Mad Minute stories for Thursday, November 12th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories for Thursday, November 12th

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- Parking tickets can be paid with donations of canned food instead of cash during a monthlong "Food for Fines" program in Lexington, Kentucky.
The city's parking authority will accept cans for citations from Nov. 16 to Dec. 18, The Lexington Herald-Leader reported.
Those who donate 10 canned food items will receive a $15 credit on citations. Customers with multiple citations may bring in 10 cans per citation for the credits.
God's Pantry Food Bank will use the food to stock shelves at its four Lexington locations.
"One expired parking meter ticket could mean two meals for hungry Fayette County families," God's Pantry CEO Marian Guinn said.
Citizens brought in more than 6,200 cans of food as payment during last year's inaugural "Food for Fines" program, LexPark Executive Director Gary Means said.
Last year, the program was limited to LexPark citations for expired parking meters. This year any parking citation issued by either LexPark or the police department will be eligible.
"We hope by opening the program up to all types of citations, we'll see the numbers increase," Means said.
The parking authority suggests large cans with vegetables and proteins. No out-of-date, damaged or open canned goods will be accepted.

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NEW YORK (AP) -- A man with a long history of pretending to be a transit worker and commandeering subway trains for joy rides was arrested Wednesday after stealing a commercial passenger bus, police said.
Darius McCollum was arrested by officers who spotted the Greyhound bus traveling down a street in Brooklyn, police said. They were still investigating how and from where the bus was stolen. Police initially said the bus had been taken from New Jersey but said later they suspect it had been stolen from the Port Authority Bus Terminal, the nation's busiest.
McCollum become a celebrity of sorts for escapades that began in 1981 at age 15, when he piloted a subway train six stops without any passengers noticing. He grew up in Queens near a station serving two Metropolitan Transportation Authority lines and learned the mechanics of the transit system from workers who took an interest in him.
Over the years, McCollum has had more than two dozen transit-related arrests. In 2008, he was arrested for stealing a Trailways bus from Hoboken, New Jersey.
After he was paroled on the bus theft in 2013, McCollum told The Associated Press he planned to get in touch with a nonprofit to help him find a therapist, and work or vocational school.
"I'm actually happy. It was a rough process but I finally made it," he said, adding that his outlaw days were behind him. "I can't afford to get arrested again, I can't deal with the jail thing - it's too much, the gang mentality."
McCollum was being held on Wednesday at a police station in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn. There was no immediate response to a message left with his lawyer from previous cases.

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CUMBERLAND, Md. (AP) -- Four young men got more than a meal when they killed and grilled a timber rattlesnake in western Maryland - they were hit with fines of $200 each in court.
Online court records show the men from Glen Burnie pleaded guilty Tuesday in district court in Cumberland to possessing or destroying the rattlesnake. It's a state-protected species.
Each was fined $500, with $300 suspended. All received probation before judgment, meaning their convictions can be expunged after probationary periods ranging from 14 to 28 months.
Maryland Natural Resources Police say the men were camping in the Green Ridge State Forest in August when they killed the snake with a BB gun and grilled it.
The defendants are 18-year-olds Austin Golas and Travis Luedtke and 19-year-olds Paul Lafon and Erick Reffitt.
A fifth defendant, 19-year-old Jared Holt, is scheduled for trial Dec. 8.

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WASHINGTON (AP) - Charge an error to the company licensed by Major League Baseball to produce the Washington Nationals' 2016 calendar.
Both on the back cover and inside the calendar, there is an image of Boston's Fenway Park - instead of Nationals Park.
Oops.
MLB issued a statement that said: "Our licensee used an incorrect photo in its 2016 Nationals calendar, a product that the Nationals were not involved in producing. We are working quickly to rectify the situation, including recalling the calendars from retail."
It's not the first time this sort of gaffe has happened to the Nationals.
Back in 2009, a uniform company took the blame for producing jerseys that read "Natinals" and were worn by a couple of Washington players during a game.

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SEATTLE (AP) - A federal jury in Seattle awarded $21.5 million in damages to an Illinois man who was injured by an automatic sliding-glass door on a cruise ship in 2011.
The verdict included $16.5 million in punitive damages. James Hausman's attorneys argued during a nine-day trial that dozens of other passengers have been injured by the doors on Holland America Line cruises because of problems with their sensors, The Seattle Times reported Tuesday.
The company has denied that claim and asked the court to reduce the judgment. It says it will appeal.
Surveillance video shows Hausman, 61, of Springfield, Illinois, walking through an automatic door when it shut on Nov. 26, 2011, as the M/S Amsterdam approached Hawaii. Hausman, who was traveling with his wife and daughter on the beginning leg of a cruise around the world, got hit in the face and side of the head.
Holland America said in court documents that Hausman walked into the closing doors.
A ship doctor diagnosed him with a concussion, and he finished the trip. But Hausman's attorneys say tests later showed that he suffered a minor brain injury that has caused seizures, memory loss and vertigo.
"He still has trouble with things that would have been simple before," said Hausman's lawyer, Rick Friedman, adding that his client has sold his gold and precious-metals retail business.
Friedman alleged that Holland America did not reveal documentation on up to 34 other sliding-door incidents throughout its fleet going back three years. U.S. District Judge Barbara Rothstein allowed the jury to hear about 16 of those incidents that she decided were relevant.
Motion sensors on the doors were set to open and close faster than normal, Friedman said. Holland America denied that allegation said it had no comment on the specifics of Hausman's lawsuit.
"Holland America Line is committed to the safety and security of our guests and take all incidents very seriously," the company said in a statement.

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The deputy leader of South Lanarkshire Council in Scotland might be rethinking the recent funding cuts for public bathrooms he recently announced. 
He was recently ticketed for peeing in the street, when police clearly caught him in the act in public. 
Jackie Burns campaigned to close public bathrooms throughout the area earlier this year, which many people opposed, and even collected a petition to show their disapproval for the plan.

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ODESSA, Del. (AP) -- An emu on the run for more than 60 days has prompted lockdowns at two elementary schools in Delaware.
The runaway emu was spotted Monday near Spring Meadow Elementary School and Old State Elementary School, leading to a "soft lockdown" at both schools. Officials sent a letter alerting parents and saying students remained inside while normal activity continued.
Delaware Department of Agriculture spokesman Daniel Shortridge says no one is sure who owns the bird. Over the last week, authorities have received a growing number of calls from people who have spotted the bird or come close to hitting it.
The agency has asked police to shoot the emu if public safety is at risk. Shortridge says killing the bird isn't the preferred solution.

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(CNN) - Police in Oregon recently dealt with a break-in of a furry kind.
According to the Newport Police Department's Facebook page, officers recently investigated a report of suspicious activity at an art gallery.
When they got there, they found four raccoons inside the premises.
Police snapped pictures of the masked bandits caught in the act.
Officers said the suspects are known by their street names of home dog, Da Nails, Squeaky Feets and Two-Toes Todd.
After a brief chase and scuffle, authorities say the raccoons were captured without incident or injury.

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If one Indonesian government official gets his way, some hungry crocodiles could someday work as prison guards.
The head of the nation's Anti-Narcotics Agency says he wants to build a prison island for drug offenders surrounded by the fiercest reptiles possible.
He's even visited area crocodile farms to check out possible recruits.
A local news website quoted Commander General Budi Waseso as saying crocodiles would make better guards than humans because they can't be bribed into letting inmates escape.
The plan for housing death row drug convicts is still in early stages, and it may not actually include reptile guards.
Indonesia is known for having some of the world's toughest anti-drug laws.

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) -- A collision repair shop in western Michigan that fixes cars after crashes involving deer got a surprise visitor from one of the animals.
Star Collision CARSTAR general manager Terry VandenToorn tells The Grand Rapids Press that the buck was spotted running down the sidewalk in Grand Rapids before it went into the business Tuesday afternoon. It came in through a delivery door and got stuck inside.
The buck ran round inside the shop before employees corralled it at the bottom of a set of stairs. While they were watching it, they took photos and video of the deer. Authorities responded, safely tranquilized the deer and took it away to be released.
VandenToorn joked that with hunters waiting in the woods for deer, "They should have just come here."
 

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