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August 14, 2013

August 13, 2013
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Weird National Briefs Weird National Briefs

A melon-choly memorial

MUSCATINE, Iowa - At age 79, a southeast Iowa man said he's nearing the end of his life and that he wants a unique grave memorial.

On Thursday in Fruitland, John Hoopes watched as workers installed what certainly is the cemetery's only marker topped by granite appearing to be a giant slice of watermelon.

'I was just hoping they wouldn't drop it,' Hoopes said. 'And they didn't!'

Hoopes sold watermelon for decades at Hoopes Melon Shed in Fruitland, south of Muscatine. He told the Muscatine Journal that he wanted a memorial that reminded him of the family business his great-grandfather began nearly 140 years ago.

The family sold the business three years ago.

Hoopes said he liked the 4,561-pound monument the moment Polly Geurink, sales manager at Iowa Memorial Granite Company in Muscatine, suggested the design.

'Polly called me two weeks after I asked her (to design the memorial) and said, I think you'll like it,'' Hoopes recalled. 'I did.'

TME The archaeologists of the future are going to have a field day with this one.

Only in Utah

SANDY, Utah - A Utah man faces charges after police say he ran a speakeasy out of his garage and sold drinks to an undercover officer.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports 33-year-old Jared Williams of Sandy has pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor charge of running a business without a license.

Records show a resident told police in May about the so-called 'Dog Bar,' named for a bulldog painted on the garage door.

Police say they sent an undercover officer to the home in June, and found about 10 people there.

The man behind the counter identified himself as Jared and reportedly told the officer he had started the bar with his father in 2006.

Sandy police say they later returned and seized 106 bottles of liquor, 77 cans of beer and a cash register.

TME Seeing the inside of a Utah speakeasy has been added to the bucket list.

Buttery bad guy

UNION, S.C. - A man from Union has been arrested after a neighbor accused him of smearing buttered toast on her SUV.

Union County sheriff's deputies say 34-year-old Christopher Brannon was arrested Saturday and charged with malicious damage to property.

Authorities say a woman reported seeing Brannon wiping something on the back windshield of her SUV. The woman found a greasy film on the glass and a piece of buttered toast on the ground nearby.

Brannon was arrested and released from jail on a personal recognizance bond. It wasn't known if he had an attorney.

Damage to the SUV was estimated at $1. A sheriff's report did not mention a motive.

TME That guy is either a terrible vandal or a brilliant performance artist.

Cardboard cop

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The burly officer watching over the bike racks at a Boston-area transportation hub is a real stiff.

As part of an effort to cut crime at the Alewife MBTA subway and bus station in Cambridge, transit police placed a cardboard cutout of a police officer in the bicycle cage. Hundreds of people use the racks daily.

Deputy Chief Robert Lenehan says the fake cop, along with video cameras and a new lock, has cut bike thefts by 67 percent.

It's also a money saver. Lenehan estimates it would cost $200,000 a year to have an officer watch over the cage full-time.

The cutout is actually a picture of real MBTA Officer David Silen.

Silen says the split second thieves take to glance at the cutout is enough to discourage them.

TME The cardboard fireman experiment wasn't nearly as successful.

The couple that drinks together

FREEDOM, Pa. - Police say a western Pennsylvania couple was driving drunk _ in the same car, on the same night, after they switched seats shortly before they were pulled over.

Online court records don't list attorneys for 33-year-old Jason Misencik and 24-year-old Crystal Seachrist, who live together in New Sewickley Township.

They both face a preliminary hearing Aug. 30 on drunken driving and other charges filed recently in connection with a July 4 traffic stop.

The Beaver County Times reports that's when police saw Misencik swerving before he pulled into a parking lot and could be seen switching seats with Seachrist, who was driving when police pulled over the car moments later.

Police say both smelled of alcohol and were incapable of safe driving, and that Misencik's blood-alcohol content exceeded the state limit though Seachrist's was slightly below.

TME They really do share everything even DUIs.

I am (not) the law

LAS VEGAS, N.M. - Authorities say a man driving a truck with police lights on top made a crucial misstep during a bogus police stop in northern New Mexico.

Police say the two men he pulled over for speeding were real state police agents in an unmarked vehicle.

According to New Mexico State Police, 26-year-old John Shelton, of Logan, was arrested Wednesday following the sham traffic stop in San Miguel County.

Investigators say Shelton had a pistol on his hip and told the agents he was a member of the New Mexico State Police Search and Rescue and a trained law enforcement officer _ something officials later discovered wasn't true.

Shelton is facing charges of impersonating an officer.

It was not clear if Shelton had an attorney.

TME Think he'll try and cop a plea?

Last modified on Tuesday, 13 August 2013 20:01

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