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Weird National Briefs (01/30/2019)

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Semi-tough

FRESNO, Calif. - Police in central California have arrested a carjacking suspect caught on video escaping by jumping on the side of a moving semi-truck.

Officials say the man grabbed a woman’s keys as she pumped gas Jan. 9 in southeast Fresno. The woman fought the suspect as he tried to get into her car and he ran from the scene.

The man threw a trashcan at a good Samaritan who chased him through the gas station. A bystander then recorded cell phone video of the suspect clinging to the cab of a truck as it drove away.

The Fresno Bee reported Saturday that Bryan McCarter was arrested Jan. 21 without incident. The 59-year-old Fresno resident could face an attempted carjacking charge. It wasn’t known Sunday if he has an attorney.

TME – A jack(er) of all trades, master of none.

Over the hood

BOSTON - State Police say they were called to the Massachusetts Turnpike because a man was clinging to the hood of a moving SUV in an apparent fit of road rage.

Massachusetts State Police responded to I-90 westbound in Weston Friday, where witnesses had gotten the SUV to stop.

Police say 37-year-old Mark Fitzgerald and 65-year-old Richard Kamrowski got into a minor crash, then Kamrowski got onto Fitzgerald’s SUV.

Police say Fitzgerald traveled at speeds of up to 70 miles per hour, stopping and accelerating when Kamrowski didn’t get off.

Fitzgerald, of Lynn, is charged with assault with a dangerous weapon and other violations. Kamrowski, of Framingham, was charged with disorderly conduct.

Kamrowski told WBZ-TV he was trying to keep Fitzgerald from leaving the scene.

It’s unclear whether either man is represented by a lawyer who could comment. Neither were injured.

TME – Apparently, these people live in a ‘70s cop show.

Most emu-sing

GALVESTON, Texas - Police in coastal Texas have captured a pair of runaway emus that had been on the lam for a day after escaping their owner’s backyard.

Emus aren’t permitted in Galveston, but police say a man recently brought the large, flightless birds to the island after the death of his mother. She’d owned them at her home near Houston.

The Galveston County Daily News reports the emus escaped their new owner’s backyard sometime Monday. Police recaptured the birds near an elementary school Tuesday morning.

Officials say the birds’ owner didn’t realize Galveston had a ban on emus and that he’s working with authorities to find an off-island home for them.

TME – Prepare to have your mind blown: they’re flightless birds that take flight.

Dances with wolves

MEDFORD, Ore. - A rancher in Jackson County who has had gray wolves eat his livestock is now using a lime-green inflatable dancing man to keep the predators at bay.

The Mail Tribune reports that Ted Birdseye began using the contraption Satuday in his pasture after the pack killed another calf in that field.

Birdseye says he’s lost five calves and one guard dog to the pack in that field.

The device is the same as those commonly seen a used car lots and is powered by a generator that blows air into the balloon so it jumps and wiggles in the air.

Birdseye doesn’t know if the idea is working yet but he says he’s willing to try anything.

TME – Plus, one of the wolves bought a 2011 Subaru Impreza.

Eight is enough

BOSTON - Eighty-four-year-old Wilson Menashi retired more than 25 years ago after a long career as a chemical engineer. Since then, he’s spent thousands of hours volunteering at the New England Aquarium in Boston, where he’s become known as the “Octopus Whisperer.”

The aquarium says Menashi certainly has a way with octopuses. Menashi says he can’t explain it, but he’s able to connect in deep and meaningful ways with the enigmatic eight-armed sea creatures.

Aquarium scientist Bill Murphy says Menashi’s eye for detail and his patience make him the perfect human companion for the octopuses.

Menashi’s obsession has led to some awkward moments, though. The married Menashi sometimes returns home with his arms and neck covered with marks left by the animals’ powerful suction cups.

TME – So this guy is, like, 100 percent a supervillain, right?

Dearly departed drive-thru

SWANSEA, Mass. - Officials say a car crashed into a funeral home in Massachusetts, disrupting a service that was going on inside.

Swansea Fire Chief Eric Hadjer says two elderly women in the car were taken to the hospital with minor injuries. He says no one inside the Waring-Sullivan Home of Memorial Tribute at Birchcrest was injured.

Hadjer says the car reversed into the front of the home on Saturday morning, struck a fireplace and landed in the lobby. The funeral service was going on in an adjacent room.

Hadjer says the cause of the crash is under investigation.

TME – We assume they were simply trying to cut out the middleman.

Cannon fodder

BOISE, Idaho - Idaho National Guard’s commanding officer says he will look into 19 startlingly loud ceremonial cannon blasts that were part of Gov. Brad Little’s inauguration.

The cannon fire on Jan. 4 set off car alarms in downtown Boise and scattered Canada geese into the air as smoke billowed around soldiers. Some of the several thousand people attending flinched in surprise.

Republican Sen. Chuck Winder of Boise asked Friday during a committee meeting of state lawmakers why the cannon blasts seemed louder than normal.

Idaho Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Michael J. Garshak says he’ll look into why the blasts were so loud.

Garshak is responsible for maintaining the Idaho National Guard’s combat readiness as combat reserve for the Army and Airforce.

TME – Always nice to start your term with a bang.

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