Mad Minute stories from Thursday, June 22nd - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Thursday, June 22nd

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- Police in Little Rock say a mall worker wrestled away a stripper pole from a would-be thief who bit the employee during the struggle.
According to police, a woman entered a Spencer's store in Little Rock's Park Plaza Mall at midday Wednesday and tried to return an item. A police report says that the woman became frustrated when she was refused money and tried to leave with a stripper pole instead.
Little Rock television station KATV reports that the woman bit the worker's arm during a struggle. But police say the employee was able to take back the stripper pole, valued at $40, and the woman ran away.
Police say no arrests have been made.

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LONDON (AP) -- Boys at a British high school have found a novel way around strict uniform rules banning shorts, as the country swelters through a heatwave.
The schoolboys at Isca Academy in the southwestern city of Exeter donned skirts instead of the officially mandated gray slacks.
Photos in British media show the boys wearing short-sleeved white shirts, school ties and the gray and white plaid skirts that the girls wear.
Devon County Council spokesman David Beasley said about 30 boys turned up to school in skirts on Thursday, when temperatures dropped to a cool 20 degrees Celsius (68F) after days of much hotter weather. None of the skirted students was punished, he said.
The school's head teacher, Aimee Mitchell, issued a written statement that did not mention the skirts, but pledged to revisit the uniform rules.
"We recognize that the last few days have been exceptionally hot and we are doing our utmost to enable both students and staff to remain as comfortable as possible," she wrote.
"Shorts are not currently part of our uniform for boys and I would not want to make any changes without consulting both students and their families. However, with hotter weather becoming more normal, I would be happy to consider a change for the future," she added.
The British students were not alone in challenging dress codes as a way of cooling down.
In the western French city of Nantes, male bus drivers reportedly wore skirts this week that are part of female drivers' uniform to protest the fact that they were not allowed to wear shorts.
 
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BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- A sequoia seedling that naturalist John Muir sent to Idaho more than a century ago and was planted in a doctor's yard has become a massive tree and an obstacle to progress.
The sequoia planted in 1912 is in the way of a Boise hospital's expansion but has become a city landmark over the decades and the largest sequoia in Idaho. Chopping down the tree would be cheaper but has public relations risks.
So St. Luke's Health System is spending $300,000 to move the 98-foot (30-meter) tree to city property about two blocks away starting Friday.
"We understand the importance of this tree to this community," said Anita Kissée, spokeswoman for the hospital. Cutting it down "was never even an option."
Texas-based Environmental Design specializes in moving big trees and plans to lift the sequoia Friday afternoon onto inflatable, rolling tubes. The tree is set to start moving at midnight Saturday and arrive at its new home around noon Sunday.
"This is going to be one of what we call our champion trees," said David Cox, whose overseeing the move for the company. "We want to take extreme care to make sure everything goes well."
Cox said the tree will be the tallest the company has ever moved as well as the largest in circumference at more than 20 feet (6 meters) near its base. He estimates the total weight, with roots and dirt, will be about 800,000 pounds (363,000 kilograms). He puts the chances of the tree surviving at 95 percent.
The move is part of St. Luke's expansion to meet growing health demands in the state's capital.
Muir, somewhere around 1912, sent four sequoia seedlings to Emile Grandjean, a conservation-minded professional forester and early employee of the U.S. Forest Service in Idaho, his granddaughter, Mary Grandjean, told The Associated Press.
Her father told her that Emile Grandjean planted two of the sequoias at his home in Boise and the two others went to the doctor's home.
New owners of the Grandjean home later cut down the trees, Mary Grandjean said. The fate of a third sequoia isn't clear. Of the four sequoias, the only one that still exists is the one being moved.
"We've all got our fingers crossed that the tree is going to make it to its new location," she said.
Cox said sequoias in their native habitat in California draw moisture from the misty atmosphere and can live for several thousand years and reach several hundred feet tall.
The Idaho sequoia is in a drier, colder climate, and the tree lost its original top in the 1980s due to damage from Christmas decorations. The hospital at that point hired tree experts and the sequoia has since thrived despite living in a high desert environment.
Cox said soil analysis has been done at the transplant site to ensure it will allow the tree to keep growing. He said most of the soil surrounding the tree's roots also is being moved to the new site to improve the chances of the transplant succeeding. If it works, the tree could remain a Boise landmark for several more centuries.
"I would say three- to five-hundred years at least," Cox said. "It's still a young tree."

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SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- Some folks in Oregon might not want to ask, when served an elk burger or a venison steak, where the meat came from.
Under a roadkill bill passed overwhelmingly by the Legislature and signed by the governor, motorists who crash into the animals can now harvest the meat to eat.
It's not as unusual as people might think. About 20 other states also allow people to take meat from animals killed by vehicles. Aficionados say roadkill can be high-quality, grass-fed grub.
"Eating roadkill is healthier for the consumer than meat laden with antibiotics, hormones and growth stimulants, as most meat is today," noted People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA.
Washington state began allowing the salvaging of deer and elk carcasses a year ago. Pennsylvania might top the country in road kills, with Oregon wildlife officials telling lawmakers that the eastern state had over 126,000 vehicle-wildlife accidents in 2015.
"We are at or near the top of the list. We have a lot of roads and a lot of deer," said Travis Lau, spokesman for the Pennsylvania Game Commission, though he added the total number was uncertain.
Pennsylvanians can take deer or turkeys that are killed on the road if they report the incidents to the commission within 24 hours, Lau said in a telephone interview.
Gov. Kate Brown signed Oregon's bill last week after the Senate and House passed it without a single "nay" vote.
But a few Oregonians voiced opposition.
Vivian Kirkpatrick-Pilger, a Republican Party official in mountainous, forested Josephine County, told legislators that people have been salvaging roadkill meat in Oregon for years - since vehicles and animals have been colliding - and they've never needed a law or permit to do it.
Actually, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said that before last week, the only people allowed to keep roadkill were licensed furtakers, and no one - not even licensed hunters - could keep game animals found as roadkill.
The rules were aimed at discouraging people from hitting a game animal with their vehicle to take the meat or antlers. "It's not a legal method of hunting," the department's website says.
Les Helgeson, of the community of Beaver, near the northwest coast, told legislators that roadkill "would not be palatable, much less pass any sense of health standards for human consumption."
But those who have sampled it say otherwise.
Todd Toven of Castle Rock, Colorado, posted a video on YouTube showing himself carving up a deer that had been hit by a vehicle on a highway and finished off by a deputy sheriff's bullet. Toven made it into venison sausage.
"A lot of who people don't hunt hear the word 'roadkill' and they get turned off," Toven said. "We're talking perfectly clean, cold meat."
Oregon's new law calls for the state Fish and Wildlife Commission to adopt rules for the issuance of permits for the purpose of salvaging meat for human consumption from deer or elk that have been accidentally killed in a vehicle collision.
The first permits are to be issued no later than Jan. 1, 2019. The antlers must be handed over to the state's wildlife agency.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Los Angeles police say a woman led officers on a wild chase in a suspected stolen car that lasted a half-hour and ended when she crashed into a pole.
Officials say at one point during the pursuit early Thursday the suspect stopped the sedan suddenly and then backed up and rammed a patrol car. One officer was hospitalized in unknown condition.
As she led officers through suburban Van Nuys, the woman gestured out the window to bystanders in the streets.
At the end of the chase, she lit a cigarette, stuck her head out of the car's sunroof and ignored officers' commands.
The suspect was dragged from the vehicle and taken into custody.

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ROME (AP) -- The Italian port city of Genoa has taken pride in its famed pesto sauce to new heights by granting special airport waivers for those who can't get enough of the basil and pine nut pasta sauce.
Genoa's airport is letting travelers take as much as 500 grams of pesto in their carry-on luggage, exempting them from the 100-milliliter rule for liquids in carry-on baggage. The catch: Passengers must make a donation of 50 cents or more to a charity that airlifts sick children to hospitals.
The airport said in a statement this week that some 500 euros had been raised in the first 20 days of the initiative, which was inspired by the anguish of having to confiscate so many jars of pesto from foodies trying to get them through security.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Philadelphia police say a man repossessing a minivan towed it with a sleeping child in the back.
They say the man used GPS to track the vehicle early Thursday morning after the 7-year-old's mother said she had stopped to run into work at a pizzeria.
The woman and bystanders screamed as the tow truck drove off with the girl and the vehicle, which police say had tinted windows and was double-parked.
The tow truck driver said he checked and didn't see anyone inside. Police said he might have missed the girl because she was under a blanket.
Police stopped the vehicle about 10 blocks away. They said the girl was OK.
The investigation is ongoing.

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Frisco, TX - The Frisco Roughriders, a minor league baseball team in Texas, have a team member they've been working with for a while now, but something seems a little off.
Brooks is the Roughriders "Bat-Dog" in training.
He's a good boy, no doubt. 
But when it comes to retrieving a bat, Brooks hasn't quite got the hang of his duties on the field. 
It's not hard to see why has a minor league contract. Still, don't get in his way when he's running the bases. 
Brooks, with his boundless enthusiasm, has no problem taking you out.
Keep at it Brooks! 

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Fort Worth, TX - While shoplifting four DVDs from Walmart in Saturday, a Fort Worth man probably did not expect to be brought to justice by The Dark Knight. But that is exactly what happened.
Fort Worth Police officer Damon Cole dresses up as superheroes for a good cause.
"I dress up as many different super heroes and I travel the country in my off time seeing children with cancer and other illnesses," Cole said. "I do that to give them inspiration and hope to keep fighting."
Cole was dressed as Batman at a kids safety fair on Saturday when he was alerted to a man suspected of shoplifting four movies.
"Batman says 'I want you to know I have this Batman costume on but I'm an off-duty police officer," Anthony Drake, a Walmart community involvement member said.
Since the DVDs amounted to less than $100, the suspect was just given a citation. The suspect did not want to talk about his arrest, but he did take a selfie with Batman after being arrested.
The irony of the situation is that he was attempting to steal the Lego Batman movie.
"You cannot steal my movie. Come on," Cole said.

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Sandusky, OH - They skipped the wedding dress and tux, instead wearing bathing suits to begin their lives together.
Steve Gifford and Rachel Zaboroweski from Springfield, Illinois got married at noon on Wednesday in a slippery wet way at Cedar Point's newly expanded water park.
They first exchanged rings at the bottom before racing to the top of a six-story slide and saying "I do." 
Once they sealed everything with a kiss, the newlyweds climbed inside a point plummet capsule to take the plunge on a 400-foot-long adventure that begins with the floor dropping from beneath their bare feet.
A makeshift wedding reception with friends and family was held for the happy couple at the bottom of the slide.
The unique nuptials was part of a nationwide contest. A couple from north canton had also been selected to get married atop the slide, but later backed out.

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