Odds & Ends
Dateline: England—Police in Long Eaton, Derbyshire, say a life-sized cardboard cutout of a police officer intended to deter crime has had the opposite effect--the item was stolen last week. Police say the cardboard cutout replica of Police Constable Bob Malloy was intended to deter shoplifters at the local co-op store. Thefts have fallen from 36 per month to just one since PC Malloy’s 2-D doppelganger was introduced two years ago. Unfortunately, a cheeky thief walked out with the cardboard crimestopper. The theft was captured on closed-circuit television, and local officials are confident they will make an arrest. The fake police officer cost nearly $200 to produce.
Dateline: North Carolina—A South Carolina man who stored his severed leg in a barbecue smoker that was later sold off in an unpaid storage locker auction is now locked in a custody battle with the North Carolina man who accidentally purchased it. Shannon Whisnant bought the smoker, complete with leg, two weeks ago. After discovering the leg, he called police to come pick it up. As a result of the publicity the unusual case raised, however, Whisnant began exhibiting the mummified limb in his garage. He charged $3 for adults and $1 for children. Now he’s hired a lawyer to get the profit-making limb back from the funeral home where police took it. “He’s making a freak show out of it,” John Wood, the leg’s original owner, told The Charlotte Observer. “He wants to put money in his pocket with this thing.” Whisnant told CNN he bought the item fair and square, but would be willing to share custody of the limb with Wood, so long as he gets it “every Halloween.” Wood, who is heading back to his hometown of Maiden, N.C., to reclaim the limb so that he can one day be cremated with it, says he is not interested in sharing. “I just think it’s despicable,” he told the Observer. “I don’t mind having my 15 minutes of fame, but I’m not looking to really profit off this thing.”
Dateline: Ohio—A state legislator shocked a high school class when the computer he was using projected a photo of a nude woman during a civics lecture. Senator Matthew Barrett was explaining how a bill becomes a law to a class at Norwalk High School when he inserted a data memory stick into the school computer. The image of a nude woman then popped up on the classroom’s wall. Barrett immediately removed the memory stick and continued his lecture without the aid of visuals. Police later interviewed Barrett and school officials seized the data memory stick to determine where the image came from. The school’s technology director determined the stick had a directory of nude images in addition to Barrett’s presentation on civics. “I have no idea where these images came from,” the Democrat told reporters. Barrett said the memory stick was a gift from a legislative liaison at the State Library of Ohio.
Dateline: Pennsylvania—A 39-year-old woman was arrested outside an East Lampeter Township grocery store last Wednesday and charged with doughnut-stealing. Police allege Lynn K. Dailey stole a single doughnut from the Weis Market. Officers were tipped off to the crime by witnesses who saw Dailey walk out of the store at about 2:30 p.m. with the doughnut stuffed into the back of her pants. Within minutes, Dailey was found hiding across the street at a nearby business. Turns out Dailey was wanted for an outstanding bench warrant for a previous parole violation and spent the night in Lancaster County Prison. “A 44-cent doughnut resulted in her being turned over to Lancaster city prison, where she is waiting to see a county judge,” East Lampeter Township police Sgt. James McElheny told the Intelligencer Journal. Asked what type of doughnut police recovered from the woman, McElheny said, “smushed.”
Dateline: Arizona—The sight of an old man being hit by a truck at a bus stop inspired anything but sympathy from observers, who took the opportunity to steal the man’s groceries. Mesa police told KPHO-TV in nearby Phoenix that the elderly victim was waiting for a bus last Tuesday night when a pickup truck swerved off the road and plowed into the stop. One elderly man was sent flying, along with his grocery bags. As the truck sped off, a white plastic bag flapping on its grill, witnesses began grabbing whatever scattered food they could get their hands on. Boro Mitrovich, who was nearly struck himself, said he was the only one who ran to help the man. As a result, Mitrovich got his groceries snatched as well. “One minute it was on the ground, the next minute it was gone,” Mitrovich told KPHO.
Compiled by Devin D. O'Leary. E-mail your weird news to firstname.lastname@example.org.