Alibi V.27 No.40 • Oct 4-10, 2018 

Odds & Ends

Odds and Ends

Dateline: Florida

Police say they might not be able to stop a man from doing yard work in the nude, despite complaints from neighbors. The Orlando Sentinel reports that residents in Stuart, Fla., have called police on multiple occasions after witnessing their neighbor allegedly washing his car and working in the yard while completely naked. But authorities have so far been unable to move against the man. State statutes allow people to be nude on their own property as long as they are not engaging in “vulgar, indecent, lewd, or lascivious” behavior. Police say the man has yet to exhibit any of these behaviors and has only been seen on his own property. However, Martin County Sheriff William Snyder told Fox News that police are in the process of obtaining a warrant for the man's arrest and a case is being built against him. Authorities believe elements from two statutes will allow them to arrest and prosecute the man.

Dateline: Texas

Authorities discovered $18 million worth of cocaine hidden in a box of bananas that were donated to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. According to CNN, officers went last month to pick up two pallets of donated fruit when they noticed something was wrong about the weight. Upon further inspection, they found 540 packages of cocaine hidden in a banana box. The donation was shipped from Port of America in Freeport, Texas, but the identity of the person or persons responsible for the contraband has yet to be determined. The Drug Enforcement Agency and US Customs and Border Protection are investigating the incident.

Dateline: Indiana

A man who allegedly pistol whipped his friend during an argument over a Bruno Mars song will not be facing charges. IndyStar reports Roger D. Washburn was arrested last week after entering into a heated dispute over the identity of the singer of an unnamed Bruno Mars song. According to police, Washburn and two longtime friends were drinking heavily when the song came on. Washburn believed the singer to be Prince, and began to argue the point with one of the other men. When his friend brought forth proof of the singer's identity, Washburn allegedly stood up and drew a gun. The friend responded by calling him a “chickenshit.” Washburn then allegedly used the weapon to strike him on the face and arm. Police say the gun went off twice during the altercation, but no one was shot. According to reports, the witnesses waited a few hours before deciding to report the incident to police. When confronted, Washburn admitted to hitting his friend with a .38 revolver. Though he was arrested at the time, no criminal charges have been pursued.

Dateline: Maryland

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have discovered that octopuses “become more social” when they're on ecstasy. According to BBC News, scientists exposed octopuses to MDMA, more commonly known as ecstasy, to study how social interactions evolved in different animal species. MDMA causes the human brain to release large amounts of seratonin, the chemical which causes us to be more social. While their brains are very different to those of humans, the octopuses seemed to be affected by the mood-altering drug in a similar way. The study was conducted using three connected water chambers. In one chamber, researchers placed a plastic toy. In another, they placed a single octopus. Four different octopuses were then placed into the tank. The time each spent with both the lone octopus and the plastic toy were recorded. Then, the octopuses were exposed to liquid MDMA before being returned to the water chambers. According to the paper, all four octopuses spent more time with the lone octopus than they had before taking the drug. Researchers say the study shows that complex social interactions are based on basic signaling chemicals rather than complex brain functions. Experts have questioned the study's methodology, however, and warn that more research of a similar nature will have to be conducted before the findings can truly be interpreted.

Dateline: Colorado

A young boy called 911 for help with his math homework, and it worked. Fort Collins police released a recording of an emergency call last week in which an unnamed 10-year-old boy told dispatcher Chris Clow that he wasn't calling because of an emergency, but that he needed help with his homework. “I can't figure out what 71 divided by 3,052 is,” the child told Clow. After a few questions concerning the nature of the assignment, Clow asked the boy if he had reversed the numbers. After discovering that the math problem was indeed the other way around—3,052 divided by 71—Clow turned to a calculator for the answer: 42.98. A police spokesperson told ABC News that it isn't uncommon for 911 dispatchers to receive non-emergency calls from time to time. “This particular problem wasn't the kind we typically handle but we're glad Dispatch was able to help solve it,” stated the post attached to the audio clip on the Fort Collins Police Services' Facebook page. “Though it should be noted that FCPD is not responsible for incorrect homework answers.”

Compiled by Joshua Lee. Email your weird news to josh@alibi.com.