NOTW: Pee-back time, reptile rescues and $3 billion ‘small businesses’

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WITNESS PROTECTION Even dangerous felons sometimes serve short sentences, but Benito Vasquez-Hernandez, 58–guilty of nothing–has been locked up for nearly 900 days (as of early March) as a “material witness” in a Washington County, Oregon, murder case. The prosecutor is convinced that Vasquez-Hernandez saw his own son, Eloy, murder a woman in 2012, and the […]

NOTW: Zombie apocalypse research, fashionable video games and good cops who go bad

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NEWS YOU CAN USE Researchers from Cornell University, inspired by the book World War Z, recently computer-simulated the spread of a “zombie apocalypse”–and now advise the anxiety-prone to head for higher ground if infections break out, recommending Glacier National Park in Montana or, even better, Alaska. Using differential equations and “lattice-based” models, the statisticians demonstrated […]

NOTW: Legal upskirt photos, owl chasers and America’s least interesting couple

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FINE POINTS OF THE LAW Shooting “upskirt” photos of a 13-year-old girl is not illegal in Oregon, declared Judge Eric Butterfield in February, thus acquitting Patrick Buono, 61, of the crimes of invasion of privacy and “encouraging child sexual abuse.” Buono’s behavior was “appalling,” Judge Butterfield noted, but since the girl was in a public […]

NOTW: Suing yourself, atomic toys and KKK baseball

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  NEWEST RIGHT The Utah Court of Appeals ruled in February that Barbara Bagley has a legal right to sue herself for her own negligent driving that caused the death of her husband. Typically, in U.S. courts, a party cannot profit from its own negligence, but Bagley is the official “representative” administering her husband’s estate […]

NOTW: Unhoneymoons, spider sex and the worst cockroach infestation ever

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THE UNHONEYMOON A Saratoga Springs, New York, resort has begun accepting totally defeated husbands and wives for a relaxed weekend that includes divorce, bringing to America a concept already successful in six European cities. The Gideon Putnam Resort & Spa charges $5,000 for a couple to check in on a Friday, married, but leave Sunday […]

Quizunderstood: How well do you know Hawaii’s pending bills?

1. There’s a new Maui Police Officer doing parking enforcement in Wailuku Town. What is the officer’s name? A. Nick Krau B. Peter Delima C. David Wikoli D. John D. Jakubczak E. Keith Taguma 2. On Feb. 22, The Maui News reported that though agricultural export shipments from Hawaii ports rose 5.2 percent in 2014, […]

NOTW: Bad hospital mortality rates, wild elephants and the ‘Kentucky Hammer’

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  WEIRD NEWS YOU CAN USE It turns out that a person having a heart attack is usually safer to be in an ambulance headed to a hospital than to already be a patient in a hospital, according to a study by University of North Carolina researchers. It takes longer, on average, for non-ER hospital […]

NOTW: Bad traffic, stupid kidnappers and the ‘new’ Klan

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GOOD OL’ BOY A miles-long traffic jam on Interstate 20 near Tuscaloosa, Alabama, on Jan. 25 and on into the next morning was caused by an 18-wheeler that jackknifed and overturned when the 57-year-old driver took his hands off the wheel to pull out a tooth with his fingers. Efforts to haul the truck from […]

NOTW: Restroom apps, Indian bureaucrats & wrongful non-arrests

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BIG-TENT MENTALITY The Project Theater Board at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts, decided in January to cancel its upcoming annual presentation of the feminist classic Vagina Monologues. The all-women’s college recently declared it would admit males who lived and “identified” as female (regardless of genitalia), and the basis for cancellation of the Vagina […]

Jihadist toddlers, octopus exhibits and the life and times of Hugh Jass

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NAME GAMES Fourteen employees of a Framingham, Massachusetts, pharmacy were indicted in December for defrauding the federal government by filling bogus prescriptions (despite an owner’s explicit instructions to staff that the fake customers’ names “must resemble real names,” with “no obviously false names” that might tip off law enforcement). Among the names later found on […]