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

Mad Minute stories from Thursday, September 21st

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ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania high school golfer has defied huge odds by recording two holes-in-one in the same round.
Parkland High School golfer Ben Tetzlaff tells The (Allentown) Morning Call he still can't believe the feat, which came during a nine-hole practice round Monday at Iron Lakes Country Club.
The National Hold-In-One Registry calculated the odds of the feat at 67 million-to-1.
Parkland coach Scott Levan says he missed the first ace, but saw the second when Tetzlaff hit a 9-iron on the 140-yard sixth hole. Tetzlaff had already sunk a gap wedge on the 104-yard second hole.
Tetzlaff's career-low round is a 76 he shot at Allentown Municipal Golf Course. He hopes to play golf in college.
Tetzlaff says, "I still can't believe it and I'm the one who did it."

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A Texas lawmaker apparently spent more than $51,000 of her own money on an online psychic, showed up for work at the Capitol impaired by medication and hid a cellphone from investigators, prosecutors allege in a court filing this week.
Rep. Dawnna Dukes is due to face misdemeanor corruption charges at an Oct. 16 trial. She is accused of giving a taxpayer-funded raise to a legislative aide to cover gas money for shuttling her daughter back and forth from school.
The Travis County prosecutors' court filing this week is intended to inform Dukes' attorneys of allegations against her that will be asserted at trial. She's not facing charges pertaining to the allegations included in the filing.
"Under Texas law, the state is required to give notice to the defendant of any evidence, not arising from the same transaction as that on trial, that the state might attempt to introduce to prove motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan, knowledge, identity, absence of mistake, or lack of accident," District Attorney Margaret Moore said in a statement to the Austin American-Statesman .
Dukes' attorney, Dane Ball, declined to comment on the allegations.
The Travis County district attorney's office alleges in the filing that Dukes paid for the psychic from December 2014 to January 2016, totaling nearly $1,000 a week. She apparently used her own money for the payments; the court document doesn't indicate public funds were used. The district attorney's office didn't return a call Thursday seeking clarification.
Authorities contend she was noticeably impaired on one occasion while performing legislative duties at the Capitol. She showed up late to a House appropriations committee hearing on March 29 and at one point said, "I know I'm talking a lot. I'm full of morphine and will be headed out of here soon."
She's also accused of giving investigators a different cellphone from the one they were seeking when they served her with a search warrant. In addition, the filing says Dukes was absent for roll call 65 percent of the time during the 2017 legislative regular session, and 36 percent of the time in the special session.
Prosecutors still want to salvage a felony case against the lawmaker, the American-Statesman reported. The DA's office last week placed 13 felony charges against Dukes on hold after a legislative official gave conflicting information about reimbursement vouchers that Dukes is alleged to have falsified in 2013 and 2014 for days she did not travel to the Capitol.
Dukes previously had announced plans to resign, citing yearslong medical concerns. But she reneged in January and was sworn in for her 12th term.
 
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COCOA, Fla. (AP) - Police say a Florida gas station owner chased a man and fired a warning shot, forcing him to return some stolen beer.
Orlando television station WESH reports it was the fourth time store owner Sowann Suy used his gun in defense of his store in the Atlantic coast community of Cocoa. Suy, who's dubbed "Clint Eastwood" by friends, told the station he fired the shot Wednesday after the man took the beers and threatened to beat him up.
Records show Suy shot a suspect in the stomach at the store in 2009 and chased off another suspected robber the following year. In 2016, Suy wounded one man and two others were arrested during a botched robbery.
Cocoa police spokeswoman Barbara Matthews says Suy has "a perfect right to defend himself."

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A bat infestation prompted a Salt Lake City high school to cancel its after-school programs so school workers could root out the flying mammals.
Janitors at the city's West High School rounded up more than 300 bats from Monday through Wednesday, prompting the school to close its doors Wednesday afternoon.
Some flying bats were caught in midflight by janitors using butterfly nets. Others were found sleeping in classroom corners.
Salt Lake City School District spokesman Jason Olsen says the high school lies in a migratory bat path. But the number of bats this year was above average.
Students who may have come into contact with the bats were encouraged to speak with Salt Lake County Health Department personnel who were at the school on Wednesday.
The captured bats were relocated.

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A far-flung Alaska town is known for having streets that are among the most taxi-congested in the U.S. in proportion to the small number of people who call it home.
For years, locals knew the cabdrivers as a source for illegal booze in Bethel, which has 58 taxis for its population of 6,200 - one for every 107 residents. State police heard the rumors and launched a two-year investigation that recently led to charges against 18 drivers accused of selling alcohol out of their cabs without a license.
At play is a mix of strict liquor laws and cars being unable to reach the commercial hub for dozens of tiny villages on the tundra 400 miles west of Anchorage. Bethel voters lifted a decadeslong ban on alcohol sales several years ago, but the town's first liquor store in more than four decades opened just last year and closes by 7 p.m.
Taxi drivers, mostly from South Korea and Eastern Europe, have flocked to Bethel, situated in a vast region dotted with thousands of ponds where cars have to be flown in or sent by barge on a river. They shuttle tourists and people from 56 largely Eskimo villages who come to shop, see doctors or do other errands.
The proportion of cabs is far greater than in New York City, where traditional taxis number one for every 625 people. But New York also is stacked with liveries and limousines, as well as ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft, which are not players in Bethel. Taking those into account, there's one vehicle for hire for every 68 New Yorkers, close to Bethel's proportion.
In the Alaska town, it was known that people wanting alcohol could simply call one of several cab companies and ask for a "charter" ride, City Council member and longtime resident Mark Springer said.
But more people illegally sell alcohol than just the cabdrivers charged, according to Springer, who said others in the community have also seen it as a way to earn a livelihood or supplement their income.
"We use the term, 'subsistence bootlegging,'" he said.
There are plenty of reasons that illegal alcohol sales can still be a lucrative business in Bethel, Springer said, citing the lone liquor store that closes early and locals who don't want to wait to drink. Other likely customers are minors, out-of-towners or residents of surrounding villages, some of which ban alcohol.
Alaska State Troopers made about 50 undercover buys from people without an alcohol license. Prosecutors say that in most of the transactions, cabdrivers sold undercover officers cheap hard liquor for $50 to $60 a bottle. Besides the 18 cabdrivers, several others accused of working with them and one individual with no connection to taxi companies were charged.
Most of the defendants were arraigned Wednesday on misdemeanor counts of selling alcohol without a license. They pleaded not guilty and have not been jailed. One local cab company also faces the same charges.
"The general concept is, we think it's important to have a license because alcohol causes a lot of problems in communities all over the state," Alaska Assistant Attorney General John Haley said.
Rural communities have long struggled with the effects of alcohol abuse. It has been particularly brutal for Alaska Natives, who have a high rate of suicide and premature death, with alcohol long considered a major factor. Many rural communities have passed laws banning or restricting the liquor sales.
Local attorney Myron Angstman represents four of the cabdrivers who have been charged. He said they are all from South Korea and that the language barrier has been a challenge.
Angstman said he had some help talking to his clients in an initial meeting but doesn't know enough about their cases to comment. He expects to bring in a professional translator.

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ROCKLAND, Maine (AP) - A Maine woman says she'd rather go to jail than take down her pro-Donald Trump signs.
Susan Reitman's signs say "I Love Trump" and "He Won, Get over it." But the code enforcement officer in Rockland has notified her that the signs violate a local ordinance, because they are bigger than the town allows. She could be fined between $100 or more per day.
Town officials say there's a process to apply for permits to display larger signs.
But Reitman tells New England Cable News that her free speech rights are more important than the ordinance. She says she has no intention of removing her signs - or paying any fines.
She tells NECN: "If I have to sit in jail for the rest of eternity, that's my choice."

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - After spending months in futile efforts to complete a budget, Pennsylvania legislators have turned their attention to what they should be wearing to the fight over state finances.
It's another issue Democrats and Republicans can't seem to agree on.
Complaints about dress code scofflaws prompted the parliamentarian for the state House of Representatives, where Republicans are in the majority and run the show, to issue a memo last week reminding members that men must wear a coat and tie.
It touched off a debate between two legislators who also are military veterans. They argued in a string of emails distributed widely among members and staff and obtained by The Associated Press.
Democratic Rep. Jake Wheatley said he'd consider wearing a tie "if dressing in the appropriate attire would get us to actually be good public servants and do our appropriate work."
"Thanks for reminding me that we work in an environment that cares more about appearance than substance," said the representative from Allegheny County.
That triggered a response from Rep. Rick Saccone, also from Allegheny County, but a Republican from far across the ideological divide.
Saccone, an Air Force veteran, compared the dress code to military uniforms, saying they project "a sense of professionalism that impacts performance."
Wheatley, who served as a Marine Corps radio operator during the Gulf War, noted that the Legislature is "weeks past our obligated date for producing a balanced budget."
"We seem more concerned about what folks wear to the floor than what we are doing or not doing on the floor and that's a problem," he wrote.
Lawmakers passed a $32 billion spending plan in late June but so far have struggled to get a deal on new revenues to plug a $2.2 billion budget hole.
The state Senate approved a mix of borrowing and new taxes in July, but Republican House leaders did not call back their chamber until Monday.
Wheatley said most people only want to know when they'll complete the budget.
"Our mission goes well past the appropriate attire for our chamber and is now in the stages of we need to lock ourselves in the chamber and stay there on that floor or in our caucuses and working on real solutions," he wrote.
Wheatley said later he regrets using reply-all on the email and promised he'll wear a tie.
Saccone added that it's not something he's fixated upon.
"The public will say, 'Why are you so worried about coat-and-tie when you're supposed to be working on a budget?'" Saccone said. "It's not either-or."
Late Wednesday, the House voted narrowly to approve a Republican plan to fund the budget, sending it to the House. Saccone was a "yes," and Wheatley voted "no."

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LOCKPORT, N.Y. (AP) - Officials with an animal welfare organization say they're removed hundreds of reptiles, birds, rats and mice from a western New York home.
The Niagara Gazette reports that the SPCA of Niagara says investigators checking out a house in the town of Lockport found hundreds of creatures inside, including 31 snakes, 30 quail, 13 rabbits, 10 cats, five ferrets, two parakeets and about 250 rats and mice.
The animals have been signed over to the local SPCA shelter. SPCA officials say the animals will be put up for adoption.

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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - A Florida sheriff's deputy is accused of stealing cash, credit cards and a wallet from a crime scene.
Orange County Sheriff's Capt. Angelo Nieves tells local news outlets that Deputy Joseph Suheil Haddad was arrested Tuesday following an internal affairs investigation found that he'd used the credit cards illegally.
Officials say Haddad responded to a burglary on Sunday, which evolved into a drug investigation. The person who reported the burglary was then arrested. When that man asked deputies if he could gather his belongings, he noticed that items including $1,750 in cash and the credit cards were missing.
Haddad is charged with grand theft and was fired and stripped of his law enforcement powers.
He's been with the agency since 2016.
It's not known whether he has a lawyer.

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(Huffington Post) The term "beer belly" could soon have a whole new meaning.
The Dadbag is a fanny pack that is designed to look like a hairy man's stomach.
Albert Pukies, a 27-year-old who lives in London, England, invented the fabric pouch.
"My inspiration was seeing all the posts about dad bods being cool," he told HuffPost. "I think people want them because of that reason. You can have a dad bod without any health issues."
The dad bod refers to a 2015 trend started by a college student who claimed "girls everywhere are going nuts" for a specific male body type that strikes "a nice balance between a beer gut and working out."
So Pukies, who makes his living as an art director, decided to design a few versions of that ideal.
"It's obviously meant to be funny but I do want to produce them," Pukies told HuffPost. "I'm looking for manufacturers at the moment."
Puckies told HuffPost he'd like to sell them for about $30 a pop and he is considering a Kickstarter campaign.
Regardless of what you may think about the bag, it is a clever design. Plus Pukies seems to have a good sense of humor about his invention.
When asked what one would carry in the Dadbag, he replied with:
"I'm thinking of typical dad items, like beer, medicine, a sandwich, wallet, sunglasses, keys."
Because, really, what dad doesn't leave the house without a sandwich?
To find out more about the Dadbag, check out Pukies' site here.
 

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