Thursday, April 28, 2016

A place to rest your weary head

Rescued baby slow loris learns to climb a tree

Pasar the Javan slow loris was snatched from the cool shade of the Indonesian rainforest when only weeks old, stuffed into a small dark box filled with other terrified lorises and transported into the noise, heat and blinding sunlight of an animal market in Jakarta.

Before he was put up for sale Pasar’s tiny canine teeth were filed down by the dealer in the market to make the little creature defenceless. After police raided the market he was taken to the International Animal Rescue centre in Ciapus. Pasar is now starting to gain strength and is showing good early signs of making a recovery. It is hoped that Pasar will make a full recovery and will one day be independent enough to return to the wild, but he has a long road ahead of him.

YouTube link.

Postal worker accused of delivering mail while drunk

Police in Minnetonka, Minnesota, have credited an alert motorist for putting them onto a suspected drunk driver last Friday who was delivering mail. It was a tip from another motorist that aroused suspicion of the possible drunk driver. “It was a US Postal Service vehicle,” said Minnetonka Police Chief Jeff Sebenaler.

“This was a person out delivering mail.” The chief identified the driver as 59-year-old Mary Elizabeth Sweet, a two-year post office employee. She was on her mail route in Minnetonka shortly before 11:30am when the alert tipster saw her nearly clip another car. The driver kept following Sweet and dialed 911 to report her erratic driving.

“They actually watched the vehicle strike a stop sign and then police arrived shortly after,” Sebenaler said. The chief said that Sweet was arrested when her mail delivery truck was stopped. She was charged with a third-degree gross misdemeanor for failure to consent and a fourth-degree misdemeanor for driving under the influence. A preliminary breath test registered a 0.297 reading - more than three times the legal blood alcohol limit.

YouTube link.

She was arrested and her mail delivery completed by other employees, a US Postal Service spokesperson said. Sebenaler says that daytime impaired driving arrests are increasing. That’s why he’s thankful that an alert motorist called in the unexpected vehicle. Sweet was released from custody on Monday. A postal service spokesman says that Sweet has been placed on non-duty status, meaning she’ll be off the route pending the outcome of the investigation.

Naked man allegedly caught pleasuring himself in truck while broadcasting live on the internet

A 26-year-old man from Nampa, Idaho, is accused of pleasuring himself while parked in a truck and broadcasting the acts over the internet in the nude.

Earlier this month, Boise Police received an anonymous tip about lewd conduct occurring at the Boise Town Square Mall. Officers investigated the call, and were able to identify the suspect and determine that he would be back in the area.

Police tracked down the suspect in a Nampa parking lot and say he was "completely nude, involved in sexually explicit acts with himself" and was "broadcasting live over the internet." Police arrested the man, identified as Daniel J. Mena, and charged him with disorderly conduct.

"The idea that these types of acts were going on in a public place, open to the view of any passer-by's is something we take very seriously. The possibility that our residents, including children, might have been exposed to this lewd behavior is disturbing," said Sergeant Tim Riha of Nampa Police Department. Mena is being held in the Canyon County Jail.

Woman who fell through ceiling of store recalls being in ceiling but not how she got up there

Police say a woman was arrested last week after she broke into a Big Lots store in Springfield, Missouri, climbed into the ceiling and then came crashing down to the floor.

Amanda L. Chandler, 30, was charged on Thursday with second-degree burglary after police say they found her rummaging through the cash register at Big Lots in the middle of the night. According to a probable cause statement, police were dispatched to the store just after 2am on Thursday because the alarm was going off.

The responding officer noticed a window was broken out near the entrance of the business. The officer saw a woman, later identified as Chandler, standing toward the front of the business looking through a cash register. The officer shone a flashlight at Chandler, and she ducked down and then ran to the back of the business.

Once she reached the back of the business Chandler climbed into the ceiling in a back storage area. Chandler then fell through the ceiling in the women's restroom. The officer arrested Chandler after the fall and transported her to the Greene County Jail. While at the jail, Chandler allegedly told a detective with the Springfield Police Department she remembered being in the ceiling but she did not remember how she got there. Chandler is being held in the Greene County Jail on $15,000 bond.

Man ordered to remove zombie statue from his yard

A man from south Nashville, Tennessee, says that his homeowners association is ordering him to remove a statue of a zombie from his front yard. Jim Grinstead has lived in his home near Percy Priest Lake for nearly 10 years and says the zombie he and his wife call “Clawed” has been in his yard for five of those years.

He was surprised when he recently received a letter from the homeowners association ordering him to get rid of the statue. The first sentence of the letter says: “During a recent inspection of the community on April 19, 2016, it was noted that there is a zombie in your yard that needs to be removed.”

Grinstead says his family has a specific sense of humour that makes Clawed a perfect fit for their home. "I don't own guns, but I have a zombie, so it's my personal choice of defence system." Grinstead joked. The letter caught Grinstead off-guard because no neighbours had ever complained about Clawed, and Grinstead believes this is a homeowners association going overboard.

YouTube link.

"I don't have the freedom to pick what I want in my yard because somebody wants to read the rules so strictly that it can't allow for individuality? That's a shame." Grinstead said. As of Tuesday afternoon, Clawed remained in the front yard, but Grinstead knows he'll have to claw his way somewhere else. "To know that he's gonna have to go is like losing a family member, you know? It's disturbing." Grinstead said, adding that he had decided to move Clawed by the end of the week to avoid retribution from the homeowners association.

Man bitten on penis by deadly redback spider while using portable toilet

An Australian man has taken himself to hospital after a venomous redback spider bit him on the penis.

The tradesman was using a portable toilet on a Sydney building site on Wednesday morning when he was bitten. A spokesperson for St George Hospital confirmed that a 21-year-old man was treated for a redback bite.

The redback spider, closely related to the black widow spider, is distinguished by a long red stripe on its abdomen. The spider's bite causes severe pain, sweating and nausea.

The owners of the property confirmed that the man had been bitten on the penis. He was later discharged from hospital in a stable condition. Although there are recorded cases of deaths from redback bites, none have occurred since the development of antivenom in 1956.

Petition launched against mayhem-causing mating peacocks

Up to 30 mating peacocks and hens have ruined the peace of a village with all-night noise and attacks on cars, residents have claimed. The birds are roaming loose in Ushaw Moor, County Durham and "causing mayhem" by fouling the streets and scratching vehicles with their claws and beaks, they say. Durham County Council said it was investigating complaints about noise.

A petition demanding action says they have caused problems for six years. Organiser Graham Bridge said the birds screech throughout the day and cause disturbance during the night as they sit on roofs and call out to each other. The peacocks also scratch and peck cars, convinced their reflection in the paintwork is a rival bird. Mr Bridge said a resident's car was attacked so violently the peacock left blood on the vehicle.

A further nuisance is the muck the roaming birds leave, he added. "It is evil stuff," Mr Bridge said. "When it's soft it is flipping awkward to get out of anything. The best method is to let it dry, but you wouldn't want to do that." There is some dispute over the exact number of birds and where they have come from. Mr Bridge estimates there are 30 of them and said a neighbour once found 13 sitting on his decking.

Durham County Council said it had received complaints about noise and was investigating to determine whether the birds create a statutory noise nuisance under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. Chris Collett from the RSPB said the birds "fall into a grey area as far as the law is concerned". "This is a difficult one because peacocks are not classed as wild birds which have protection in law," Mr Collett said. "They are classed as domestic birds, but clearly the ones in question are feral and have no owner."

Lamb born with no wool given a fluffy fleece

A lamb born without its own wool coat is being kept warm in a borrowed fluffy fleece. The lamb, nicknamed Skippy because "he looks like a kangaroo", was born on a farm at Chilton Foliat in Wiltshire.

Described as a "freak of nature" by farm hand Sally-Ann Fisher, Skippy was "completely abandoned" by his mother and is now being hand-reared. Ms Fisher said: "We've made a little jacket for him to wear out of an old jumper to keep him warm at night."

Ms Fisher, who farms with her partner near Ramsbury, said the lamb had been born 10 days ago but they were "not aware" that its lack of wool was a condition or a "health problem". "He's just unlucky, but he's doing great," she said.

Hannah Park, from the National Sheep Association, said the condition was "not common". "Some breeds with less wool might be susceptible but it is extremely unusual and not something we would see," she said.

Volunteer litter-picker told he can't dump picked-up rubbish at local tip without a licence

A litter-picking volunteer was turned away from the tip after being told he could only dispose of his own rubbish. Colin Shadbolt, 51, was turned away from the dump in Faversham, Kent, after spending several hours collecting bags of litter from beside the road. Mr Shadbolt was told: “You can’t take rubbish to the rubbish tip” by the tip workers. He said: “Over the past two weeks I have been picking up the litter as I walked along.

“It is all rubbish which has been there for years and will be there for years to come as nobody does anything about it. I went to the tip with a couple of bags of rubbish and they said I could not bring that in there, it goes against their rules. When I was at the tip, there were a few people standing about and they were flabbergasted, too." After writing to the Kent County Council about his nightmare experience, they confirmed that his volunteering was indeed for nothing as the tip workers were right and he needed to be a licensed waste collector.

Mr Shadbolt has spent hours picking up after others over the past few months but he may now think again before he reaches for the litter-picker. He said: “I was shocked. The council should be encouraging people to bring litter in and making it easy for them to make the place look nicer.” KCC spokesman Thom Morris confirmed the Faversham Household Waste Recycling Centre is for the use of members of the public to dispose of items “which originate from their own property” and would encourage litter-pickers to contact their district council in advance to arrange a collection.

He said: “Litter waste has no specific origin and by default could be hazardous. While we applaud the initiative, litter being picked up is not from a personal property and therefore you would need to be a registered waste carrier and this waste would need to be disposed of at a transfer station. Litter is a high priority in Kent, but we need to follow processes to ensure that waste is disposed of in the most appropriate way.”

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Anteater goes to great lengths to reach leaves

This Southern Tamandua at Sunshine Aquarium in Tokyo, Japan, really wants the vegetable leaves that have been put out for the ducks.

But can it get to them without getting wet?

YouTube link.

Woman surprised to find that her dead mother's bank account was overdrawn by $99 billion

The daughter of a woman from Chicago Heights, Illinois, who passed away last month received an interesting message from Chase Bank recently. “Your checking account has a negative balance of $99,999,999,545.90”

Sheila Henderson was listed on her deceased mother’s account and had called the bank to check the balance in order to pay off some funeral expenses. She was shocked when she heard the astonishing number.

When Henderson heard the mind-boggling number last Wednesday, she said she almost had a heart attack. "I was shocked. I couldn't even speak. I called it again," Henderson said. "I called my brother to listen to it and the first thing he said, 'You have been hiding all this money from me. Why did you do this?'

"I was like, 'No, it says it is a negative amount on it," Henderson said. Chase Bank say that they're investigating and they will work with her to fix the issue. Henderson calls it a $99 billion mistake. "I think I might stick with Chase. I do like them. People make mistakes. But it's a scary mistake for me though," Henderson said.

With news video.

Police seek owner of mystery box

Police in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire are trying to solve the mystery of a box that was found on the side of the road in Bristol. They want to know where this box came from and who it belongs to. The wooden box has a gold-coloured metallic overlay.

“It's fairly large, has a lot of emblems on it. It looks ancient, but I don't believe it’s that old,” said Officer Nicholas Kelley. Police received a phone call from a concerned passer-by who spotted it about two weeks ago, not knowing whether it was trash or treasure. Police said the box measures nearly two feet wide and features what looks like a family dining together on the front.

The box was basically empty, except for a red bow, some lint and a “Made in England” sticker that police said could have transferred from another item. “I have no idea. It’s probably just some family heirloom that was probably taken from someone's home,” said Kelley. Police say the mystery box could be part of a crime, stolen from a seasonal home, emptied and then dumped.

YouTube link.

“We believe it may have been burglarized from a home, and the people haven't come up yet and hopefully people will see it and know it’s theirs,” said Kelley. Kelley said the box could be special to someone, especially if it was passed down. Bristol police are seeking the rightful owner to solve the case.

Cat rescued from roof using a cardboard box as an improvised slide

A cat was rescued from the roof of a two-storey house in Cardiff, Wales, thanks to a piece of cardboard used as an improvised slide. Farah Mukhtar, a PhD student at Cardiff University, said she heard the cat miaowing outside on Sunday evening but could see nothing when she went to her front door.

The 29-year-old, who is originally from Malaysia, said she could still hear the cat, whose owner lives a few doors down, on Monday morning before she realised it was on the roof of the Riverside home she shares with her husband Syafiq Basar and three-year-old son. “I never thought it would be on the roof,” she said.

“My husband tried to call the cat to the other side of the house so it would be easier to catch it, but it didn’t want to. A ladder was too short so we couldn’t use that. There was a contractor working nearby who tried to call it but it didn’t want to move.” The couple got in touch with the fire brigade but were told they would only get involved if contacted by the RSPCA.

Farah said: “We tried to make him jump but it didn’t want to. So eventually my husband used the cardboard box and got it to slide down into the house.” Syafiq then grabbed hold of the cat from the window although there was still a hairy moment when it appeared reluctant to be rescued. But after consolidating his grip on the moggy, Syafig ensured the cat could be reunited with its owner.

With video of the rescue.

Homesick sheepdog made 240-mile solo journey to return to his former home

A sheepdog originally from a farm in Ceredigion, mid Wales, appears to have made the 240-mile solo journey back to its birthplace from its new home in Cumbria, north England. Pero, a four-year-old working sheepdog, escaped from Cockermouth on 8 April only to reappear on the doorstep of Alan and Shan James's farm near Aberystwyth a fortnight later. His previous owners have no idea how he found his way back.

They now plan to keep Pero. Mrs James said: "The farmer in Cockermouth was looking for a dog that could round sheep and follow a quad bike, and we thought Pero would be ideal for the job. We told the farmer to take him away and see if he'd be willing to work for him on his farm up north. And so Pero left us at the beginning of March." But it seems Pero would not settle in his new home, and while out working on the farm, he bolted across the fields.

"We'd been told that Pero had disappeared, and was nowhere to be seen " said Mrs James, who lives with their five children on the sheep farm in Penrhyncoch. "But then, last Wednesday evening, my husband Alan went out to check on the animals after supper and there was Pero on our doorstep. It was a bit of a shock, and the dog was going crazy after seeing Alan. No-one called us to say that they'd dropped the dog off, and even though he has a microchip no-one's been in touch either to say that they've found him.

"It's a total mystery as to how Pero has managed to find his way back to us. We know that dogs can find their way home, but 240 miles is a long way to travel." Now the family wish to find out if anybody has had an unfamiliar black and white sheepdog calling around looking for food at any time over the past two weeks. "When he came back, he wasn't hungry or weak, so he must have managed to find food somewhere. He must have stopped in places along the way," she said.

There's a news video here.

John Thomas in trouble over penis pictures

A man named John Thomas has admitted sending two pictures of his erect penis to a 15-year-old schoolgirl’s Facebook account. Unemployed Thomas, 45, of Bancyrhyd, Gwaun Valley, wales, appeared before Haverfordwest Magistrates Court on Monday and admitted sending indecent images. His victim, who cannot be named, encountered Thomas at a male friend’s house on a couple of occasions. Thomas was dating the boy’s mother after contacting her through “the UK’s favourite naughty dating website”, the court was told.

“The victim says she spoke briefly with the defendant, who told her he had a daughter of a similar age to her,” said prosecutor Ellie Morgan. “He said she reminded him of his daughter.” Ms Morgan explained that a few weeks later the girl was on Facebook when Thomas came up as a “suggested friend”. “She sent him a friend request, and he accepted,” Ms Morgan said. “He then liked a few of her photos, and she saw he had sent her a private message. There were no words, just two photos of his erect penis. The girl was shocked and disgusted.” The teen’s mother insisted police were informed.

In a victim statement read to the court, the girl said she “couldn’t believe a man who’s a lot older than me and has a daughter my age send me indecent pictures”. The victim said she had been left feeling “anxious” and “embarrassed” by the incident, in April 2015. Defence solicitor Michael Kelleher said Thomas had been drunk when he mistakenly sent the images to the teenager. He said the pictures were meant for the woman he had met online and not the teenager. “Unfortunately, he must have pressed the wrong button,” said Mr Kelleher. “When he woke up in the morning, he couldn’t remember anything about it.

"Then the police arrived at his house. He was fully cooperative and explained what he thought had happened. In interview following his arrest, he said he couldn’t apologise enough to the girl and her family for the upset those images must have caused them. It was a pure accident.” Mr Kelleher said Thomas had “suffered for a year” over his actions and had lost his job as a bus driver as a result of being charged with the offence. “He’s effectively done a 12 month sentence waiting for this day in court,” Mr Kelleher suggested. Magistrates imposed a three year restraining order preventing Thomas from contacting his victim, before fining him £140 and ordering him to pay the girl £200 compensation. He must also settle court costs of £105.

Woman with arm trapped under car seat rescued by firefighters

Fire crews were called to rescue a woman who had trapped her arm.

The crews from Watford, Hertfordshire, responded at 11.23pm on Sunday.

The lady got her arm stuck under her car seat in Estcourt Road, Watford.

According to the Watford Fire Service, the woman was trying to reach her mobile phone and she was treated at the scene.

Kittens 'coloured in' with permanent markers

Two kittens were "coloured in" in what an animal charity described as a "dreadful act of cruelty". The four-week-old kittens, called Smurf and Shrek, are thought to have been inked by permanent marker pens.

They were brought to Bradford Cat Watch Rescue on Monday after being found by West Yorkshire Police at a property in the city. The charity said it was bathing the kittens in the hope the ink could be gradually removed.

Children are not thought to have been responsible. Charity volunteer Katie Jane Lloyd said: "This is a dreadful act of cruelty and who knows what untold damage this may have caused.

"While there is still a lot of ink on them, I have been very lucky to liaise with the veterinary poisons information service, who have offered me much advice to safely and systematically remove it." Police had been responding to an animal welfare issue involving another animal at the property when the kittens were found.

Man says he spotted cat the size of an Alsation on nearby roof

Bill Spencer, of Rhodesia in Worksop, Nottinghamshire thinks there is a wild big cat on the loose. He was sitting with his wife on Saturday and was shocked to see a “big cat the size of an Alsatian” nearby.

The mysterious feline had a “long neck” and was “moving forwards in what can only be described as a stalking manner” on the roof of a barn.

Mr Spencer, who managed to capture the creature on his mobile phone, said: “It’s hard to see just how big it was from the photo, but it was the size of an adult Alsatian (German Shepherd).

“There are a lot of cats in the area, but nothing as big as this. It looked down from the roof for around five minutes, and then slowly went out of sight on the other side of the barn.”