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News » News of the Weird


Perplexing people, kooky crimes and odd headlines from around the globe.



What began as a quiet family dinner at home quickly escalated into a front-yard brawl on April 22 in Bedford, Va. Fox News reported that Mark Turner, 56, his girlfriend, the girlfriend's son and the son's girlfriend had retired to the front yard after dinner when an argument broke out between the two men about whether Chevrolet or Ford makes better vehicles. According to the Bedford County Commonwealth's Attorney Wes Nance, Turner allegedly pulled out a knife but ended up slashing his girlfriend's back as she tried to calm the situation. Next Turner went inside and retrieved a gun, but as the girlfriend again tried to get between him and her son, he allegedly shot the woman five times in the leg. He also shot the son in the arm, and two of his stray bullets hit the son's girlfriend in her back and cheek. Finally, according to prosecutors, Turner barricaded himself in the house, where police eventually shot him with a beanbag round and took him into custody. Turner was charged with felony malicious wounding, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Free Speech
TSA agents at Juneau International Airport logged unexpected cargo on April 15 when a "large organic mass" was spotted in a traveler's carry-on bag. TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein explained to KTOO that such a flag can indicate the presence of explosives. However, when agents opened the bag, they found a plastic grocery bag full of moose "nuggets." The passenger told the TSA officers that he collects them to present to "politicians and their (bleep) policies," Farbstein explained. The passenger was not detained and was allowed to continue on with his bag of moose poop. Later that day, the Anchorage Daily News reported that a man was seen at the state capitol, handing out baggies of moose nuggets in protest of Gov. Mike Dunleavy's proposed budget.

News That Sounds Like a Joke
Arnold J. Teeter, 49, became angry while dining at a Perkins restaurant in Painesville, Ohio, on April 16. First, he threw a menu at his waitress; when a manager stepped in, Teeter upped his game and grabbed his pet iguana from under his shirt, twirled it in the air and launched it toward the manager. Teeter was charged with disorderly conduct—and with cruelty to animals, because Copper, the turquoise iguana, suffered a broken leg in the incident. The Lake County Humane Society has taken the female lizard into protective custody and is trying to raise money for the surgery she needs, reports WEWS. No word on whether the Perkins manager suffered any injuries.

John Gardner was minding his own business, driving to work in Conway, S.C., on April 30 when "a big, black dot" flew into his windshield, shattering the glass, according to WBTW. "I didn't get hurt at all," Gardner said, though he was covered in glass fragments. The flying object didn't fare so well: A nearby truck had hit a tortoise crossing the road and projected it into Gardner's car. Rob's Auto Body said the animal died on impact. The truck driver was also unhurt, but it's estimated that repairs to Gardner's car will cost about $2,000.

Crime Report
Sometimes a girl just wants a pretty new thing. But Aida Melcado, 18, and an unnamed minor accomplice, let greed get the best of them. Lower Allen Township Police say Melcado and her helper browsed through the Victoria's Secret store in the Capital City Mall in Bethesda, Md., on April 7, carrying large shopping bags and talking on cellphones. While the minor acted as a lookout, Melcado allegedly shoveled delicates into her bag, to wit: 375 hipster panties (worth $3,937.50), 375 cut thongs ($3,937.50), 1,000 thongs ($10,500) and 250 raw-cut hip-hugging panties ($2,625), for a grand total of $21,000. Police told WPMT they later identified the thieves during a drug investigation in Fairfax County, Va.

Likely Story
Police in Tempe, Ariz., said Vanessa Santillan, 40, and her boyfriend were arguing as she was driving on April 21. When she stopped, he exited the car and crossed the street to a sidewalk. Santillan then honked the horn, and her boyfriend returned a rude gesture, according to KTVK/KPHO. That's when police say Santillan drove onto the sidewalk and hit the man, causing injuries serious enough to require a trip to the hospital and stitches. Santillan drove away, but later spoke to police saying she wasn't aware it was "that bad" when she left the scene, further elaborating that she had "blacked out" and didn't remember hitting the boyfriend—even though her car had visible damage. She was booked on one count of aggravated assault and one count of failing to remain at the scene of a collision with injuries.

News of the Weird reported in May 2018 about Thomas Tramaglini, the superintendent of Kenilworth Public Schools in New Jersey, who pleaded guilty to defecating on the Holmdel High School track and football field "on a daily basis." On April 30, Fox News reported, Tramaglini filed a lawsuit against the Holmdel Police Department for releasing his mug shot, claiming doing so tarnished his reputation and "altered his life forever." Tramaglini's actions earned him the nickname "pooperintendent," and he claims to be "underemployed" and "fighting for any semblance of normalcy he can create for himself and his family." However, he also negotiated a "separation agreement" of more than $100,000 with the district in August 2018.

Runners of the Belfast City Marathon on May 5 who felt the course would never end had a legitimate reason, CNN reported. Organizing committee chairman David Seaton admitted later that "approximately 460 additional meters were added to the officially measured course of 26.2 miles," a difference of about three-tenths of a mile. Seaton blamed the mistake on "human error, with the lead car diverting from the official route." Organizers promised to adjust runners' times to account for the additional mileage.

Wait, What?
Bartender Sarah Krueger was hoping to raise awareness about women's health issues at Yuzu in Lakewood, Ohio, when she introduced a new cocktail, the Even Can't Literally—a red berry margarita sporting a tampon applicator as a garnish. She told WJW that $1 from the sale of each drink goes to the Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center in Cleveland, and patrons can decide whether they want the garnish included or not. Critics were quick to complain on social media, but bar owner Dave Bumba defended the promotion: "This is a small way to bring awareness to real good causes that we are behind." Bumba also assured customers that the health department had OK'd putting the feminine hygiene product in the drinks.

The Continuing Crisis
In Spokane Valley, Wash., two thieves must have been really thirsty on May 1 when they heaved a 700-pound soda vending machine into the back of a pickup truck. Ryan King, owner of ProFormance Lube, noticed that the "monstrosity" of a vending machine was gone as soon as he arrived at work that morning. When he checked his surveillance camera footage, he saw two men loading it into the truck—even though the store is right across the street from a police station. "It just goes to show how brazen criminals are," King told KHQ. The machine was later found but was damaged beyond repair. Police are still on the lookout for the thieves.

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