At Bull City Burger and Brewery in Durham, N.C., April is Exotic Meat Month. This year, the restaurant offered a tarantula challenge. Customers were invited to enter their name in a raffle. If they were chosen, they could claim a $30 tarantula burger, which included a pasture-raised beef patty, gruyere cheese, spicy chili sauce — and an oven-roasted zebra tarantula. Those who finished the burger received a commemorative “tarantula challenge” T-shirt.
— Christina C. Ochoa of Wichita, Kan., and her mom, Christy L. Ochoa, explained that more than fifty $5 withdrawals Christina made from a Central National Bank ATM during a five-day period in mid-January were for a “money cake” she was making as a gift for someone. But the bank says the faulty ATM was dispensing $100 bills instead of $5 bills, and that Christina received $14,120 instead of $1,485. In a Jan. 22 lawsuit, the bank sought $11,607.36, plus interest. The bank is also trying to seize two cars the Ochoas bought, claiming that the $3,000 down payment for one of them was made up entirely of $100 bills.
— In Boston, trolley driver Thomas Lucey, 46, of Saugus, Mass., was indicted Feb. 21 for paying a man $2,000 to attack him while he was on the job on Oct. 30, 2016, so that Lucey could collect workers’ compensation and disability insurance. The “attacker” wore a Halloween mask and carried a plastic pumpkin, from which police obtained fingerprints used to identify him. A grand jury in Suffolk County brought charges of insurance fraud, workers’ compensation fraud, misleading a police investigation and perjury.
When In Doubt, Steal An Ambulance
Lady Lake, Fla., resident Danny Konieczny, 61, was at home when a neighbor called 911 to report Konieczny was drunk and suicidal. First responders took him to the The Villages Hospital in The Villages, Fla., where he waited for two hours to see a doctor before getting exasperated and stealing an ambulance to drive home. Konieczny parked the ambulance in the driveway of the neighbor he thought had called the police about him. When Lake County Sheriff’s investigators tracked him down, they found Konieczny curled up in the trunk of his own car in his garage. Konieczny was put on no-bond status because he is still on probation from a 2017 drunk driving charge.
OK. Yes. I Ran Over Myself.
Things went from bad to worse for 30-year-old Isaac Bonsu when he was charged in Alexandria, Va., with felony hit-and-run. Fairfax County Police pulled Bonsu over for an equipment violation. He apparently forgot to put his vehicle in “park” before he exited it. Bonsu can be seen on police dashcam video running in front of the car and then being struck by it. Unhurt, Bonsu jumped up and kept running, but police were able to catch him. The Associated Press reported that Bonsu was charged with driving while intoxicated (his third) and possessing marijuana — along with the hit-and-run.
The Little-Known Crumb Dropping Fee
In Manchester, England, 75-year-old Peter Vipham of Rawtenstall, Lancashire, was shocked when he was approached by two women who identified themselves as law enforcement agents. The officers told Vipham, a retired shoemaker, that he had been filmed littering when a small crumb of the pork pie he had been eating fell to the ground, and he flicked another crumb off his coat. Vipham offered to pick up the crumbs, but told Metro News he was not given the opportunity to view the video footage. He refused to pay the fine. “If I had dropped litter I would pay the (50-pound) fine. But I would never drop litter. I am against litter 100 percent. I hate it,” Vipham declared. A Manchester City Council spokesperson said the city would review the evidence and contact Vipham to discuss his case.
The Next Time You Feel Like Swallowing A Lighter
An unnamed Chinese man “accidentally” swallowed a plastic and metal lighter 20 years ago. He neglected to seek medical attention until recently, when he began experiencing stomach pains and other symptoms. Using a camera inserted in the man’s body to locate the lighter, doctors at Dujiangyan Medical Center in Chengdu City, Sichuan Province, performed not one, but two surgeries to extract the item. The Global Times reported that the lighter had been severely corroded by gastric juices.
Would You Prefer A Car Or Some Candy?
The company that makes Necco Wafers announced in March that it would shut down in May unless a buyer was found. Since then, crazed Necco fans have been stockpiling candy. “Necco Wafers are up 150 percent,” Candystore.com reported in a blog post. “A clear signal of panic-buying.” Katie Samuels, 23, of Florida tried to strike a deal with Candystore.com, a wholesaler. “I offered to trade my 2003 Honda Accord for all of their stock,” Samuels told the Boston Globe. “I don’t have much right now, so I was like, ‘I’ve got this car, and I want all that candy,’ so maybe they would consider it.” Candystore didn’t accept her offer, but Samuels did buy 48 rolls of candy using her credit card.
A Slight Miscalculation
Officials in the city of Vordingborg, Denmark, planned the demolition of a 174-foot-tall silo months ahead of the event. As onlookers cheered the explosion on April 6, the tower toppled in the wrong direction, landing on a waterfront library and music school. No injuries were reported, and the library interior, while covered with dust, sustained no serious damage.
On March 17, police officers called to a McDonald’s restaurant in Okeechobee, Fla., found Derril James Geller, of West Palm Beach, had passed out in his car while waiting in line. Geller was arrested for driving on a suspended license — a crime for which he had been charged three previous times. Also, The Okeechobee News reported that in January, an Okeechobee woman was charged with DUI after passing out at a different area McDonald’s drive-thru. Finally, in December, a Texas man also received a DUI for nodding off in the line at that same McDonald’s.
My Son Went To Heaven?
In Ohio, in 2004, 6-year-old Alex Malarkey spent two months in a coma after a car accident, awaking as a quadriplegic and telling his family he had visited heaven, seen angels and met Jesus. Alex and his dad, Kevin Malarkey, co-wrote a best-selling book in 2010 — The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven. But in 2015, Alex admitted he had made up the story to get attention. “I did not die. I did not go to heaven,” Alex told The Guardian. In a recent effort to set the record straight, Alex filed a complaint on April 9 in DuPage County, Ill., against the book’s publisher, Tyndale House, alleging that “any reasonable person would have realized that it was highly unlikely that the content of the book was true.” The Washington Post reported that while Kevin Malarkey is not a party to the suit, it does allege Alex’s dad concocted and sold the story to Tyndale. The younger Malarkey did not receive any royalties.
Workers renovating the old Dayton’s department store in downtown Minneapolis came across an unusual find: the mummified remains of a monkey. The store apparently had a pet department in the 1960s. Steven Laboe, who worked in the building in the early 2000s, heard stories of a monkey escaping into an air conditioning duct, where it may have met its fate in the form of an exhaust fan. In fact, the mummy does show an injury to the abdomen.
Hitting On The Easter Bunny
Richland Carrousel Park in Mansfield, Ohio, a family-oriented destination, wanted to provide a seasonal attraction for kids who wanted to pose for a picture with the Easter Bunny. But Ladonna Hughett, 54, had other things in mind when she plopped into the bunny’s lap, grabbed him in inappropriate ways and made lewd comments. She then moved on to ride a horse on the carousel, also in ways witnesses described as lewd. “As soon as you think you hear it all …” said Mansfield Assistant Police Chief Keith Porch, “I’ve never heard of somebody performing those types of acts on the Easter Bunny.” Hughett was arrested for public drunkenness and is no longer welcome at the amusement park.
They Said It
“I think we’re all smart people in here … for the most part.”
— State Rep. Thomas Carmody, R-Shreveport, speaking to the Louisiana House of Representatives
“Hey, you know what you never forget? You never forget your seventh special session of the term.”
— Carmody, shortly after the governor announced he would be calling legislators back to Baton Rouge