Mad Minute stories from Thursday, March 29th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Thursday, March 29th

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa man threatened by city officials with legal action for saying on a website that his hometown smelled like "rancid dog food" has won a free-speech lawsuit.
Josh Harms, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa, filed suit in U.S. District Court earlier this month asking a judge to block Sibley officials from suing him. City officials said they'd sue if he didn't stop criticizing the odor problem from an animal food processing plant and talking with reporters about it.
On Thursday a judge approved a permanent injunction prohibiting city threats. The city agrees to pay Harms $6,500 in damages and $20,000 in legal fees.
The city promises to hold First Amendment training and will not prevent Harms from launching a website under the address www.sibleystinks.com.

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BOSTON (AP) - The case of the unknown Massachusetts high court justice has been solved.
Nearly two months after the Supreme Judicial Court appealed to the public for help identifying the man whose portrait hangs outside the chief justice's chambers, he has a name: Lemuel Shaw, who served as chief justice from 1830 until 1860.
The court received more than 40 "informed guesses" on the identity of the mystery man, but Assistant Chief Court Officer Keith Downer's nifty detective work was what cracked the case.
Among other things, Downer performed bright yellow and white light tests that revealed the loop script initials "LS" on the wood panel attached to the canvas, court officials say.
"The remarkable level of interest among members of the public and over 40 submissions received is an example of civic engagement at its best," Chief Justice Ralph Gants said in a statement.
Court officials say they believe the portrait was painted sometime before or around the time Shaw was appointed to the high court in 1830. While they say they can't be 100 percent sure they've solved the high court mystery, they're confident Shaw's the man.
Shaw, who was the father-in-law of "Moby Dick" author Herman Melville, also served on the Massachusetts state Senate and House of Representatives and as a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1820. He was also a selectman for Boston and drafted the act of incorporation and charter for the city.
Shaw died less than a year after he retired from the court in August 1860.
When the court turned to the public for help in February, officials said they believed he was an associate justice and had all-but ruled out that he was a chief justice. Court officials had even tried to run the portrait through the Google program that matches a persons' likeness to a painting, with no luck.
Shaw's name will be attached to the portrait next month. The 10 people who correctly guessed his identity are being invited to the ceremony and will get a tour of the John Adams Courthouse.
 
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QUEBEC CITY (AP) - A Canadian teenager who purchased her first lottery ticket to celebrate her 18th birthday hit the jackpot and will receive $1,000 Canadian a week for the rest of her life.
Charlie Lagarde was celebrating with a bottle of champagne and a $4 scratch-off ticket earlier this month when she hit the grand prize in the Gagnant a Vie lottery. The prize would be worth just over $775 per week in American dollars.
She was joined by family and friends when she collected the first payment on Monday.
She told lottery officials that she hopes to study photography.

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An unemployed Brit says his ex-girlfriend must be "gutted" that he's scooped up more than $13 million in lottery winnings - just over a month after the two broke up, according to a report.
Paul Long, 55, of Wickford, Essex, split amicably with his partner of five years, Julie West, 52, when he moved out of their shared home on Feb. 1, The Mirror reported.
Then on Saturday, Long won about £9.3 million - just over $13 million - off a "Lucky Dip" ticket, according to the report.
"Let's be honest, if I was with someone and you've just split up, and they go and win £9 million on the lottery, you're going to be gutted, aren't you?" Long told The Mirror.
Long insisted, however, that West won't be completely cut off from his new fortune.

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Nov. 15 (UPI) -- A group of undercover Detroit police posing as drug dealers tried to arrest another group of undercover police posing as drug buyers in a mishap that resulted in a brawl between more than two dozen armed officers.
"This is probably one of the most embarrassing things I've seen in this department," Detroit Police Chief James Craig said Monday, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The incident occurred on Nov. 9 when two officers from Detroit's 12th Precinct were posing as drug dealers in order to arrest buyers, according to WJBK-TV. Two buyers did arrive to the drug house, but they were undercover police officers from Detroit's 11th district. The officers did not know each other.
More officers from the 11th district arrived to serve a search warrant and that's "when it started to go terribly wrong," Craig said.
Body camera footage obtained by WXYZ-TV shows the two groups of police officers yelling, shoving and throwing punches at each other.
"They appeared to be like Keystone cops," Craigs said, referring to the fictional police officers depicted in comedic silent films.
Craig said an internal investigation has been launched to understand how the two precincts made the potentially fatal mistake.
In 1986, two Detroit police officers were killed in a similar incident.
"Thank God no one got seriously hurt or even worse, killed," retired assistant police chief Steve Dolunt said.
The Wayne County prosecutors office will also investigate to determine if criminal charges will be filed.
A resident of the neighborhood where the police brawl occurred had a suggestion for how police can further prevent incidents like this one.
"You've got to have to have more communication, I guess," the resident said.

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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - An artist who projected an image of a gigantic eye gazing over Main Street in New Hampshire's capital city is shutting it down after two years.
Artist Tom Devaney created the projection of his right eye from his studio in Concord (KAHN'-kard). A few other eyes made guest appearances.
Devaney tells the Concord Monitor he's making space for new works.
The project caught the eye of passers-by and became quite the conversation piece. Devaney says it was born from 3D video mapping techniques he was working on. Video of the blue-green eye moving and blinking were projected onto a foam board structure.
Devaney says he could operate the eye remotely from home. He also had a camera in the studio to see who was looking at it. He's holding a Say Goodbye to the Concord Eye send-off Thursday.

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(BBC) It was supposed to be the icing on the wedding cake - a majestic owl swooping in to deliver the all-important rings.
But fairytale nuptials ended with a best man set upon and floored - and guests erupting in laughter.
The scenes at Wrexham couple Jeni Arrowsmith and Mark Wood's wedding in Tarporley, Cheshire, were captured on camera and video.
"It was one of those moments I'll never forget," said wedding photographer Stacey Oliver.
She caught the moment the owl was released to fly to the waiting best man to retrieve the rings.
But chaos ensued, when another of the groom's best men seated in the front row pointed at the owl.
"The owl sees it as a sign to fly to the hand. The owl has just dived in and hit the guy - who is terrified of birds. He fell off his chair," Ms Oliver, who captured the exact moment on camera, told BBC Wales' Jason Mohammad Show.
"I just instantly knew what was going to happen, I could see it was going to happen."
But newly-wed bride Jeni said she and her husband both saw the funny side of events.
She said: "I was chuckling that much inside that my stomach was hurting.
"Everyone was absolutely hysterical."
So much, in fact, that the registrar carrying out the wedding at the Peckforton Castle venue had to ask the guests to calm down.
But the laughter continued after the ceremony.
"It made the wedding because we were all talking about it all night," said the bride, who has also been enjoying the surprise fame sparked by the incident.
"My phone hasn't stopped - I've had loads of people calling me. It's been wild," she added.

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March 29 (UPI) -- A mother and son taking a walk on a Florida beach made an unusual and fascinating discovery -- a partial hull from an apparent 18th century shipwreck.
Julia Turner said she and her son were walking along the shore in Ponte Vedra Beach, near the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve, when they came across the 47-1/2-foot piece of wreckage.
"We were going to look for conch shells and shark teeth, and we find a shipwreck," Turner told WJXT-TV. "Pretty special."
Chuck Meide, an archaeologist with the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, brought a team of researchers to the scene Thursday to study the hull, which he said is well preserved and bears Roman numeral markings on the wood.
Researchers said they aren't being allowed to move the wreckage because it is the property of the state of Florida. They said they trying to study the wreckage as much as possible and are considering attempting to create a 3D model from their photos before it is reclaimed by the sea.

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March 29 (UPI) -- Doctors at a Houston hospital shared video of a woman playing the flute while on the operating table during a brain surgery procedure.
The Texas Medical Center said Anna Henry, 63, was undergoing a procedure known as "deep brain stimulation" in the hopes of treating a condition known as essential tremor, which caused Henry's hands to shake and prevented her from doing activities including eating soup with a spoon and playing her beloved instrument.
Doctors said the procedure involves implanting tiny electrodes in the brain that deliver a constant electric current. They said the science behind how the procedure works is still being studied, but it has been found to be effective for treating symptoms of conditions including essential tremor and Parkinson's disease.
The surgeons had Henry bring her flute, an instrument she has practiced since she was 11 but had to give up in recent years due to her shaking hands. They shared a video of her playing the instrument during the procedure to test if the electric current was helping.
"Deep brain stimulation works amazingly well," said Henry's neurologist, Mya Schiess, M.D., of the Mischer Neuroscience Institute at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and UTHealth. "If you have a tremor that is truly interfering with hand function, lifestyle, head or voice, honestly, there isn't a medicine out there that's going to really put you in a better state."

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(Sky News) Vets have saved the life of a huge snake who devoured a slipper as a late-night snack in Australia.
Extraordinary X-ray scans show the footwear lodged inside the carpet python.
Snake catchers Norman and Sally Hill were called after an elderly man placed his slippers beside his bed before going to sleep, only to realise one had gone missing the next morning.
Days later, the snake was spotted inside the property and the handlers managed to get hold of the animal before spotting the shoe-sized bulge in its body.
Astonishing images which showed the snake before and after a life-saving operation were posted by vets on Facebook.
"You can't make this stuff up folks," they wrote. "This wild, coastal carpet python, was brought into the clinic by a local snake catcher after it was found in a home having ingested a slipper.
"This made for one of the most impressive radiographs I have seen. Surgery was performed under general anaesthetic to remove the foreign object, with a procedure called a coeliotomy and gastrotomy.
"The stomach was closed in two layers, the body wall muscle was closed and surgical staples were used for the skin (an 18cm incision). The snake was given fluids, anti-inflammatories and painkillers. He woke up well and is off to for rehabilitation in a couple of days."
Ms Hill said the snake got hold of the slipper during the night on Tuesday, days before it was spotted on Friday.
She told ABC: "The man was going to bed, and normally he puts his slippers under his bed. What happened was he woke up Wednesday morning and there was a missing slipper.
"They were looking for the slipper, and couldn't find it anywhere. Someone thought maybe a possum took it, so they were looking around for a possum, and that's when they discovered the snake days later."
The snake catcher said the python may have been drawn to the slipper because of a rat or possum crawling over it or urinating on it, or even contained within it.
She added: "This is the first encounter we've had with a snake that's eaten a slipper, or anything strange. Normally it's possum, or even a cat, or a dog, or a chicken. But a slipper is a new one."

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