Mad Minute headlines for Thursday, April 2nd - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute headlines for Thursday, April 2nd

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 The Chicago man who created the advertising icon Poppin' Fresh, more widely known as the Pillsbury Doughboy, died on Wednesday at the age of 89.

Rudolph R. Perz created the doughboy during the 1960s while working for the Leo Burnett advertising agency.

He is among the "30-second stars" the Museum of Broadcast Communications plans to honor later this year.


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A Connecticut high school student is facing charges after "catfishing" nearly two dozen people online, many of them teenagers, posing as a young girl in order to convince them to send naked pictures and iTunes gift cards, according to police.

Police said the 16-year-old from Hartford created fake Internet accounts under the name of Casey Morales, a teenage girl claiming to be a junior at Francis High School in Meriden.

The teen told police he lost count somewhere around 20 victims, some of whom were as young as 14 years old. "Casey" asked the boys to send nude pictures on the photo sharing app Snapchat, then took screenshots and threatened to share them online if the victims didn't pay up. He also demanded the victims masturbate for "Casey" on video chat but refused to show his face.

A number of the victims acquiesced and sent the teen iTunes gift cards, some of which he redeemed while at Glastonbury High School, according to police. One of the teen boys sent him two gift cards worth $80 and $50 apiece.

The Glastonbury school resource officer helped identify the teen as a suspect. Police said the teen later admitted to using fake Internet accounts to "catfish" other teenagers. He stored their nude photos on his iPhone but later deleted them because he was afraid his mom would see, according to police.

According to the warrant for the teen's arrest, the case came to light last June when a 15-year-old victim told his mother what had happened and the two went together to West Hartford police.

The teen has been charged with three counts of first-degree larceny by extortion, 16 counts of criminal attempt at first-degree larceny by extortion, five counts of third-degree possession of child pornography, 10 counts of promoting a minor in an obscene performance.

He pleaded not guilty and is due back in court May 21.

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Two of the suspects - Thomas Jordan Driver, 25, and David Elliot Moran, 47 - are officers at the Florida Department of Corrections' Reception and Medical Center in Lake Butler. The third, 42-year-old Charles Townsend Newcomb, is a former officer there, officials said.

All three men are members of the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, according to Attorney General Pam Bondi, who announced the arrests.

Bondi said the men plotted the inmate's murder after he got into a fight with Driver.

Driver, Moran and Newcomb were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit murder.

Florida Corrections Secretary Julie Jones said she was "moving swiftly" to fire Driver and Moran. "The actions of these individuals are unacceptable and do not, in any way, represent the thousands of good, hardworking and honorable correctional officers employed at the Department of Corrections," she said.


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Rapper Vanilla Ice accepted a community service plea deal on Thursday allowing him to avoid prosecution in the break-in and burglary of a Florida home.

The rapper, whose real name is Robert Van Winkle, agreed to 100 hours of community service and to pay more than $1,000 in restitution after appearing in West Palm Beach Circuit Court Thursday morning, according to prosecutors.

Van Winkle, 47, was arrested and charged with grand theft and burglary on Feb. 18 after furniture, a pool heater, bicycles and other items disappeared from a foreclosed South Florida home between last December and the time of his arrest, police said.

Van Winkle had been renovating a neighboring home at the time and said the arrest was "a misunderstanding" and "blown out of proportion" in February after leaving jail, NBC station NBC Miami reported.

The rapper claimed several of the items police recovered from his home were found on a curb and that "he thought they were trash."

Under the plea deal, prosecutors will drop the charges against Van Winkle within 12 months if he completes 100 hours of community service with Habitat for Humanity in Palm Beach County and pays $1,333.39 to the estate of the homeowner.

Van Winkle is best known for his 1990 hit single "Ice Ice Baby," but in 2009 launched a home-renovation reality-TV series on the DIY Network.

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A North Carolina man missing at sea for 66 days was rescued from his disabled sailboat about 200 miles off the state's coast, the U.S. Coast Guard said Thursday.

Louis Jordan, 37, was reported missing by his father on Jan. 29. Jordan had set sail on his 35-foot boat "Angel" on Jan. 23 from Bucksport Marina in South Carolina and had not been in touch with his family for several days, according to the Coast Guard.

Two months later, after an initial unsuccessful search, the Coast Guard said Thursday that Jordan had been found on his disabled boat by a German cargo ship some 200 miles east of Cape Hatteras off North Carolina.

The Coast Guard launched a Jayhawk helicopter crew to transport Jordan from the German ship to Sentara Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia - and said the missing sailor was in good condition.

Louis Jordan spoke to his father, Frank Jordan, for the time in more than two months in an emotional telephone call Thursday.

The Coast Guard said Thursday night a picture of Jordan's time at sea was beginning to emerge. On Jan. 23 he set sail from South Carolina, heading north. Jordan then decided to head offshore to go fishing, when his mast broke and his communication gear was damaged in a rough storm.

Jordan says he survived through a combination of rationing the food he had already packed for the journey, drinking rain water and catching fish with a net.

The helicopter crew landed at the hospital around 7:30 p.m. ET, where Jordan was able to stand up and walk to the hospital without assistance.

The Miami Coast Guard had embarked on a unsuccessful 10-day search in February, after his family reported that Jordan was still missing on Feb. 7.

Jordan had never filed a "float plan" to indicate where he was going and when he would return, the Miami Coast Guard said.

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Baby Eli Thompson was born in Mobile, Alabama in early March with an extremely rare birth defect.

He has no nose, nasal passage or sinus cavity. All of this -- after his ultrasounds came back normal. 

Underneath the tubes, medical tape and heavy breathing. But Brandi Mcglathery is holding on to her little miracle, Eli. After carrying him for 9 months, he's finally home wrapped in her arms.

It was also in her arms in the delivery room when she realized something was wrong.

She says after he was delivered, the doctor put him on her chest, which was when she realized he didn't have a nose. 

Her initial excitement was shattered with their first embrace. Eli was born without a nose, nasal passage or sinus cavities. The disorder so rare there's reportedly only 38 other people in the whole world with cases like this.

Doctors at USA Children's and Women's Hospital were baffled by the baby. His mother's ultrasounds and tests showed there was no sign anything was wrong.

Within hours of his birth, Eli was whisked away to specialists. His daily life includes using a tube to make breathing and feeding easier. and there will be several surgeries in his future. 

Extra care for his new parents and also lots of love. At 6 pounds, 8 ounces, it's hard for them to keep their eyes off their miracle baby, their little bundle of joy. 

Because eli is so small, doctors are not considering cosmetic surgery until at least puberty. 

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A federal judge on Thursday ordered California's corrections department to provide a transgender inmate with sex change surgery, the first time such an operation has been ordered in the state.

U.S. District Court Judge Jon Tigar in San Francisco ruled that denying sex reassignment surgery to 51-year-old Michelle-Lael Norsworthy violates her constitutional rights. Her birth name is Jeffrey Bryan Norsworthy.

The ruling marks just the second time nationwide that a judge has issued an injunction directing a state prison system to provide the surgery, said Ilona Turner, legal director at the Transgender Law Center in Oakland, which helped represent Norsworthy.

The previous order in a Massachusetts case was overturned last year and is being appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In his ruling in California, Tigar said the surgery has actually been performed just once on an inmate, an apparent reference to a person who castrated himself in Texas then was given the surgery out of necessity.

Norsworthy, who was convicted of murder, has lived as a woman since the 1990s and has what Tigar termed severe gender dysphoria -- a condition that occurs when people's gender at birth is contrary to the way they identify themselves.

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation officials said they are considering whether to appeal the ruling.

If the order stands, Norsworthy would be the first inmate to receive such surgery in California, said Joyce Hayhoe, a spokeswoman for the federal receiver who controls California prison medical care.

Hayhoe said it's not known how much the surgery would cost, but it could run as high as $100,000, depending on the circumstances.

Corrections officials, in previous court filings, argued that Norsworthy has received proper medical and mental health care for more than 15 years and is in no immediate medical danger if the surgery is not performed.

Her care included counseling, mental health treatment and hormone therapy that the department said has changed her appearance and voice to that of a woman, while helping her find her gender identity.

That care is consistent with what other judges nationwide have found to be appropriate for transgender inmates, the department said.

Norsworthy has been in prison since 1987, serving a life sentence for second-degree murder. She has twice delayed her scheduled parole hearings in recent months.

She currently is housed at Mule Creek State Prison, an all-male prison in Ione, 40 miles southeast of Sacramento.

The sex change surgery would prompt practical problems, the department said.

The department says keeping Norsworhy in a men's prison could invite violence, including possible assault and rape.

But she could also face danger at a women's prison - or pose a threat herself - because she had a history of domestic violence before her murder conviction, the department said.

Last month, attorneys for the transgender inmate convicted of murder in Massachusetts asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a ruling denying her request for sex reassignment surgery.

A federal judge in 2012 ordered the Massachusetts Department of Correction to grant the surgery to Michelle Kosilek, but the ruling was overturned in December by the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

As in California, the appeal in Massachusetts cited security concerns about protecting the inmate.

Courts in other states have ordered hormone treatments, psychotherapy and other treatments but not surgery.


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In a very well-timed trade, a trader made over $2 million in just 28 minutes, playing what could be one of the biggest tech deals this year. 

The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Intel is in talks to buy competitor chipmaker Altera. Shares of Altera shares soared 28 percent when the report was released, valuing the company at $13.4 billion by the end of trading on Friday.

For one trader, the report allowed for incredible profits in a very short amount of time.

On Friday at 3:32 pm EDT, Journal M&A report Dana Mattioli tweeted "Intel is in talks to buy Altera. Deal would be largest in Intel's history. Scoop w/ @danacimilluca coming to http://WSJ.com $ALTR".

Within seconds, a trader jumped into the options market and bought 3,158 contracts of the April 36-strike calls priced at about 35 cents. As each contract controls 100 shares, the trader's total cost was $110,530. A call is a bullish wager that gives the purchaser the right to buy a stock at a given price on a set date.

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A puppy hit by a speeding car escaped unhurt, after he somehow got stuck in the car's front bumper. 

The car hit the stray dog in central China's Hunan Province as it ran out in front of the car. The dog stayed there for another 250 miles because the driver thought it would be too hard to take him out.

The man was convinced the dog was dead, but then started hearing whimpering noises coming from the front of the car that sounded like a dog. 

Workers from a veterinary hospital freed the dog, who quickly bonded with the driver. 


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Feeling lucky? You might struggle to match the success of a couple that beat odds of 283 billion to one by becoming millionaires - twice - in Britain's national lottery.

Unemployed former truck driver David Long and his wife, Kathleen, won their second $1.5 million prize in just 20 months on Wednesday.

The pair, who still live in a trailer in the blue-collar town of Scunthorpe, northern England, despite their previous success, also won a Jaguar car.

Camelot, the private company that runs Britain's lottery, said it calculated that the Longs had beaten odds of worse than 283 billion to one.

British betting chain, Ladbrokes, said there was a greater chance of royal baby Prince George becoming captain of England's national soccer team. 

The Longs were one of 10 winners of Saturday's U.K. National Lottery's Euromillions draw in which the jackpot is shared in order to create more millionaires. Their previous win - minus the car - was banked in July 2013.

They told reporters they plan to finally move out of their prefabricated home and go on a honeymoon cruise.

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