Odd News Roundup
May 30, 2014 11:45 AM | 610 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Nevermore: Police want to find car-attacking raven

RICHMOND, Maine (AP) — Wanted: A raven that's attacking cars in Maine.

Richmond Police Chief Scott MacMaster tells the Kennebec Journal that the bird has attacked three vehicles, causing $500 in damage in one case.

One owner said he watched the bird land and see its reflection in a window before attacking. The bird damaged gaskets around windshield and windows and the windshield wipers on at least three cars.

One of the victims wants to make to make sure raven attacks are "nevermore." He wants to shoot the bird.

MacMaster advised them to contact the Maine Warden Service.

The raven is not the only animal to attack a car in town in recent weeks. Last month, police had to deal with two goats that climbed atop a car.

Information from: Kennebec Journal, http://www.kjonline.com/ 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Burn victim douses self with Slurpees at 7-Eleven

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — Things were quiet at a convenience store in Southern Oregon when a tattooed man came in and started dousing himself with Hawaiian Punch Slurpees.

The Grants Pass Daily Courier reports the man had suffered burns and was being chased by two others Tuesday afternoon when he ran into the 7-Eleven store in downtown Grants Pass.

Store clerk Charlie Bentley says he didn't know what was going on, but he and another employee kept the two pursuers outside while the man filled his shirt from the Slurpee machine and rubbed the icy concoction on his skin.

Police say they traced the disturbance back to a residence a few blocks away, where a man and a woman were burned with hot oil during a dispute between neighbors. They were not identified.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


41 charged in insurance scam involving dead deer

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Forty-one people in Philadelphia are facing charges in what prosecutors call an elaborate insurance fraud scheme that used dead deer to fake car accidents.

Ronald Galati Sr. is accused of running a $5 million scam out of his auto body shop.

District Attorney Seth Williams said Wednesday that Galati coached customers to claim they'd struck a deer rather than a car. That way, insurance companies would consider them "no fault" accidents and pay the claims without raising the customers' premiums.

Investigators say Galati stored deer carcasses, blood and fur in the back of his shop to use as props.

Also charged are Galati's wife, son and daughter, several insurance adjusters, tow truck drivers, a city official and a police officer.

Defense attorney Anthony Voci said he couldn't comment specifically on the charges because he hadn't seen the grand jury presentment but that his client is innocent until proven guilty.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


School releases diplomas withheld over cap-tossing

NORRIDGE, Ill. (AP) — Administrators at a suburban Chicago high school have had a change of heart after withholding diplomas from an entire class because some students defied instructions not to toss their caps in the air at graduation.

Ridgewood High School in Norridge initially posted a message on its website saying it would only release diplomas if representatives of the graduating class apologized in person at the next school board meeting. It referred to the cap-tossing at Tuesday's ceremony as "disrespectful and insubordinate behavior."

Some parents and students expressed disbelief.

By Thursday morning, officials had reversed course and replaced the announcement with one saying it had "re-thought" its policy and would be sending out diplomas immediately.

Ridgewood High School is known as the home of the Rebels.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Vandal of New York cemetery's flags is groundhog

LOCKPORT, N.Y. (AP) — A sheriff's deputy investigating reports of vandalized flags at an upstate New York cemetery has caught the culprit in the act.

It was a groundhog.

Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour says he sent a deputy to the veterans' section of Cold Springs Cemetery in Lockport after the parents of an Army specialist buried there called reporters earlier this week to complain about the damaged flags.

Groundskeeper Rodney Burdick says about 31 flags were missing from veterans' graves.

Voutour says he wouldn't have believed the groundhog was responsible if his deputy hadn't watched the animal take the flags, break them with its front paws and take them into its den.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Arrests made in theft of Alabama toilet, urinal parts

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Authorities say two men have been arrested in the theft of metal components from urinals and toilets at several Jefferson County restaurants.

Officials have said metal toilet and urinal components were reported stolen from at least five Birmingham-area restaurants. Birmingham police Lt. Sean Edwards said Thursday that the parts, including flush valves, were found at local scrapyards.

Jefferson County sheriff's spokesman Randy Christian has said the items were not made of copper, and would have been of little value if they were sold as scrap metal.

The suspects' identities haven't been released.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Bull fatally shot after escaping Alabama cattle pen

DECATUR, Ala. (AP) — Decatur police say a bull has been fatally shot after escaping from a cattle pen.

Lt. John Crouch said in a statement Thursday that the escaped bull charged at the first officer who arrived on the scene and damaged his patrol car.

Crouch says a Valley Stockyard employee shot the bull after it escaped from one of the company's cattle pens. Crouch says Valley Stockyard employees told authorities that the bull was extremely dangerous.

Police say no injuries have been reported. Additional details on the incident weren't immediately available.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


@hiddencash effort pops up in Boulder

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Someone is hiding envelopes containing cash in Boulder, Colorado, too.

Someone with the Twitter handle @HiddenCash began leaving envelopes containing $100 bills around San Francisco on Friday. By Wednesday, KMGH-TV reported a similar effort called @HiddenCashCO had popped up in Boulder. An anonymous group hid envelopes containing $40 cash and tweeted clues to their locations.

An anonymous Boulder group behind @HiddenCashCO told the station their effort was a way to spread a little happiness.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press.


Chicago's Willis Tower bays reopen after cracks

CHICAGO (AP) — Popular observation ledges at Chicago's Willis Tower have reopened after the towering glass bays were closed for inspection when they appeared to crack beneath visitors' feet.

The Willis Tower temporarily limited access to the bays, known as The Ledge, on Thursday for routine inspection. The rest of the Skydeck on the 103rd floor of the building formerly known as the Sears Tower remained opened.

The glass itself didn't crack Wednesday night and officials say visitors were never in danger. Instead, a protective coating covering the glass produced the spider web of cracks.

A spokesman says Friday that all four bays are open.

The ledges first opened in 2009 and attract visitors in part because walking onto them allows the disconcerting feeling of stepping onto air, hundreds of feet above ground.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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