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Weird National Briefs (05/17/2017)

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Sting operation

GREAT FALLS, Montana - A Montana beekeeper has recovered hives that were stolen from him in California, thanks to an agricultural sting operation.

Lloyd Cunniff of Choteau reported 488 hives stolen in January, after he had transported them to California for the almond pollination season.

A tip led Fresno County authorities to find stolen hives worth $170,000 in a rented bee nursery space, a cow pasture and hidden in a drainage along a freeway.

Fresno County Detective Anders Solis, member of the county’s agriculture crimes task force, says there were 10 victims in seven California counties in all.

The Great Falls Tribune reports Cunniff got most of his bees back last Sunday. He says he is keeping the recovered hives in a separate field in case they are infected with disease or mites.

TME – We assume this was first reported on Buzzfeed.

Cake crime

JONESBORO, Ark. - Police in Arkansas have arrested two people for stealing a 16-foot trailer that contained thousands of dollars’ worth of Little Debbie snack cakes.

Police say the trailer was discovered missing early Wednesday from outside a storage unit in Jonesboro, about 115 miles northeast of Little Rock. According to a police report, the trailer belonged to a Little Debbie salesman and contained $5,000 worth of snacks.

Jonesboro police said the trailer was located in neighboring Mississippi County that night during a traffic stop. A police report says none of the snack cakes were touched. Two female suspects have been taken into custody.

The trailer’s owner, Roy Frazier, tells Jonesboro television station KAIT he’s thankful his property was returned and that he’s bought new locks for the trailer.

TME - $5,000 worth? That’s like four million snack cakes.

Oh yeah!

ROCKY RIVER, Ohio - Police in suburban Cleveland say a half-naked man intentionally crashed his car into a closed convenience store to get beer, injuring himself and a store employee.

Rocky River police say the 45-year-old driver was wearing nothing from the waist down when he crashed through a store wall early Sunday and told the worker he needed beer.

Police say the man barricaded himself in a beer cooler and told police to shoot him, but they subdued him with a stun device.

The driver was taken to a hospital, as was the store employee, who suffered leg and chest injuries that weren’t considered critical.

The driver has been charged with impaired driving.

Police say the worker was fortunate that a deli counter was between him and the car, preventing more serious injuries.

TME – He’s basically the Kool-Aid Man, only full of beer.

Scorpion scare

HOUSTON - A United flight from Houston to Ecuador was delayed after a scorpion was spotted aboard.

United says Flight 1035 returned to the gate Thursday night after a scorpion “reportedly emerged from a customer’s clothing.” Paramedics examined the man and determined that he hadn’t been stung. It’s unclear whether a scorpion was found.

United says it found a new aircraft for the flight and all passengers were given a meal voucher for the inconvenience.

The flight eventually got underway 3 1/2 hours late.

Another man was stung by a scorpion on a United flight from Houston to Calgary, Alberta, last month.

United has been under fire since a passenger was violently dragged off an overbooked flight by aviation police in Chicago on April 9.

TME – At least it wasn’t a snake.

What’s in a name?

PHILADELPHIA - A starving and abandoned miniature donkey rescued from a Pennsylvania farm had a little secret for animal welfare workers: She was pregnant.

Sadie and a male mini-donkey named Romeo were rescued from a Huntingdon County farm in January, along with a cow, two beagles, chickens and roosters.

Workers at the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals say they had no idea when Sadie was due but she gave birth to a male foal on Sunday.

The baby has health complications likely caused by the mother’s treatment at the farm.

The PSPCA is holding a naming contest to raise money for the foal’s medical care. For $5, the public can cast a vote and be entered for a chance to meet the baby and Sadie.

Name choices include Lil’ Sebastian, Georgie, Van, J.R. and Lucky.

TME – Five bucks says the name winds up being “Donkey McDonkeyface.”

Fowl play

HOPKINTON, R.I. - A flock of 70 chicks has safely returned to roost at a Rhode Island farm.

WLNE-TV reports that $300 worth of chicks and equipment needed to care for them was stolen from Simplicity Farms in Hopkinton.

Owner Lynn Rubin had called the police and shared information about the theft on Facebook. Rubin says many local residents shared the Facebook post.

She says people “were just offended as I was” that someone would steal the birds.

Rubin says one resident tipped off police after hearing a young man was keeping chicks in his garage.

An officer returned to the farm Sunday night with a patrol car full of chirping chickens.

Rubin says the officer “had never solved a crime quite like this before.”

TME – Maybe the dude is just a chick magnet.

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