Mad Minute stories from Monday, February 19th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Monday, February 19th

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LONDON (AP) - Fast-food fans were in a flutter Monday after most of the 900 KFC outlets in the U.K. and Ireland were forced to close because of a shortage of chicken.
The company apologized to customers, blaming "teething problems" with its new delivery partner, DHL.
KFC first apologized for the problems on Saturday. In an update Monday, it listed almost 300 stores as open, but did not say when the rest might join them.
It said those branches that remained open were operating a limited menu or shortened hours.
"We know that this might have inconvenienced some of you over the last few days, and disappointed you when you wanted your fried chicken fix - we're really sorry about that," the company said in a statement.
DHL, which recently took over the KFC contract from Bidvest Logistics, said that "due to operational issues a number of deliveries in recent days have been incomplete or delayed."
When DHL announced in October that it had won the KFC contract alongside logistics firm QSL, it promised to "re-write the rule book and set a new benchmark for delivering fresh products to KFC in a sustainable way."

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) - A South Pacific cruise was interrupted by brawls apparently caused by a 23-member family who threw punches at other passengers, some of whom said they locked themselves in cabins to escape three days of violence.
The Carnival Legend arrived in its home port of Melbourne on Saturday, a day after a family was offloaded in an unscheduled stop in Eden, New South Wales in Australia. Police said they were investigating the incident and the operator apologized for the "disruptive behavior" by the group that was removed from the cruise liner.
The "big Italian family" spent days attacking Australians aboard the ship, with people "getting strangled and punched up," passenger Lisa Bolitho told reporters.
"Very violent, they were full-on attacks," she said.
She also questioned the ship's management, quoting the captain as saying, "'What do you want me to do about it - throw them overboard?'"
Cellphone video footage purportedly of the brawl on Friday shows security guards fighting and trying to separate passengers amid shouting and kicking.
Bolitho's son Jarrah said he was among those targeted and fled and locked himself in the cabin with his mother.
"I was watching the fight and one guy came up to me and said 'Do you want to go too bro?'" he said, adding the offenders were in their late teens and early 20s. "My mum had to drag me away from it all. They were trying to pick on any Aussie they could find."
Carnival Cruise Line said it was offering guests a 25 percent future cruise credit as a "goodwill gesture" but some passengers criticized the offer.
"I won't be travelling Carnival ever again so a 25 percent off a future cruise in my eyes is unacceptable," Mark Morrison said.
The cruise liner with more than 2,000 passengers was on a 10-day trip from Melbourne to New Caledonia, a French territory in the South Pacific.
 
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BERLIN (AP) - Police in western Germany have freed two men who became entangled with a mannequin and a large, remote controlled car.
Officers were called after cries were heard from an apartment in the city of Mainz in the early hours of Saturday.
Police found the 58-year-old tenant and a 61-year-old visitor "hopelessly locked together" with the toy car and the mannequin - which was dressed in a knight's costume.
Officers were able to free the men, who were too drunk to explain how their unfortunate predicament had come about.
According to a police statement, "the whole thing would have remained a funny episode" but the younger man was "more than impolite" and now faces a charge of insulting officers.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers who support changing the official state song think the time is right to finally wipe away "Northern scum" and other sensitive pre-Civil War phrases.
"Maryland, My Maryland," set to the traditional seasonal tune of "O,Tannenbaum," was written in 1861 by James Ryder Randall and adopted as the state song in 1939.
Previous attempts to change it have stalled, partly because lawmakers were reluctant to tinker with history. Now, some say recent events involving Confederate statues may help to change the language in what was originally a poem that doubled as a call to arms.
In August, several days after violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, Maryland officials removed from the statehouse grounds a statue of Roger Taney. Taney was the U.S. Supreme Court justice who wrote the 1857 Dred Scott decision that upheld slavery and denied citizenship to African-Americans.
Also in August, the University of Maryland marching band announced it would no longer play the song before football games.
"I think exactly this is the year," said Del. Antonio Hayes, a Baltimore Democrat who is sponsoring one of the bills to change the song. "Given what's happened in Charlottesville, given what's happened with the monuments and all of the tension here in Maryland, I think this is the year to do it."
Baltimore, Maryland's largest city, saw long-simmering economic and racial tensions erupt in April 2015, after the death of a black man, Freddie Gray, in police custody triggered the city's worst riots in decades.
Randall's poem calls for Maryland to secede from the Union at a time before the Civil War when many Maryland residents sympathized with the Confederacy. He wrote it while distraught about a friend shot during a melee when Union troops marched through Baltimore on their way to Washington.
The song begins with a hostile reference to President Abraham Lincoln: "The despot's heel is on thy shore, Maryland! His torch is at thy temple door, Maryland!"
It ends with a call for the state to stand up to the Union: "She is not dead, nor deaf, or dumb - Huzza! She spurns the Northern scum!"
Sen. Cheryl Kagan, a Democrat, is proposing a bill that would repeal the current state song and find a replacement with the help of a contest.
"It's long overdue to change Maryland's state song," Kagan said.
Another measure in the Senate would replace the words written by Randall in 1861 with ones penned by John T. White in 1894 describing the state's natural beauty.
Hayes' bill in the House would revise the state song to be the poem "Maryland, My Maryland," written by Sean Tully last year and derived from Randall's poem. It removes language considered to be offensive and replaces the line "Remember Howard's warlike thrust," a reference to John Eager Howard who was a distinguished infantry officer in the Revolutionary War and a Maryland governor. The line would be replaced with: "May Tubman's name remain august," a reference to abolitionist Harriet Tubman, a Maryland native.
Sen. Robert Cassilly, a Republican who has opposed measures to replace the song in the past, said he is keeping an open mind this year about possibly changing some of the song without a complete replacement.
"I'm more receptive to that concept," Cassilly said. "I mean, we retain the history, the heritage."
Del. Kirill Reznik, a Democrat, is sponsoring a bill to repeal the song and require the state to create a commission to find a new one. While the variety of proposals could complicate a bill's passage this year, he's hopeful.
"To be honest with you, I don't know if this year is actually the year," Reznik said. "I'm hoping this year is the year, because I think a lot of people are getting sick and tired of having to have this conversation year after year. It would be nice to get this issue off our table."

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BANGOR, Maine (AP) - The director of a Maine day care says cookies dropped off by a parent as a Valentine's Day treat left about dozen staff members feeling high.
Police were called to the Watch Me Shine day care in Bangor on Wednesday and seized the cookies for testing.
Day care director Tiffany Nowicki tells the Bangor Daily News that the cookies were left on a staff room table. No children ate any.
Two workers reported feeling woozy. About 10 others reported less intense symptoms.
Police say the parent who brought them in could be charged if the cookies test positive for drugs.
Nowicki says the day care has always barred adults from sharing food with children, but will now prohibit bringing in outside food for children or staff.

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LAS VEGAS (AP) - A 66-year-old Las Vegas man who reported his car had been stolen after arranging to have it destroyed has been sentenced to one to three years in prison for insurance fraud.
Daniel Harris was convicted earlier of filing false claims with American Banker's Insurance and Hartford Insurance.
Harris reported in 2015 that his 2008 PT Cruiser had been burglarized by a thief who made off with a laptop computer, an Apple iPod Touch and dozens of compact discs. Nearly a year later, he claimed the car had been stolen.
U.S. District Judge Carolyn Ellsworth also ordered Harris to pay $600 in restitution to Hartford for rental expenses and $750 to the state for investigative costs.
Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt says it should serve as a warning to others they'll be prosecuted if they try to dupe insurance companies.

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Researchers are set to discuss their efforts to determine whether human bones recovered from a Cape Cod shipwreck are those of the infamous pirate Samuel "Black Sam" Bellamy.
The Whydah Pirate Museum in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, says it also will publicly display the bones for the first time and showcase what they believe to be Bellamy's pistol Monday.
The objects were encased in a hardened mass of sand and stone pulled from the Whydah Gally shipwreck several years ago.
The museum has enlisted forensic scientists to compare DNA from the bones to a sample given by one of Bellamy's living descendants.
The Whydah went down in stormy seas in 1717, killing most of its crew and leaving its treasure on the ocean floor. The wreck was discovered in 1984.

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(Huffington Post) Sometimes plane travel really stinks.
A flight from Dubai to Amsterdam had to make an emergency landing in Vienna after a fight broke out because one of the passengers wouldn't stop breaking wind.
The fart-induced fracas happened Feb. 11 aboard Transavia Airlines Flight HV6902 when two men sitting next to an apparently very flatulent man raised a stink about his repeated gas attacks, according to Fox News.
When the alleged perpetrator didn't stop, his disgusted seatmates reportedly complained to the airline crew, who apparently did nothing.
Instead, the captain issued a warning to the two complainants, accusing them of noisy and aggressive behavior and making threats, according to the NL Times.
When the freedom-from-flatulence fighters wouldn't stop griping about their fellow passenger, a fight broke out on the plane, according to the Dutch language newspaper De Telegraaf.
The pilots then made an emergency stop in Vienna and removed the complainants, but apparently not the farting man. Two women sitting in the same row as the angry men were also forced off the plane as well.
All four people reportedly shared Dutch and Moroccan ancestry, but the two women claim they were simply sitting in the same row as the men involved with the incident.
The women are now taking the Dutch budget airline to court, according to the Metro.
"We had nothing to do with the whole disturbance. We distance ourselves from that. Do they sometimes think that all Moroccans cause problems? That's why we do not let it sit," one of the women said, according to De Telegraaf. "We had no idea who these boys were, we just had the bad luck to be in the same row and we didn't do anything."
"All I will say is that the crew were really provocative and stirred things up," she added.
None of the passengers kicked off the plane were arrested because they had not broken any Austrian laws. However, they have been banned from flying Transavia Airlines in the future.
HuffPost reached out to Transavia Airlines, which did not immediately respond. The airline did offer this statement to De Telegraaf that was translated by the NL Times:
Our crew must ensure a safe flight. If passengers pose a risk, they immediately intervene. Our people are trained for that. They know very well where the boundaries are. Transavia therefore stands squarely behind the cabin crew and the pilots.
The airline has reportedly filed a police report about the incident in the Netherlands said it was "open to a conversation with these women."

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Police have arrested a woman after an abusive note was left on an ambulance demanding it park somewhere else during a 999 call.
Paramedics were left disgusted by the note, which stated 'I couldn't give a s**t if the whole street collapsed', following an incident in Tunstall.
The crew was also verbally abused while attempting to deal with the incident, which occurred at around midday yesterday.
Now a 26-year-old Tunstall woman has been arrested for public order offences.
Chief Inspector John Owen, commander of Staffordshire Police's Stoke-on-Trent North policing team, tweeted about the incident.
He added: "We will not tolerate abuse or intimidation of our emergency services. This kind of behaviour is totally unacceptable and we will take appropriate action against offenders.
"The arrest relates to matters of verbal abuse that could constitute offences under the Public Order Act. This is not solely about the note."
A Staffordshire Police spokesman confirmed the force took action after seeing details reported on Twitter.
The woman remains in police custody and enquiries are on-going.

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Celia Twiford turned around to flush when, "plop," her Rolex watch slipped off her wrist and dropped straight into the flushing toilet.
"You know when you get off the toilet and you turn around... it was already too late," Twiford said of the moment she realized her Rolex was gone. The $8,500 watch was down the drain.
After calling two plumbers and the city of Chino Hills, the precious gift she had received from her husband Jason was nowhere to be found.
Eighteen months later, Carlos Diaz, a Chino Hills city worker, miraculously found the watch amidst debris and muck that had collected near a manhole a mile down the hill from the Twifords' home.
Diaz had coincidentally been on the initial November 2016 call about the missing Rolex and knew exactly who to call: "The moment I saw it, I knew it was her watch because there aren't too many Rolexes floating up out of the water."
Diaz met with the Twifords on Friday to reunite the precious Rolex with its rightful owner.
Despite being lost among the Chino Hills sewage system for nearly a year and a half, after a good polishing from Diaz, the watch emerged fully-functioning, shining, and missing just one stone.

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EVERSON, Wash. (AP) - A Washington state man is in hot water after police say he stole a van containing $10,000 worth of frozen bull semen. The Bellingham Herald reports that the 39-year-old Everson man was booked into Whatcom County Jail on Saturday after police pulled him over in a van belonging to West Select Sires, a cattle-breeding company.
Everson Police Chief Daniel MacPhee says the van had been stolen earlier in the day.
MacPhee also said it required repeated commands to get the driver out of the vehicle and that he resisted arrest by trying to prevent police from handcuffing him. No one was hurt in the incident.

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