TWA - Traveling With Animals St Louis, Missouri - Charles Gramc, a security guard at the federal courthouse, said that TWA officials have yet to come through on what he said was an offer to pick up his medical bills from treating a mouse bite wound. The incident occurred on a TWA flight. Gramc said the mouse bit him on his right hand while the airplane was parked at the terminal in Cincinnati. Gramc said he was startled by the bite. He looked down to see the mouse dash across his lap and down a wall, he said. TWA spokesman Jim Brown said the airline paid $334 for Gramc's medical treatment. Brown said no one else on the plane reported seeing a mouse. "We went through a very, very thorough search of the plane. "We talked to the crew. We talked to the passengers. No one indicated there was any evidence of any animal on board."Gramc is suing TWA for $100,000.
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Taxi-mad New York City - Mohammad Rahman, 36, Brooklyn, racked up three accidents on his second day on a new job as a new cab driver. It all started at 9 a.m. when, cops say, he rammed into a parked car. Rahman said the car rammed into his cab, he even called police to report the accident. An hour later, Rahman said he paused for a light. He got nervous, though, when the light changed and that cars started to honk while he waited for pedestrians to clear the crosswalk. "I got confused, and my feet just slipped from the brake to the accelerator," Rhaman said. That's when he struck a 22-year-old man from New Jersey. When police showed up and began converging on his cab, Rahman ran into another car. Cops said he was leaving the scene, but he said he was only trying to park his taxi so it wouldn't block traffic. Rahman is looking for another line of work.
Slipped one past the goalie Norwalk, Connecticut - The Caldor department store chain apologized this week after 11 million copies of an advertising circular showed two smiling boys playing Scrabble around a board with the word "RAPE" spelled out. Caldor said it does not know who did it or how it got past the proofreaders.
They'll never suspect it Indianapolis, Indiana - Two alleged drug dealers were captured while staying at the home of the sheriff, whose housekeeper had invited them over while her employer was away on vacation, investigators say. The housekeeper, Dana Dickie, 41, was immediately fired and could face charges.
Fat burglar? West Hartford, Connecticut - Clark Dounouk is accused of breaking into a gourmet food store as many as 35 times over the last two months and feasting on lobster, champagne, shrimp, and well-aged wine. Police said Dounouk entered the upscale Ann Howard Cookery through an unlocked door which had been broken and replaced with a temporary door that had no lock.
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Sign of the crimes
Members of a citizens anticrime group in Linesville, PA., have a new mystery to solve: Who stole their crime watch signs? Five signs and poles were removed from roadsides around Linesville in Crawford County. "We don't know if it was somebody trying to get even," said Ed Barker, chairman of the North Shenango Township Crime Watch chapter. "We don't think it was kids, because the signs were gone, post and all."
You're under abreast
Michael Copp, 18, Sheffield Lake, Ohio, was charged with stealing his mother's credit card to pay for his 18-year-old girlfriend's breast enlargement surgery. According to a police report, Copp's mother, Gaelene Pakrandt, told officers she had closed the account because her son charged $2,100 in car repair bills. Police said Copp reopened the account without his mother's knowledge after he found the card in a drawer. He charged $2,496 to the card to cover the surgery. Most items purchased with a stolen credit card are confiscated and returned by police. But this case is a little different.
Death race 2000
PHILADELPHIA, PA - Tamika Ross, 26, is being held for trial on charges of the murder of Nathaniel Davis. Apparently Ross ran over Davis' hat with her car. When Davis confronted the driver a dispute erupted and Davis allegedly hit Ross.
That's when the mother of five took matters into her own hands and ran him over with her car, killing him. When questioned, police quoted Ross as saying, "He hit me so I ran him down."
Dead man gets 2 years
A man was sentenced last week to two years in prison for faking his death three times to beat drunk driving charges. Peter C. Gentry was first arrested in 1991, but an official looking death certificate sent to authorities said he had died in a Los Angeles auto crash, and the case was dismissed. In 1994, he was arrested again and sent in another death certificate. A year later, Gentry was again arrested and supposedly died this time of "denzor hemorrhagic fever" in Africa. There is no such disease.
Soul-mate! not cellmate!
Karim Lackey, Philadelphia, PA was acquitted last week of fatally shooting Phillip Shirdan, 42, after his lawyer claimed that Lackey had been the victim of "mistaken identity." Two of Lackey's alibi witnesses claimed they were with him watching the "Soul Train Music Awards" on TV at the time Shirdan was killed in a lounge. Lackey got off free despite the fact that the "Soul Train Awards" were not aired on TV that night.
Driving Miss Crazy
Paris - After France's 3-0 victory over Brazil in the World Cup championship game, the whole city erupted in joy. So much that they scared the bejesus of a woman driving her car near the crowd. She panicked and plowed into a group of fans, injuring about 60 people, some seriously. "Apparently it was a crazy car, which drove for several dozen meters, knocking people over on its way," said Cmdr. Phillipe Lavoil, a rescue official. Witnesses said the woman cut down revelers over a 50-yard swath, and then dragged some of them for several yards. When the car finally stopped, the driver was attacked by the crowd before police intervened.
Brooklyn, NY - In an effort to crack down on the sale of cigarettes to minors. the city has hired about 100 teens to visit some 15,000 stores, licensed to sell tobacco, to check whether salespeople ask for ID. Last week Bernard Weinstein, a vendor at Board of Education headquarters was busted. City officials chuckled with delight when they caught him - until they learned the old guy is virtually blind. "He didn't look like no kid to me," Weinstein said.
Inspectors withdrew the violation against the vision-impaired vendor.
In Albany, GA, a 17-year-old boy armed with a .38 pistol approached car dealer Oran McGlamry, 74, and demanded his wallet, announcing, "Old man, I've got you now." Recognizing the youth as the same person who robbed him the day before, McGlamry grabbed his weed trimmer and rushed towards the robber. The surprised teen tried to run but fell, where-upon McGlamry gave the trimmer full throttle and began whacking him in the buttocks. "I was just trying to do what any other man would have done to protect his business, his wife and his life," McGlamry said.
Robert Townes, a.k.a. - Hollywood, received 11 years, 4 months in prison for selling about 55 semiautomatic rifles from the trunk of his car on the streets of North Philadelphia. It took the jury only an hour to reject Towne's defense. Townes claimed that two drug dealers kidnapped his 2-year-old son and held the boy for 20 months while forcing him to supply them and their associates with firepower.
Lawn of the dead
Sarver, PA - A man fatally shot his neighbor after the neighbor, who was angry over a damaged lawnmower, came into his house and wounded his wife with a shotgun, state police said. Jack Bouch was questioned in the killing of Robert George McCrea, 50.
Matlock made me do it!
Jan Steffen, 33, a hair stylist in Anoka, Minn., got five years in prison for trying to hire a hit man to kill her husband after she allegedly botched two attempts of her own. During one of the attempts, Steffen used an exotic method of asphyxiation she saw on TV's "Matlock."
Disorder in the court
West Virginia Judge Joseph Trosi is accused of biting the nose of defendant Bill Witten, 29, at a bond-reduction hearing in June after Witten reportedly made a derogatory remark against the judge. "Mr. Trosi stepped down from the bench, removed his robe, and there was a confrontation at that point," said State Police Capt. Terry Snodgrass. "During the confrontation, Mr. Witten's nose was injured."
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Not so lucky after all
Ricardo Aldape Guerra, 35, who spent 15 years on death row in a Texas jail, several times coming within hours of being executed, was released in April after a judge ruled that six prosecution witnesses lacked credibility. He returned to Mexico as a folk hero and was signed to appear in a popular Mexican soap opera. Four months later, he was killed in a high-speed auto accident near the northern Mexican city of Matehuala. His mother, Francisca Guerra Aldape, told Notimex news agency that among her son's last words were: "They have paid me for the soap opera, tomorrow I will be there."
Finger lickin' good?
A hotel soup-and-sauce cook angered by a co-worker's tardiness bit off part of the man's finger, police said. The San Fransisco Hilton cook, Jose Grimal, 46, was in jail charged with mayhem. Grimal got mad when when he could not get into a storage closet because the victim, Fekadu Woldeabzgi, 32, was late to work and the door was locked. When Woldeabzgi arrived, the two men argued. The victim was shaking his finger about a foot away from Grimal's face when the cook allegedly reached out and "just grabbed it and bit my finger off," Woldeabzgi said. Grimal said the victim's finger accidentally entered his mouth.
After Frankie and Carolyn Ash stopped at a convenience store near their home in Northport, AK, Frankie was leaving the store when the couple's 21-year-old son David rushed in past him. The father thought the son was hurrying to go to the bathroom, but then the mother looked in and saw him brandishing a knife behind the counter. Next, he ran out, got into his truck and drove off. The couple waited for police to arrive and told them what had happened. Sgt. Kevin Leib said it was uncertain whether the man realized his parents were at the store, explaining, "He was apparently so concentrated on what he was doing that he didn't notice them." Meanwhile, David Ash's getaway car broke down. He called his parents for help, but they told him what they had seen and urged him to surrender to police.
When Edmond James Ramos was charged with first-degree burglary in Los Angeles for breaking into an occupied dwelling, his lawyer appealed. He argued that because the only occupant had died of natural causes mere minutes before Ramos broke in, legally the residence was unoccupied. An appeals court agreed and threw out the charge.
Police in Fort Collins, CO, charged Steven E. Peterson, 32, with robbing the same 7-Eleven twice in one day, telling the clerk after the second holdup that he would be back in a few hours to rob the place a third time. True to his word, he returned and was arrested by detectives still in the store investigating the second robbery.
Three men tried to hold up a convenience store in Starkville, MS, but when one of them pulled the trigger of his .22 caliber handgun, nothing happened. Flustered, they fled the store, and the clerk opened fire on them. They made it to their getaway car but didn't get far before the engine blew up and they got into an accident. "Not to make light of a serious situation," police Capt. David Lindley said, "but this was the Apple Dumpling Gang. They couldn't get anything right."
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Not as thunk as you drink
BELFAST - A forgetful alcoholic turned himself in to the police after spotting himself on a security video in the midst of a robbery, Belfast Crown Court was told Wednesday. William Nixon, 36, saw himself on a television crime program wielding a fake gun as he robbed a filling station in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland. Nixon, who had spent his entire welfare benefit check on drink before the raid, staggered out of the garage with his booty of 250 pounds ($404) and wished the stunned assistants "all the best."
An offer he'd like to refuse
An accused Mafioso pleaded with Italian prison authorities for mercy: "We've had enough of mortadella, we can't take it anymore," Giuseppe Calascibetta, 46, shouted from behind bars in a high-security prison courtroom where he and others are on trial for the 1992 murder of anti-mob Judge Paolo Borsellino. "Ever since I got here the menu's been the same-- a sandwich with a very thin slice of mortadella and in the evening, when we get back to our cells, they give us a potato. The lucky ones get a little slice of ham."