Mad Minute stories from Friday, April 21st - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Friday, April 21st

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -- Prosecutors say an Alaska dentist charged with Medicaid fraud pulled a sedated patient's tooth while riding a hoverboard.
Seth Lookhart was charged with 17 counts of Medicaid fraud after prosecutors say he billed Medicaid $1.8 million last year for IV sedation used in procedures that didn't call for it.
Prosecutors say in an indictment that investigators found a video on Lookhart's phone of him riding a hoverboard while extracting a sedated patient's tooth. They say he texted the video to his office manager and joked that it was a "new standard of care." Prosecutors say investigators contacted the patient and she told them she was unaware that Lookhart was riding the hoverboard while operating on her.
Lookhart's attorney, Michael Moberly, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Lookhart's office manager is also charged in the case.

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YEADON, Pa. (AP) -- Police are trying to determine who shipped 10 pounds of marijuana from California to a pastor in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Yeadon police tell WTXF-TV the drugs arrived Thursday, in bundles stuffed into a plastic bucket inside a cardboard box that was delivered by United Parcel Service.
The package was sent from Sacramento.
But the woman who received it is a church pastor who tells authorities it wasn't meant for her. Police believe someone else might have been instructed to watch for the package, but failed to pick it up.
Police Chief Donald Molineux (mawl-in-OH') says the pastor is "very upset and traumatized" and afraid someone might come to her home looking for the drugs.
Police are hoping surveillance video from a drop-off location will identify who shipped the package.

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TILLER, Ore. (AP) -- In the tiny, dying timber town of Tiller, the old cliche is true. If you blink, you might actually miss it.
But these days, this dot on a map in southwestern Oregon is generating big-city buzz for an unlikely reason: Almost the entire town is for sale.
The asking price of $3.5 million brings with it six houses, the shuttered general store and gas station, the land under the post office, undeveloped parcels, water rights and infrastructure that includes sidewalks, fire hydrants and a working power station. Tiller Elementary School, a six-classroom building that closed in 2014, is for sale separately for $350,000.
Potential buyers have come forward but are remaining anonymous, and backup offers are still being accepted.
The listing represents a melancholy crossroads for Tiller, a once-bustling logging outpost that sprang up after the turn of the last century deep in what is now the Umpqua National Forest, about 230 miles south of Portland. The post office opened in 1902, and miners, loggers, ranchers and farmers flocked to the community along a pristine river.
By the 1940s and 1950s, there were three timber mills running, and the town expanded the elementary school and built a new general store.
Then, nearly three decades ago, logging on the federal forest lands that encircle Tiller came to a near standstill because of environmental regulations. The mills closed, and families moved away. One longtime resident began buying up properties. When he died three years ago, the family owned much of the town.
Then the Tiller Elementary School closed and was up for sale, as well as a small market, and the man's estate bought those too - and the potential became clear.
The listing includes more than 256 acres (1 square kilometer) in 29 distinct parcels, water and timber rights, and a variety of zonings, from residential to industrial.
About 235 people still live in the unincorporated area around Tiller, and have long relied on the buildings now for sale along historic Highway 227 as a gathering spot and one of the only places to shop for groceries in miles.
"Between the dying economy and the dying owners, Tiller became a new opportunity that had never been available before," said Richard Caswell, executor of the estate. "I started getting inquiries from all over the world, essentially, 'What was it? And what could you do with it?' It's the buyer and their imagination that's going to determine what Tiller can become."
The potential buyers have said through the seller's broker that they intend to turn the school into some type of campus and create a "permaculture" development that respects the town's remaining residents and its picturesque setting in a bend in the emerald-tinted South Umpqua River. They want to make reopening the market a priority.
"The buyers understand that they only have one shot at a first impression," said Garrett Zoller, principal broker for LandandWildlife.com, the seller's realtor. "They want to address this project with the community in mind."
Beyond that, Tiller's future remains shrouded in mystery.
The downtown is a ghost town, but plenty of people still live tucked into the mountains in a region where bears wander onto porches and where picking up a cellphone signal takes a 30-minute drive.
Residents gather at the church for coffee and cinnamon rolls on Fridays and collect their mail at the one-room post office - when it's open. Some have a sense of humor: A small, weathered sign affixed to the defunct market reads, "Last one out of Tiller turn out the light."
Sarah Crume and a few other mothers cling to a sense of community by meeting with their young children for playtime at the church, one of the few places not for sale. She's raising five daughters here and had to send her younger children to school in the next closest town when Tiller Elementary shut down.
"It is a little scary, especially raising our kids in this place that we love," Crume said. "I'm just wondering what kind of impact it's going to have on the people."
Paula Ellis grew up in Tiller on a ranch and spent her childhood hunting and riding horses here. Her daughters' beds are decorated with the skins of bears they killed when they were teenagers, and the antlers of the first deer Ellis bagged hangs on a wall near the front door.
She met her husband at the elementary school and recalls the annual end-of-the-year contests for the children that were dubbed the Tiller Olympics.
A giant cross rises over her home from an adjacent hilltop, and Ellis lately has found herself praying.
"If you do choose to live here and raise kids here, it's a community you fall in love with," Ellis said, wiping away tears. "And we don't want to lose that."
For Rosemary Klep, news of the sale brought on strong emotions. Her parents built the market that's now for sale in 1947, and she grew up camping and roaming the forests near town. Her family had the only telephone in Tiller and, for a while, the only TV.
"This town has been in dire straits for many, many years," said Klep, 72, who now lives near Olympia, Washington. "But we loved growing up there. To us, it was a paradise."

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ROSEVILLE, Mich. (AP) -- Warming up your car in the driveway might be a Michigan winter tradition, but a judge says it's not legal in a Detroit suburb if no one's behind the wheel.
Nick Taylor challenged a $125 ticket in court Thursday and lost. His lawyer, Nicholas Somberg, says a Roseville ordinance against unattended running vehicles shouldn't apply to driveways.
But Judge Marco Santia says the law is in the public interest.
Taylor got attention in January when he posted a photo of the ticket on Facebook. The post was shared more than 6,000 times and garnered more than 5,000 comments.
Roseville Police Chief James Berlin has defended the ticket. He says a thief could have stolen Taylor's car.

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VIENNA (AP) -- He who burps loudest laughs best - at least in this case.
Nearly a year after a policeman ticketed Edin Mehic for loudly belching next to him, the Vienna bartender has won his appeal.
Mehic was fined 70 euros ($75) for a sonorous post-kebab burp next to the officer at an amusement park. The ticket said he violated "public decency with a loud belch next to a police officer."
But a court document Mehic emailed to The Associated Press on Friday shows authorities have ruled in his favor. It says there was "never proof" that he burped to affront the officer.
Mehic's belch resonated in Austria long after it was emitted. Groups organized to support him, and a kebab chain paid for both his ticket and an all-expenses trip to Istanbul.

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WOBURN, Mass. (AP) -- A Massachusetts man has pleaded guilty to selling unused burial plots that had already been purchased by other people and pocketing the cash.
Prosecutors say 71-year-old John Hughes was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation, the first three months of which must be served in home confinement, and ordered to pay nearly $75,000 in restitution to the city of Melrose. He pleaded guilty in Middlesex Superior Court to multiple counts of larceny.
Authorities say Hughes, of Revere, was appointed administrator of a city-owned cemetery in 2007. Beginning in 2011, he started selling unused burial plots at discounted rates, even though the plots had already been sold. He didn't tell city officials and kept the money. He sold 13 plots in all.

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BOSTON (AP) - People looking for the perfect family pet tend to choose a dog based on appearance or breed - but that's barking up the wrong tree.
"If you think they're cute, you bring them home," said Jodi Andersen, a dog trainer and author.
That's why Andersen, along with MaryAnn Zeman and Sharon Mosse, founded the new online business How I Met My Dog. It works like Match or eHarmony, fitting humans with dogs based on what really matters: personality, lifestyle and behavior.
Several other online services match people with pets, but the founders of How I Met My Dog say they take things to a new level with a more detailed, science-based questionnaire that narrows the number of dogs that meet a human adopter's lifestyle and expectations.
The service is needed because about 4 million dogs per year are handed over to shelters and rescues, they said. Too many end up back in shelters, and too many are being euthanized because they can't find good homes.
"The system we're using now is broken and has to be fixed," Andersen said.
Placing a pet in the wrong home is one of the biggest concerns at the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which finds homes for thousands of dogs and other animals every year, spokesman Rob Halpin said.
Persuading adopters not to fall in love with the first dog they see is a major issue.
"Sometimes our emotions take leave of our senses," said Halpin, who was not familiar with How I Met My Dog.
The MSPCA has "adoption counselors" who try to ensure people are matched with the right dogs, but Halpin embraced the idea of services that smooth that process.
"We welcome the notion of technology helping people do some of the hard work it takes to pick the right pet," he said.
How I Met My Dog, which also helps people who want to find a new home for a dog they just can't live with anymore, so far has partnered with 24 Boston-area shelters and rescues.
The plan is to role it out nationally by the end of the year.
A person looking to adopt fills out what the founders call a "PET profile" for personality, expectations and training style. Are you a couch potato or an active athlete? Do you want a dog that gets along with children? Are you a disciplinarian when training a dog or more laid back?
The dog profiles are completed either by the shelter staff or the current owner.
The algorithm matches the humans with dogs that complement their lifestyle.
"For example, if you have kids, you will never see a dog from us that doesn't get along with kids," Zeman said.
Once the website matches someone with a dog, it's up to the adopter to meet that dog in person. The shelter or owner ultimately determines whether there's a match.
Pawfect Life Rescue, of Uxbridge, Massachusetts, was one of the first rescue organizations to sign on with How I Met My Dog.
"They have been pretty spot on so far with having the right people come and look at the right dog," Pawfect Life founder and president Julie Uthoff said.
The Fredette family, of Waltham, Massachusetts, adopted their dog, Roscoe, from Pawfect Life after being matched through How I Met My Dog. Kate Fredette, her husband and two children had been thinking of getting a new dog for about a year, but they just didn't know how to ensure they would get a good fit.
"It was confusing," Fredette said.
They obviously wanted a dog that gets along with children. They wanted a dog they could take on family trips. They wanted a social dog they could take to the park.
They couldn't be happier with Roscoe, a 4-month-old mixed breed.
"Mornings are so much better around here," Fredette said.

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - It wasn't a 10-speed, but a bank robber in Puerto Rico was still able to elude police Friday by fleeing on a bicycle.
Authorities said the unidentified suspect stole some $3,000 from Banco Popular after handing a teller a note that suggested he was carrying a weapon.
The incident occurred in the Rio Piedras suburb of the capital of San Juan.
Police said they believe the suspect is the same man who robbed another bank last week, although he did not flee on a bicycle that time.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- A Philadelphia storefront featured prominently in the "Rocky" films has been demolished.
The building was home to the fictional pet store where Rocky courted his eventual wife, Adrian. It was featured in several of the films and was a frequent stop on tours designed for Rocky fans.
Tour Guide Ben Caplan tells Philly.com he was taking a group there Thursday when he found construction crews tearing the building down.
The building, once a real pet shop, had been empty for several years.

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NEW YORK (AP) - Bill Murray is set to go on tour with a chamber music trio for a program of songs and literary readings.
The New York Times reports the actor is pairing up with cellist Jan Vogler for the project titled "New Worlds." The highlights of the tour include songs from Van Morrison and "West Side Story" and readings from Mark Twain, Walt Whitman and Ernest Hemingway. Music includes the works of Gershwin, Bach and Schubert.
The program will premiere in the U.S. on July 20 at California's Festival Napa Valley. A recording of "New Worlds" is planned for release in August.
The Times reports the odd pairing for the tour stems from Murray and Vogler sitting across from each other on a flight from Berlin to New York in 2013.
 

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