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News Quirks 

Curses, Foiled Again

Boston police reported that a man walked into a bank and handed a teller a note that read, “Give me all your money.” The teller refused, informing the would-be robber the window was closed. He moved over to the next teller, where a customer scolded him for cutting in front of the line. When the second teller and a customer in line told the man he’d have to take off his sweatshirt hood, the suspect refused and left empty handed. (Boston Globe)

Police concluded that Darin E. Moore, 49, smashed a window with his hand so he could break into a ground-floor apartment in Columbus, Ohio, but the broken glass severed an artery in his arm, and he bled to death. (Columbus Dispatch)

Second-Amendment Follies

Alfonsia O’Bryant, 85, was trying to remove an opossum that had gotten into a chicken pen in Augusta, Ga., when his friend fired a .32-caliber pistol at the animal. Richmond County sheriff’s officials said the bullet missed the possum but wounded O’Bryant in the face. (Augusta Chronicle)

Police in Louisville, Ky., reported that John Berthiaume, 53, seriously injured his right arm, buttock and leg when his homemade potato gun exploded. Tony Berthiaume said his brother apparently put too much black powder into the gun. (Louisville’s WLKY-TV)

John Champion, 21, was hunting alone from his ATV in Levy County, Fla., when he shot himself in the foot with a crossbow. Florida Fish and Wildlife investigators said Champion, who is a paraplegic, was cocking his crossbow when he accidentally fired the bolt through his left foot, pinning it to the ATV’s floor. Unable to free himself, he tried to drive out but became stuck on some brush. Other hunters and family members eventually found him and took him to the hospital for treatment. (Tampa Bay’s WTSP-TV)

Fatastic News

Plastic surgeon Jeffrey Hartog announced the opening of a fat bank in Seminole County, Fla., where patients who’ve had fat removed during liposuction can store it for future cosmetic use, such as plumping up body parts affected by aging. The service spares the patient having to undergo liposuction, which requires anesthesia, a second or third time to obtain the fat. “Fat banking takes [liposuction] to a whole new level,” Hartog said. “We put the patient to sleep once. Do the lipo. Get the fat out once and have as much as we need for later injections.” He explained the fat is drained, cleaned, put in containers for freezing by a “patented process” and stored at his Liquid Gold center, located next to his cosmetic-surgery clinic. The cost to store 250 to 300 cubic centimeters of fat — enough to fill a coffee cup — is $900 for the first year and $200 a year after that. (Orlando Sentinel)

Janet Hardt, 63, died after injecting heated beef fat into her face around her mouth and chin. She’d gone to the hospital complaining that her face felt like it was burning. Authorities in Cook County, Ill., said that, judging from infections in her mouth and lip and scarring from the injections, she apparently had performed the procedure several times, trying to reduce wrinkling. Although Hardt’s face reportedly looked “grotesque,” it had few wrinkles. Neither the injections nor the infections caused her death, however; an autopsy determined she died of peritonitis, a severe abdominal infection. (Chicago Sun-Times)

Friends Indeed

After Cumberland County, Pa., District Judge Thomas A. Placey ordered a continuance for Barry Horn Jr., who’s accused in a standoff with police, several court observers Googled Placey’s Facebook page and learned he’s a Facebook friend with the defendant. Placey said he knew Horn’s father, a former county sheriff’s deputy, but has never socialized with the defendant. He insisted the two aren’t real friends, only Facebook friends, adding that he accepts every friend request he gets. “Someone says you want to be my friend, I say yes,” Placey said. “You could be a Facebook friend of mine, I wouldn’t know it.” (Harrisburg’s Patriot-News)

Police in Greeley, Colo., accused Juan Gonzales Jr., 22, of breaking into a woman’s home and stealing her cellphone. After using the phone signal to trace the phone to Gonzales, investigators found that the suspect had sent the victim a friend request on Facebook. (Greeley’s Tribune)

Fox in the Henhouse

A $750 million-a-year Illinois program subsidizing childcare for 150,000 poor families hired convicted rapists, child molesters and other violent felons as babysitters. A prime example is Cornelius Osborne, who was convicted of raping two women and other assorted felonies, from robbery to failing to register as a sex offender, and repeatedly sent to prison before the state’s Child Care Assistance Program hired him to babysit two children. For more than two years, Osborne was paid nearly $5000 before his latest conviction, for dealing drugs, returned him to prison. (Chicago Tribune)

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Roland Sweet

Roland Sweet is the author of the syndicated column "News Quirks," which appears weekly in Seven Days.


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