Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, April 17th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, April 17th

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CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s top mufti has issued a fatwa, or a religious decree, saying that buying Facebook “likes” is prohibited under Islam because it’s a form of fraud and deception.
Grand Mufti Shawki Allam regularly issues all sorts of fatwas, usually in response to questions by Muslims seeking religious guidance in matters related to even the most trivial issues.
The questions are asked of the Dar al-Ifa, the Sunni Muslim institution in charge of religious rulings, mainly based on the Muslim holy book of Quran and the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad.
The mufti posted on the institution’s Facebook page earlier this week that it is “religiously prohibited” to pay someone to click a “like” on a promotion.
Allam says “it’s deceptive,” citing Muhammad’s saying, “He who deceives is not of us.”

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U.S. Customs officials discovered a passenger at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York attempting to smuggle six pounds of cocaine hidden inside a liquor bottle.
Officials reported Jamaican citizen Stefisha Miller had landed at JFK from Kingston, Jamaica's capital, on Sunday when U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers found two bottles of Bailey's Irish Cream in her duty-free box -- and one of the bottles contained a bag of white powder.
The powder tested positive for cocaine, officers confirmed.
The cocaine seized weighed six pounds and had an estimated street value of $110,000, authorities reported.
"The smuggling of illicit drugs poses a significant threat to our nation, and CBP does its part in keeping these drugs off our streets," Francis J. Russo, Acting Director of CBP's New York Field Operations, said. "As America's unified border security agency, our employees are determined to protect the public from these substances."
Miller may face federal narcotics smuggling charges.
Last month another Jamaican citizen was caught at JFK with nearly nine pounds of cocaine taped to his legs.

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(Huffington Post) It's like something from a Monty Python sketch: Portions of a 16th-century Scottish castle were recently closed to the public due to a "very angry badger."
The tunnel at Craignethan Castle was closed last week because of the animal, said Historic Scotland, which manages the property. The badger apparently wandered in from the nearby forest, per the BBC.
It's not clear what the animal did to leave the impression that it was "very angry."
Observers on Twitter suggested feeding mushrooms, peanuts and peanut butter to the badger, but cameras sent in on Saturday revealed that Historic Scotland's cat food plot may have worked, as the creature appeared to have fled the scene. 
However, the badger dug through loose soil and stonework, leaving behind a mess, the Scotsman reported. Although the tunnel will stay shuttered while it's cleaned, the rest of the castle will be open to tourists. 
Built in 1530, Craignethan is noted for its fortifications, which were built to protect it from artillery and considered ahead of their time. Although a rampart was demolished in 1579, its ruins remain on the grounds. 
Badgers are Scotland's largest wild carnivores. While they are generally not aggressive toward humans, a wounded or cornered animal may attack ? and in a tunnel such as the one at Craignethan, a badger encountering a human could indeed feel cornered. 

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(Huffington Post) Residents in the Dutch village of Jelsum aren't singing the praises of recent changes to a nearby road.
Rumble strips were recently laid on the main drag in a strategic manner so that the road "sings" out the anthem of the Friesland region, a northwest area of the Netherlands, when a car drives along them at 40 mph, according to Reuters.
Sietske Poepjes, a local minister for infrastructure and cultural affairs, said the road was designed to promote the city of Leeuwarden, this year's European Capital of Culture, and also test out a new paint for roads.
"It works amazingly well. You can hear the melody," she told the BBC.
But what may be a novelty for drivers has been sheer torture to people who live near the road, like Sijtze Jansma.
"It's simple, the Frisian national anthem is fun, but not 24 hours a day," Jansma told the Dutch-language news station RTL News. "It really makes you deaf, you can not sit outside anymore, you do not sleep at night, and that vuvuzela whimper makes us crazy."
Resident Ria Jansma said the road inspired some taxis to go across the lines as quickly as possible.
"We had the anthem played all night at high speed," she said to Reuters.
The Friesland authority has taken note of the complaints and will remove the rumble strips later this week. 

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April 17 (UPI) -- Wildlife handlers were called to an office in Thailand after a large monitor lizard dropped through the ceiling and landed on a worker's desk.
Kamonwan Buachum, 38, who works in the accounts department of a company in Chachoegsao, said she and her coworkers heard something moving inside the ceiling moments before the huge lizard fell through and landed on her desk.
Kamonwan said she screamed and ran from the lizard.
A video filmed at the scene shows reptile handlers working to remove the lizard from a paper storage room, where it had fled after falling through the ceiling.
The rescuers said the monitor lizard was later released back into the wild.

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April 17 (UPI) -- A Florida deli owner said he spotted a loose monkey twice in one day and captured video of the primate running across a parking lot.
Shlomi Ezra, owner of a deli in Aventura, said he was checking on his business Monday morning when he caught a glimpse of the monkey.
"When I looked to my left, I saw a tail or something over here climbing," he told WSVN-TV of the moment he saw the monkey in a tree near the deli.
Ezra said he was not able to get his phone out in time to capture a photo of the animal, so he had a hard time convincing friends that the sighting occurred.
"My friend said, 'Yeah, you probably saw a cheetah.' They start making fun of me," he said.
Ezra had some proof of the sighting about 30 minutes later, when he captured video of it running across the parking lot of the Lubavitch Aventura South Synagogue.
"I said, 'Monkey! Monkey!' No one paid attention," he said.
The simian is believed to be the same animal sighted twice last month in North Miami Beach.
Animal experts said the vervet monkey likely wandered away from a monkey colony in Dania Beach after reaching the age of sexual maturity, when the African animals commonly wander away from their social groups in search of other monkey colonies to join.
Experts said vervet monkeys have exceptional urban mapping abilities and the wandering primate will likely return to its family in Dania Beach on its own.

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April 17 (UPI) -- Police in Georgia shared security camera footage of a GameStop store burglar who tried to conceal his face with an unusual disguise -- a clear plastic wrapper.
The St. Marys Police Department posted video to Facebook showing security camera footage from the Thursday night burglary.
The video shows the male suspect wearing the plastic wrapper from a package of bottled water over his head, completely failing to hide his face with the clear plastic.
Police are asking members of the public for help identifying the "craftily disguised gent."
"You can help us catch him, once you stop laughing," police wrote.

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April 17 (UPI) -- A California sheriff's office shared photos from a pickup truck where deputies released a bear that had locked itself inside and ransacked the vehicle.
The El Dorado County Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post that deputies stationed in Tahoe responded to a home Monday where a resident woke to discover a bear had closed itself inside their pickup truck overnight.
The post included photos of deputies releasing the animal from the vehicle as well as snapshots of the mess the "very angry bear" left behind inside the truck.
"Another very important reason to lock your vehicles up at night, particularly in bear country, is that bears are very adept at entering unlocked vehicles looking for food," the sheriff's office said. "If you are lucky, they will rummage around and leave your car relatively unharmed. But if you are unlucky as in this case, and the bear gets locked inside your car ... well, let's just say I don't think this will buff out."

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April 17 (UPI) -- A trained bear helped start a soccer game in Russia when it was handed a ball to pass along to an official.
A video of the stunt Saturday at a third-tier Russian Professional Football League soccer match in Pyatigorsk shows the muzzled bear being led out in front of a crowd.
The bear stands on its hind legs and is handed a soccer ball by its handler. The animal then passes the ball to a waiting referee.
The bear was then escorted from the field by its handler.
The team that arranged the bear stunt claimed the animal was going to perform a similar service at the 2018 World Cup, but FIFA officials said no such plans have been made.
The stunt elicited sharp condemnation from animal welfare groups.
"In addition to being inhumane and utterly out of touch, using a bear as a captive servant to deliver a football is downright dangerous," Elisa Allen, director of animal rights group PETA, told the BBC.
Brian da Cal, country director of charity Four Paws UK, said forcing bears to perform can be stressful for the animals.
"Bears are wild animals and as such have very specific and complex needs," he said. "Being chained up, muzzled and forced to perform unnatural acts in front of large, rowdy crowds of people causes tremendous stress and can have an untold impact on these animals, both psychological and physical."

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DYERSVILLE, Iowa  —  Recent weather may not have made conditions outside ideal for landscaping, but one field in Iowa was getting some needed repairs on Monday.
In January, police say a man drove through the iconic Field of Dreams in Dyersville. The trip over the baseball diamond tore up the sod and destroyed the sprinkler system. Baseball players from across the state, some from minor leagues, and others still in school worked together to help fix the field.
"It's like an instant connection. You can go up and talk. Were all here for the same goal. Its pretty special," said one volunteer. "The silver lining to a bad situation with vandalism is that everyone realizes how important this is and how hard we will work to save it to make sure it's here for generations to come."
The tools and materials used to repair the field were donated by local landscaping businesses.


 

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