," a company official said. (Britain's The Telegraph)

School Daze
The University of Iowa allowed "a very small number of students" who said they were offended by a 7-foot-tall statue of a Ku Klux Klan-like robed figure to be exempted from class assignments because it affected their "state of mind." (Cedar Rapids's The Gazette)

Anthony Wiener of the Week
Jeff Landfield, 30, had his name withdrawn as an appointee to the board that oversees judicial ethics after Alaska Gov. Bill Walker discovered "disrespectful images" on Facebook showing Landfield wearing a Speedo and bathing with women. One showed his hands on a woman's breast. Landfield said the images are "not something I hide. I think everybody knows that about me. I'm kind of an open book." (Anchorage Daily News)

Nous Sommes Charlie Hebdo
Surviving staffers of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo are feuding over how to split the surge in revenue since the deadly shootings at its Paris office. Sales rose from 30,000 copies a week to hundreds of thousands, and revenue jumped to $32 million. Eleven members of the staff asked lawyers to turn the magazine into a cooperative so everyone can share the profits. Others oppose the move, saying it's an attempt to get their hands on the 40 percent of shares owned by murdered editor Stephane Charbonnier that now belong to his parents. (New York Daily News)

Chinese officials are cracking down on square dancing, which is popular with elderly women, known as "dancing grannies," who gather in public squares in large groups to perform. Concerned that the "over-enthusiasm of participants has dealt a harmful blow, with disputes over noise and venues," Liu Guoyong, the chief of the government's General Administration of Sports Mass Fitness Department, said a panel will introduce 12 authorized routines, and announce when they are permissible and the volume of the music. "The unified drills will help keep the dancing on the right track where they can be performed in a socially responsible way," said fitness trainer Wang Guangcheng, a member of the panel. (BBC News)

Unhappy Reunion
While former police officer Domingo Villa Arellano, 40, was serving time in a Mexican maximum-security prison for killing his wife in a jealous rage, his long-time girlfriend Ericka Isela Velazquez Cocula, 36, visited with their two children and stepdaughter. When the children complained that their mother was mistreating them, Arellano fatally stabbed Cocula and the three children. He turned the makeshift weapon on himself, but prison guards intervened. (Britain's Metro)

Compiled by Roland Sweet. Authentication on demand.