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 V.14 No.40 | October 6 - 12, 2005 

Odds & Ends

Scott Rickson

Dateline: Poland—An armed man stormed into the Tschenstochau Salon in the southern Polish town of Czestochowa and demanded a free haircut for his girlfriend. The man, who has not been caught, forced the salon's owner to dye, cut and style his girlfriend's hair at gunpoint. The hair-crazed gunman was obviously unhappy with the results, however, as he returned the next day, gun in hand, and demanded that the hairdresser fix his girlfriend's do. This time, he insisted on hair extensions to fix the length.

Dateline: Washington—A 20-year-old woman took a red Buick Riviera for a test drive in Seattle's Overlake district last week--piloting the vehicle straight into a swimming pool. According to the Seattle Times, the incident took place shortly after 8 a.m. at the Racquet Club Estates. Witnesses say the woman had arrived to look at the vehicle, which was up for sale. As soon as the woman got behind the wheel, the car careened out of the parking lot, went through two chain-link fences, sped down a slight embankment and came to rest in the condo swimming pool. “I heard a huge crash and then there was a car in the pool,” Jennifer Myrick, a second-floor resident at the condo told the Times. Myrick's boyfriend, Kris Aasgaarden, leaped into the pool to rescue the driver, but was unable to break the windows. Before the car sank, Fire Department rescue crews showed up and used their axes to get the woman out through the vehicle's sunroof. According to police spokesperson Michael Chiu, the woman somehow mistook the gas pedal for the brake. She was taken to nearby Overlake Hospital for treatment of hypothermia. The Riviera was eventually removed from the pool by two tow trucks. No word on whether or not the woman bought the car.

Dateline: Michigan—Two cousins from Mount Clemens now stand charged under an obscure 1846 law prohibiting “dueling.” The two unnamed men apparently got into a mutual knife fight last Monday afternoon outside their home. One of the two suffered a stab wound. The injured man, who is 19 years old and recovering from non-life threatening injuries at Mount Clemens General Hospital, is not cooperating with sheriff's investigators. The uninjured 31-year-old man fled on foot and was still at large later that week. According to the sheriff's office, the older suspect is also wanted on a prior drug conviction. According to Sheriff Mark Hackel, the two men, who reside in the same home with other relatives, disagreed over a $30 debt. Wielding a knife, the older cousin confronted the younger cousin, who pulled out his own knife and accepted the challenge. “I've heard there are dueling statutes,” local attorney Steven Rabout told the Macomb Daily. “But I've never been curious enough to look them up.” According to the anti-dueling law, “Any person who shall engage in a duel with any deadly weapons, although no homicide ensue, or who shall challenge another to fight such a duel, or shall send or deliver any written or verbal message, purporting or intending to be such a challenge, although no duel ensue, shall be guilty of a felony.” In addition to carrying a maximum penalty of $5,000, the law states that anyone convicted of dueling “shall also be incapable of holding or of being elected or appointed to any place of honor, profit or trust, under the constitution or laws of the state.”

Dateline: Pennsylvania—A judge is considering whether or not it's OK to ban a murder suspect's nickname from court. A lawyer for Demetrius “Scuz” Fiorentino says that calling his client by his nickname might make jurors think of him as scuzzy. In his filing, the lawyer cites the definition of scuzzball as “an unpleasant, dirty or dangerous person; creep.” A prosecutor on the case, however, says it will be nearly impossible for witnesses to identify the defendant without using his nickname, since most people know him simply as Scuz. Mr. Fiorentino is charged with shooting another man last year during a botched drug deal at a crack house.

Dateline: Florida—Apparently, criminals do return to the scene of the crime. Cashier Pam Pease was working at the Parade gas station in Pensacola, when she recognized a car that was pulling up to the pumps. It was, in fact, her car--which she had reported stolen from in front of the station less than an hour before. Investigators say another employee recognized the suspects, Artemio Castillo and Ernesto Garcia. While employees called 911, the two suspects made a run for it. Another service station worker trailed them, and the alleged car thieves were captured a short while later. Officers say they have no idea why the thieves didn't just go some place else to gas up.

Compiled by Devin D. O'Leary. E-mail your weird news to devin@alibi.com.

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