Odds & Ends

Odds & Ends

Devin D. O'Leary
5 min read
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Dateline: Mexico

In a fit of irony a 117-year-old woman died a few hours after receiving her birth certificate.
El Sol de Mexico newspaper reports that 117-year-old Trinidad Alvarez Lira had been waiting years for proof she had been born in 1898. Because she lacked the proper documentation, Lira had been denied government old age benefits. But the city Department of Social Development announced late last month they had finally granted the woman an official birth certificate. Alvarez reportedly died of a heart attack, heart disease and hypertension shortly after posing for pictures with her new birth certificate on June 29. Unfortunately, she did not live long enough to cash any government checks. According to the newspaper, Mexico City’s oldest woman had no husband, no children and was “devoted to household chores.”

Dateline: Germany

Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper reports that an elderly woman used a ballpoint pen to fill out empty spaces in a crossword-themed work of art at Nuremberg’s Neues Museum. The defacement took place during an organized visit by local senior citizens. The woman is being investigated for damage to property, although there is no suggestion that the 91-year-old did it maliciously. The artwork in question, avant garde artist Arthur Köpcke’s 1965 painting “Reading-work-piece,” was on loan to the museum from a private collection. According to the BBC it is is insured for 80,000 Euros ($89,000). The unnamed woman allegedly told the museum that her actions should not have come as a surprise as the institution had not put up a notice instructing visitors not to write on the art. Museum officials say they believe the work can be restored.

Dateline: Tennessee

Firefighters responded to a report of a fire at an apartment in North Knoxville and found that the resident had torched her bathroom trying to cook a brisket in the bathtub. Knoxville Fire Department Capt. D.J. Corcoran told the
Knoxville News Sentinel the incident was “a first in our books.” On the evening of Monday, July 11, fire crews responded to a call to the 4000 block of Scheel Road where they found a middle-aged woman fanning smoke from her apartment. Inside the residence they discovered she had lit a small, wood-burning grill inside the bathtub with the meat draped over a wire rack set across the tub’s rim. The heat from the fire evidently melted the fiberglass tub. “The tub and the brisket were a total loss,” Corcoran said. The apartment below also suffered minor water damage. No one was injured. Capt. Corcoran told the newspaper that more than 50 percent of all residential fires are, in fact, cooking-related. “With that said,” he added, “most all of those documented fires are in the kitchen.”

Dateline: Florida

The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office reported on its Facebook page that a 28-year-old Fort Walton Beach motorist was cited for driving into a house “with her eyes closed while praying.” The woman was allegedly traveling eastbound on Marcia Drive just after 10pm on the night of July 7 when she failed to stop at a stop sign, traveled through an intersection and into a front yard where her vehicle struck a residence. Investigators said she tried to back out but became stuck in sand. She told the deputy she was praying at the time and had her eyes closed. She was issued a citation for reckless driving with property damage.

Dateline: Missouri

Sheriff’s deputies in Jasper County arrested a couple for allegedly riding naked on what proved to be a stolen lawn mower.
The Joplin Globe reports deputies responded to a call at 8:42am on the morning of July 12. They contacted a 55-year-old man and a 40-year-old woman at a house with a riding mower parked in the front yard. Detective Tim Williams told the newspaper the couple admitted to riding the mower home naked after their clothes were stolen while they were skinny dipping in a nearby creek. Further investigation led the detective to conclude the lawn mower did not belong to the naturalists. They were arrested on suspicion of stealing.

Dateline: Colorado

Investigators say an off-duty sheriff’s deputy in Arapahoe Country managed a “one in a billion” shot, firing a bullet directly down the barrel of a suspect’s gun. The shooting happened in January when Deputy Jose Marquez shot at an attempted-robbery suspect, but the detail recently came to light when prosecutors wrote a letter announcing that the deputy was justified in discharging his weapon. The
Aurora Sentinel in suburban Denver reports that Marquez was visiting his girlfriend’s apartment when two suspects approached him in the parking lot with guns drawn. The off duty officer said the suspects fired first, hitting him in the shoulder and abdomen. Marquez shot back, striking Jhalil Meshesha in the leg and sending a .45 caliber bullet down the barrel of Meshesha’s .40 caliber handgun, jamming the weapon.

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

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