Mad Minute stories from Friday, April 27th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Friday, April 27th

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MERIDEN, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut police have charged a man they say was trying to sell venomous snakes.
State environmental police on Thursday charged 21-year-old Cameron DeFrances with multiple counts of illegal possession of wild animals and reckless endangerment after finding seven live snakes in his Meriden home. A viper, several cobras and two dead snakes were discovered.
State officials got a search warrant after getting a tip from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that DeFrances was selling snakes through social media.
The serpents were seized and transported to a reptile facility with the help of a qualified specialist.
DeFrances was freed on $1,000 bond pending a May 10 court date. A listed home phone number for DeFrances was out of service Friday.

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April 27 (UPI) -- A Colorado Uber driver said a scratch-off lottery ticket he received as a tip from one of his passengers led to his winning $140,000.
The Colorado Lottery said the Uber driver, identified as Lakewood resident James P., said a driver gave him a $5 Super Special Ultimate Bingo Scratch ticket as a tip and the ticket ended up winning him $30, which he used to buy six more scratch-off tickets.
"I kept winning these smaller amounts and just kept rolling it over and over into more tickets," James said. "I thought to myself, 'I'm never going to hit the end of these tickets'. It just kept going and going."
He said the first win led to a six-week winning streak that culminated in a Super Special Ultimate Bingo Scratch ticket winning him a $140,000 top prize on Wednesday.
James visited lottery headquarters on Thursday to collect his winnings. He said he hopes to be able to tell the passenger about the good luck that came of the unusual tip.
"I very rarely get the same passenger multiple times, but I'd picked up this guy a few times," James said. "I haven't been able to find him yet and tell him about this, but I hope I do."
The driver said he plans to use some of his winnings to pay his parents back for money they loaned him in the past, while the rest will go toward upgrading the vehicle he uses to drive for Uber and Lyft.
 
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April 27 (UPI) -- A pair of Australian snake catchers responded to the side of a road to rescue a red-bellied black snake with its head stuck in a beverage can.
The team from Snake Catchers Adelaide said they responded Wednesday to a call from a Macclesfield resident who found the snake in a road with its head stuck in the narrow opening of a can.
The resident moved the snake to the side of the road, where it was found by the snake catchers.
A video of the rescue shows one of the reptile handlers using scissors to cut through the can and free the thirsty snake.
"After we located the snake and cut him out of the can, we released him there on the spot. He made his way down a tunnel and straight into a crack in the ground," the snake catchers said.

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April 27 (UPI) -- New York subway riders said an ill-timed paint job at a Brooklyn station led to yellow footprints spreading around the station -- and inside trains.
Commuters shared photos on social media showing the footprints that resulted from the paint used to put yellow track-side lines on the ground still being wet during peak riding hours.
"Someone just put down a fresh coat of yellow paint on the subway platform edge... at 9:30 on a Wednesday morning," Josh Boerman wrote on Twitter. "This platform is going to be a mess of yellow footprints by the end of the day. What is going on."
He said the paint job was poorly planned.
"People just don't think. They're not thinking about the consequences their decisions are going to have, and we've ended up with a transit system that reflects those priorities," he told WCBS-TV. "It's incredibly frustrating."
Photos snapped by commuters show the yellow footprints spread to inside the trains.
"It's a hazard by me. Being a nursing aide, I think it's very hazardous for people to walk through wet paint, because they're asking for a lawsuit," subway rider Rosezena Brown-Matos said. "They can slip through it, they can fall, they can fall on the track. There's so much going on."
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority blamed the wet paint on humidity.
"We successfully do paint work day in and day out at our 472 stations without any issues whatsoever," the MTA said in a statement. "This is an extremely rare example of very humid weather slowing the drying process after off-hours work and extra care will be taken to make sure it doesn't happen again."

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April 27 (UPI) -- Police in Oregon said a suspect led police on a chase while riding a stolen motorcycle with a vanity license plate reading "XFELON."
The Springfield Police Department said Brock Antonie Williams, 35, was recognized Wednesday by an officer in the parking lot of an Albertson's store.
The officer determined Williams, a convicted felon, had a warrant for his arrest on a parole violation related to unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, but Williams sped off a Ducati motorcycle while the officer waited to be joined by a patrol officer in a marked car.
The officer followed Williams in an unmarked car and made note of the "XFELON" license plate, which bore expired North Dakota tags.
The patrol officer joined the pursuit and Williams fled at speeds of between 85 and 100 mph down side streets until he reached a dead end and got off the vehicle.
Police arrested Williams, who claimed he hadn't been riding the motorcycle. Police discovered the bike had been reported stolen in June 2017.
The XFELON plate had not been on the motorcycle at the time of the theft, "leading us to believe whoever stole the bike put the plate on it," Springfield Police Lt. Scott McKee told the Springfield Register-Guard newspaper. "Since these guys make license plates in prison, you would think he would be a little more creative."

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April 27 (UPI) -- Police in Ontario said officers wrestled with a runaway pig near a busy road before calling in backup from a livestock transporter.
South Simcoe Police said the pig was spotted Tuesday morning wandering along the 10th Sideroad in Innisfil and officers responded to attempt to corral the loose porker.
Police said they were concerned the pig could pose a danger to drivers.
"The problem is when people try to avoid these animals that can be just as tragic -- trying swerve around a 200 pounds pig -- as it can be running into a 200 pounds pig," South Simcoe Police Sgt. Todd Ferrier told CTV News.
Constable Gerry Crane ended up covered in mud as he attempted to wrestle the pig into the back of a patrol vehicle.
"We tried getting her in the back of a car, but she was having nothing to do with that. I can honestly say I under estimated the power of a pig," Crane said.
Livestock transporter John Hodgson was summoned to help load the pig into a trailer.
"A lot of police wouldn't even get close to it, but they were able to get a rope on it. We just had little short ropes so everybody had to be right there," Hodgson said.
Kyle Gray, the pig's owner, said he will be keeping the animal, named Quasimodo, at a neighbor's farm until his pig pen fence is repaired.
"No pigs or police officers were injured during this lengthy and unique apprehension," police said.

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A Milwaukee-area bar called "Walk Her Inn, Drag Her Out" is stirring controversy in the #MeToo era because critics say the name promotes sexual assault.
Milwaukee resident Paress Huebner took a photo of the bar's sign and posted it on social media, Fox 6 reported.  
Another photo of the logo shows a cartoon caveman dragging a woman by her hair.
"A friend of mine showed it to me a month ago and I said, 'This exists? It's 2018. This is insane,'" Huebner told Fox 6.
The bar reportedly has been a neighborhood staple for more than 30 years in West Allis, Wis., a suburb about 7 miles west of Milwaukee. But Huebner said she believes both the name and logo need to be changed.
"It's, at the very least, unnecessary, at the most, offensive. For whatever reason, I was like, 'Let's put it on Facebook,' and something needs to be done and said because they just crossed the line," Huebner said.
Many people who commented on the post believe the name suggests acceptance of mistreatment of women, OnMilwaukee.com reported.
"I think some people will say it's a joke, but a lot of people will take it for what it is — and that's rape culture," Michael Reece said, according to Fox 6.
"Having something that implies any nonconsensual activity right when walking in the door is very irresponsible," resident Christine Nell told WDJT-TV.
Diane and Kristian Plumeri, husband and wife, have owned the bar for nine years, Fox 6 reported.
"If it is offensive, I apologize, but it's been that way for over 30 years," Diane Plumeri said.
They said previous owners added the words "drag her out" to the name in 1985, and that they saw no reason to change it.
Kristian told Fox 6 he approached his wife a few years ago about changing the name, but she was the one "adamant" about keeping it. They said they're going to have a conversation, but have not committed to any changes.
"I just don't feel someone's right to be offended is more important than my right to own a business," Diane told WJDT-TV. "Come on in and check it out. If you find we promote raping and drug use and beating on women, that's not the promotion here nor has it ever been," she said. 
West Allis Mayor Dan Devine told OnMilwaukee.com that it's a free-speech issue, and "communities can't regulate when it comes to names and sign."
"This is the perfect example of why you need to spend your money in businesses that you want to see in your community," Devine said.

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(BBC) Amelia Eldred from Tamworth, in Staffordshire, was diagnosed with bone cancer in her left leg last year and had surgery to amputate the limb.
A rare procedure called rotationplasty was used by doctors at Royal Orthopaedic Hospital, in Birmingham, to reattach the lower part of the leg backwards to allow the ankle joint to work as a knee joint.
It means the seven-year-old will be able to have a prosthetic limb fitted and one day be able to continue her favourite hobby, dancing.

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HUBEI PROVINCE, CHINA - China is investing in new technology that gives a brisk warning to potential jaywalkers... a splash of water to the face to make them think twice about crossing the street.
Some of China's major cities are using the high-tech system to keep pedestrians out of harm's way.  Hubei Province has yellow posts equipped with lasers and motion-sensors to detect jaywalkers when the crossing light is still red.
If they try to cross, water shoots out of the post, delivering a wet reminder that crossing the street is not permitted and is dangerous.
In Beijing, there is a large screen warning that cameras are watching pedestrians.  It advises them that if they violate the law they'll be sprayed with water in the face.
If pedestrians still continue to jaywalk the pedestrian monitors have facial recognition technology.  That can potentially be used to upload photos to the police to identify suspects.
China is hoping this technology can eliminate the country's jaywalking problem.
According to the World Health Organization, China had more than 260,000 road traffic deaths in 2013.

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April 26 (UPI) -- A British Columbia man shared video of a moose that wandered into his garage to lick the road salt that accumulated on his pickup truck.
Tab Baker posted a video to Facebook showing the moose standing in his Prince George garage and licking the side of his pickup truck.
"Hey moose," Baker says, capturing the animal's attention.
Baker opens the second door of the two-car garage and the sound apparently spooks the moose, which exits through the previously-opened door.
"OK moose, time to go!" Baker yells as the moose stands in his driveway. "Get out of here, carry on!"
The moose eventually saunters off out of view.


 

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