Saturday, August 27, 2016

Smile for the camera

Here's Secret the Irish dancing dog

Secret the Australian Shepherd and her owner Mary live in Washington.

YouTube link.

There's an addition video of Secret and Mary Irish dancing here.

Man accused of stealing sex toys and the top half of a mannequin from adult store

A man who broke into an Ohio adult entertainment store through a ventilation pipe gathered up an assortment of sex toys and lubricant.

He then departed with the upper half of a $2,000 sex doll that he topped with a $46.99 blonde wig, according to police. Investigators allege that Ellis Doyle, 26, broke into Cirilla’s, a shop in Elyria, at around 2:45am on Saturday and stole several items before leaving.

After entering the building Doyle, police say, “walked around the store and then walked over to the ‘Eva’ mannequin and stripped the clothing off of it and takes the top half of the mannequin and takes a blonde and burgundy wig off a display and placed it on its head and walked out the front door.”

Thanks to the surveillance video, police were able to identify Doyle, who was arrested on a breaking and entering charge. Doyle, who was arraigned on Wednesday on the felony count, is free on $5,000 bond. The owner of Cirilla’s told police that the stolen goods were valued at about $2,650. The most valuable item, the $2000 “Eva” mannequin, was found discarded nearby. Doyle is scheduled for an August 29 preliminary hearing in Elyria Municipal Court.

Utility worker went below and beyond the call of duty to fix burst water pipe

Andrea Adams suffered from her burst pipe under the driveway of her home in Hood County, Texas, last week. When a utility worker from the Acton Municipal Utility District arrived, he went below and beyond the usual call of duty in trying to plug the one-inch pipe that had burst.

"When I walked back outside, the kid was in there," Adams said. So she snapped a photo of 23-year-old Jimmie Cox submerged from the waist up as he reached down five feet to try and clamp the line. Cox said he only took the call to pick up a little overtime.

When he pulled up to the house, though, he saw water spewing in every direction, and Adams in the drive, unsure of what to do next. The hole was about five-and-a-half foot deep. There was a lady running around," he said. At first, he simply went under to try and stop the leak.

YouTube link.

When that wasn't going to work, he had to go a step further. "I wasn't even able to get the clampers, so I had to cut it and put a valve on there when it was underwater," he said. "In this line of work, people do it a lot," he added. "I'm real proud of him," said Adams.

Firefighters responding to smoking car found burning underpants

Firefighters in Madison, Wisconsin, responding to reports of a smoking Mustang found a pair of burning underpants on the passenger seat. Fire officials said the owner of a grey two-door Ford Mustang says his car was running fine until late July. That’s when major storms hit the Madison area and flooded the lot where it’d been parked.

Water was reportedly up to the door handles, and the car had never run the same ever since. According to firefighters, on Wednesday the car was running poorly again. The driver noted a smoke smell coming from around his right hip, the gear shift area. He drove over to the mechanic once again. Too busy to deal with the issue at the moment, the mechanic parked the car on the street, locked it up, and let it rest there until it could be serviced.

Later on, the mechanic turned his attention to the Mustang, but when he walked up he found it filling with smoke. Madison Police blocked off the street and directed firefighters to the parked Mustang. There were no flames visible from the engine or trunk compartment when firefighters arrived, but smoke continued to fill the interior, confined by locked doors and rolled-up windows. The crew put on their self-contained breathing masks just as the mechanic offered up a key.

One firefighter unlocked the door so another could cool the interior with an attack line. According to firefighters, a pair of burning underpants were found on the passenger seat, producing a small fire the size of a kitchen plate. Turning the attack line toward the seat, firefighters wet the underpants and kept fire damage contained to that area. After all fire was out, the Mustang was returned to the owner.

Lobster festival-goers left eating hot dogs after unfortunate delay in delivering the crustaceans

Air Canada have reimbursed the organisers of a festival in Alberta after a boatload of lobsters from Newfoundland were lost in transit, spoiling an event meant to celebrate the coveted crustaceans. Jackie Panasiuk, one of the organisers of the Northern Alberta Lobster Festival in the community of Cotillion, said that they have accepted Air Canada's offer to pay for the shipping and the cost of the seafood. The settlement came after the festival, held earlier this month, was left lobster-less following the mishap.

Instead of soaring thousands of kilometres to their final destination at the Grande Prairie airport, the lobsters were grounded in Toronto, then sidelined in Edmonton. One hundred live lobsters were delayed. By the time the shipment arrived, 18 hours after the end of the festival, much of the lobster had spoiled. "We had people come from all over Alberta, and unfortunately the lobster weren't among the attendees," said Panasiuk, who helped her sister organise the event. "It was a very disappointing event. We ate hot dogs at a lobster fest." On the day of the festival, Air Canada's cargo-tracking system indicated the lobster shipment had arrived at Grande Prairie airport at 4pm.

But when the organisers reached the customer service desk, they were told the shipment hadn't arrived. Severe weather had grounded the flight in Toronto, and there was no guarantee the lobster would arrive in Alberta before the end of day. Panasiuk said she spent hours on the phone, dealing with agents who refused to apologise or answer her questions. The lost lobsters turned up at the Edmonton airport two hours later, but Panasiuk said the airline wasn't accommodating in getting them to their final destination. Instead of letting the lobster rot, Panasiuk said Air Canada could have transferred the crates to a different flight or offered to pay for alternative transport.

"Air Canada offered to allow us to pay to taxi them up to Cotillion - and a cab ride just to get them up to Grande Prairie would have cost $750. And we were supposed to pay for it." The seafood finally arrived in Grande Prairie at around 10am the day after the festival. "We cooked and froze them and distributed them to community members, because nobody has enough freezer space for that many lobsters," Panasiuk said. In a statement, Air Canada representative Isabelle Arthur said "very bad weather" was to blame for the delays. The shipment missed the last connecting flight in Toronto and was sent the next morning on the first available flight. In addition, a "complex itinerary" had made it challenging to provide real-time tracking information.

Woman paid friend to cut off her hand and foot in failed insurance scam

A Vietnamese woman paid a friend to cut off her hand and foot in a failed bid to claim an insurance payout. The woman, identified only as L T N, told police she had been struck by a train as she walked along the tracks and was rescued by her friend, D.

The 30-year-old submitted a claim to her insurance company for 3.5bn dong (£112,000, $157,000). In Vietnam the average annual income is £1,600 ($2,100). “N hired D to cut her hand and foot, then continued to have him report false information to the police,” said Bac Tu Liem police chief Nguyen Thanh Tung.

L T N checked into a hospital in Hanoi in May with a third of her left foot and a third of her left hand severed. Doctors told her they could not reattach the limbs. Hanoi police declined to comment the case, but reports said the woman offered her friend about $2,000 to perform the deed.

“The greatest shame is that N, instead of claiming the money, has suffered a huge loss by losing both her hand and foot,” Tung said. The woman is still being treated for the wounds. Police have said they they will not be investigating further and no action will be taken against her. “Her case sends a warning that people should not attempt insurance fraud at the expense of their own health,” said Tung, adding it was the first case of the kind he had seen in Vietnam.

Brolga with an identity crisis thinks it is cattle station's working dog

Brollie the brolga is the resident pet at a remote cattle station in Queensland, Australia, and appears to have an identity crisis. "Her favourite option [for food] is dog biscuits; she actually eats more dog biscuits than my two dogs eat [and] has her own bowl out with the dogs," grazier Karen Price said. After being rescued from town more than 12 months ago, Brollie the brolga was given to the Price family. It was not long before Brollie became "boss of the property" at Fort Constantine station, north of Cloncurry, in north-west Queensland.

"We have got some poddy calves and a pet sheep who we let out of a pen near the house and Brollie is funny with them," Ms Price said. "Last week the sheep kept trying to come out of the gate and [Brollie] was herding it up and putting it back into the pen. Every now and then, my two dogs will bark when I pull up at our front gate and if Brollie is around, she will start letting out a noise as well, as if to say 'well I'd better make a bit of noise too'." Brollie has also taken it upon herself to get involved in station work. "She is not a bad worker [but] she doesn't exactly go mustering," Ms Price said.

"It's more when we have already mustered and we have worked the cattle and are taking cattle back to their paddocks - she always tags along; she loves it." Ms Price said Brollie's love of dog biscuits and her interest in cattle work may have her believing she is a working dog. But that is not the only identity confusion Brollie the brolga faces. There has also been some debate at Fort Constantine over the sex of the brolga. Ms Price remains adamant Brollie is female, but some staff have taken it upon themselves to nickname the bird Benny the Brolga. Nonetheless, Brollie/Benny has become quite a personality around the station. "She is a free spirited bird. We don't lock her up, she comes and goes as she pleases," Ms Price said.

YouTube link.

"She has her favourites with people and is definitely the boss of the complex. She loves dancing which is a thing brolgas do, often the staff have a dance with her, and she does fly; quite often you will hear her, she calls out before she takes off. In the afternoons, Brollie will do a bit of a loop around the whole place and then she will come back and quite often you will find her over at the recreation club with all the girls and fellas having a beer." They say brolgas mate for life and the hope at Fort Constantine is that Brollie will soon find love. "It would be nice one day to think she will find a mate," Ms Price said. "I think for now she thinks I am her mother because I am the one that feeds her and she follows me around the place. Hopefully she will find a mate one day, even though I will miss her when she goes."

Motorist surprised to receive £1.4 million bill after parking at shopping centre three times

A motorist was surprised after getting a car parking bill for £1.4 million. James Adams parked in the centre of Ashford, Kent, for his regular shopping trips last month.

He used the mobile phone app Parkmobile to pay for parking charges on three visits in July, and logged on to pay the bill at the end of the month. But when the invoice finally arrived for July, he was surprised to count five more zeros than he expected, with an overall invoice for more £1.41 million.

The car park charges £4.50 for more than four hours of parking, which means that he could park there for 313,333 days in a row, or 858 years. Mr Adams said: “I was quite shocked, but I knew it had been an error. I dread to think that it might have frightened the life out of some other people.

“I logged into my account to the car park and saw there were too many zeros. I spoke to the company and they said there had been a cock-up at their end and I saw the funny side of it.” Parkmobile has apologised for the error, which should have in fact been a bill for £14.10.

Terror pigeons snatched child's bacon sandwich

Pigeons terrorising shoppers have attacked a child and snatched the bacon sandwich she was eating from her hand. The upset mother of the toddler has said she will not return to Burton-on-Trent in Staffordshire until the issue with the pigeons has been dealt with.

Now a move has been launched to rid a popular shopping street of the birds. The problems are caused by people feeding the pigeons bits of food, which attracts them back to the spot outside Coopers Square shopping centre in Station Street.

The latest incident is one of many where people eating food in the area have been attacked by the birds. Benches have now been removed in a bid to deter people from sitting and feeding the birds, which, Coopers Square said, causes an 'unhygienic environment'.

Michael McHardy, community enforcement officer at East Staffordshire Borough Council, said: "We are trying to stop people feeding them so are putting up posters urging people not to feed them. It was after a girl had been eating a bacon buttie with her mother. Then a pigeon grabbed hold of her food as she was holding it. Her mother complained to the council and said she would never shop here again."

Friday, August 26, 2016

Giddy up

Dog wallows in pool filled with tennis balls

Chris the dog appears to be enjoying his stay at The Barkhaus in Miami, Florida.

YouTube link. Facebook video link.

Woman allegedly stabbed husband for drinking her beer

A woman from Fayette County, Pennsylvania, is facing charges after state police say she stabbed her husband for drinking her beer. Tracey Giffin, 45, is accused of stabbing her husband, Joseph Giffin, inside their home in North Union Township on Sunday night.

When state police arrived, they said Joseph Giffin had blood on his chest and stomach that was coming from cuts to his neck, chest and head. "(Joseph Giffin) related that he was drinking with the defendant and she had gone to bed.

"She had gotten up and was upset that he had drank one of her beers," state police wrote in an affidavit of probable cause. "He related (that) an argument took place, and she then grabbed a pair of scissors. He related (that) she then put cut marks on his chest, neck and head. He related (that) she then bit him on the arms and thumb."

YouTube link.

Tracey Giffin was taken to the Fayette County Jail in lieu of posting bail. Tracey Giffin was also arrested in 2013 after state police said she fought with her then-boyfriend, William Balas, over barbecue sauce. Investigators in that case said Balas apparently forgot to pick up the condiment from the store on Christmas Eve and that when he returned home, a physical fight occurred. Balas and Giffin were charged after police said Balas hit Giffin and she bit him.

Man unhappy about sap from neighbour's tree cut it down causing it to fall onto his own home

A man in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, cut down his neighbour's tree over the weekend because he thought it was ruining his car. The tree ended up hitting his own apartment house. Police said Raymond Mazzarella grabbed a chainsaw and cut down the tree in his neighbour's yard on Saturday afternoon. The tree sat in his neighbour's yard, but it had branches above his parking space. Those branches would drip sap onto his car.

When he cut through the 36-inch wide trunk, the tree fell onto part of his own apartment building. “He decided it was the best thing to do, to get rid of the tree, where he thought it was going to go, I don't know,” said Terry Best, a Pittston Township code enforcement officer. Authorities condemned the building in Pittston Township, and five people have to find new places to stay. Rick Woods also lived in the apartment house until it was condemned.

When the tree fell, Woods was in his apartment, sitting on his couch, watching TV. All of a sudden, he heard a big crash. “I thought a tractor trailer lost his brakes and ran into something, not realising it was the house,” he said. Police said Mazzarella was then checked out at a hospital. Upon his release on Monday afternoon, a neighbour saw Mazzarella trespassing near the apartment house and called police. When the neighbour confronted him, Mazzarella punched him. The neighbour pulled out a stun gun to protect himself.

YouTube link.

Mazzarella then started hitting him with a baseball bat. Mazzarella is charged with assault and harassment and is locked up in the Luzerne County jail on $10,000 bail. The Red Cross is helping the others who lived in the apartment building with temporary places to stay. That's all Woods is hoping for. “I find a place to live. That's about it,” he said. Officials aren't sure when or if people will be allowed back in the building because the foundation has shifted. “It's going to be a long time before somebody gets back in here,” Best said.

Pantless woman accused of DUI called friend for a lift who was also pantless and arrested for DUI

Police in Troy, Michigan, stopped a black Impala driven by 23-year-old Samantha Alfaro of Lansing for suspected DUI earlier this month. The female officer who made the stop was surprised to find that Alfaro was naked from the waist down. Police dash cam video filmed what happened. "Where's your clothes? Where's your pants?" the officer asked.

Asked how much she had to drink, Alfaro responded, "Too much. Just take me to jail already!" The officer was more than willing to grant Alfaro's request, but there is a dress code. "Try and put your pants on. You're going to be getting out of the car," the officer said. The dash cam shows the officer probing the car and questioning a 19-year-old passenger.

Alfaro remained half-naked and unafraid during much of the encounter. But with the pending arrival of another male officer, a "cover-up" ensued. "Just put your pants on okay cause there's a male officer coming and I don't want you to be exposed, you know?," the female officer said to Alfaro. Alfaro complied and was arrested for operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, first offence.

YouTube link.

When Alfaro called a friend for a lift home the story took another strange twist. Jocelyn Reardon, 20, was stopped for DUI 200 yards from the Troy police station when she arrived to pick up Alfaro. Reardon was wearing a T-shirt and little else. "Are you wearing any clothes other than the shirt?," an officer asked. Reardon wasn't wearing any pants either. She was also charged with DUI.

Maritime museum has recruited security dog to deter pooing seagulls

Bailey, a rescue working dog is the Australian National Maritime Museum's newest recruit. The border collie was hired three months ago to help the museum scare away seagulls which have been causing a mess on the wharf in Pyrmont, Sydney, as well as the vessels docked there.

"Normally when there are seagulls down here, [Bailey] will spot them and I'll let him off the lead and I'll say, 'Bailey go'," Adrian Snelling, dog handler and head of security, said. "He just automatically chases the birds." Mr Snelling said the museum had tried, unsuccessfully, other methods to deter the seagulls such as using water sprays and fake birds.

They decided to get Bailey after researching that dogs were routinely used in airports to scare away birds. He was formerly a working dog and was living in foster care. While the wharf has definitely seen an improvement in droppings, Mr Snelling said the sneaky seagulls had relocated their roosting sites to the top decks of the vessels where Bailey is unable to reach.

And staff were forced to issue Bailey with a mandatory uniform after he started taking his job too seriously. "He wears a dog flotation device, the same as what any human would wear on a boat," Mr Snelling said. "He has ended up in the harbour four or five times now from being overeager." When he isn't on shift, Bailey sleeps in the security control room and has been a "great morale booster" for the other staff, Mr Snelling added.

Cattle given glow-in-the dark horns in bid to prevent accidents

Police in India have started pasting radium stickers on the horns of cows hoping that the glow will help drivers avoid hitting stray cattle and evade an accident.

Balaghat police in Madhya Pradesh have stuck the stickers, that glow in the dark, on about 100 cattle-heads over the last five days.

“A lot of accidents were taking place at night involving cattle that were either stationary or had strayed,” said Balaghat additional SP Akash Bhuria.

In-charge of Balaghat traffic police station Kailash Chouhan added: “It’s not easy to attach the stickers because some cows chase the policemen.”

Man to carry 12-foot cross up Mount Snowdon after calling from God

A man from Llandysul in Ceredigion, Wales, says he is planning to carry a huge wooden cross from St Davids in Pembrokeshire to the top of Mount Snowdon after being set the gruelling challenge by God.

Standing 12ft tall, measuring 6ft wide and made from 4x4 cedar timber, the cross weighs 25kg, meaning that Emyr Mathias’ month-long hike from 13 September will not be an easy walk of faith.

Emyr, 48, a Christian for the past 31 years, says he is taking on this physical and emotional challenge in response to a calling he received from God. “I had a vision that the Lord wanted me to carry a St Davids flag from St Davids to Snowdon,” he said.

“I thought that was ridiculous at first, but then the Lord said about the cross.” Despite rating his fitness as “average”, Emyr has now embarked on a rigorous fitness regime in preparation for the march. “I walked 15 miles with the cross the other day and felt good afterwards,” he said. “I started at 8am and finished at around 3pm."

Police to increase patrols after man reportedly urinated in river

Police officers are to carry out more patrols after a man was reported to have urinated into the River Cale at Wincanton, Somerset.

PCSO Janet Sparkes said reports had been received of adults drinking in the skate park, and one of them relieving himself into the river that runs nearby.

Ms Sparkes spoke at a meeting on Wincanton Town Council on Monday. She said: "Members of public have made us aware of adult drinkers in the skate park.

"Also a male was seen urinating in the river. Regular patrols are being carried out by officers in order to establish the identity of the offenders."

Police issue CCTV appeal after sausage theft

Police have released CCTV images taken of a man they would like to speak to following the theft of sausages from a Marks and Spencers store.

Detectives have issued two pictures captured on the CCTV system at the store in the centre of Ormskirk, Lancashire.

The theft of the food goods was committed at the store some time on Tuesday afternoon. Police say they would now like to speak to the man in the pictures.

A spokesman for Ormskirk and Burscough Neighbourhood Police said: “We are looking to speak to this male in connection with a theft of sausages from Marks and Spencers at Ormskirk on the afternoon of Tuesday 23rd August 2016. Do you know this male? Please contact us.”