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News Quirks

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Curses, Foiled Again

Antoine Jennings covered his head with a Chicago Bulls cap and a skin-tight black skullcap while robbing three suburban Chicago banks of $4500, but then he posted photos of himself wearing the caps on Facebook, using his real name. FBI agents matched the photos to security camera footage of the heists and arrested Jennings, who pleaded guilty. (Chicago Sun-Times)

Last Wish

After Scott E. Entsminger, 55, died in Columbus, Ohio, the death notice included his request that six Cleveland football players serve as pallbearers to lower him into his grave “so the Browns can let him down one last time.” (Columbus Dispatch)

Little Things Mean a Lot

Geronimo Narciso, 37, fired two shots in the air in Pangasinan, in the Philippines, and was tucking his gun into his waistband when it fired again, according to ABS-CBN News, and accidentally shot off his penis. Earlier this year, the Trinidad and Tobago Guardian reported that a security guard accidentally shot off his penis. He survived, only to be charged with illegally possessing the weapon. (Huffington Post)

What Were We Thinking?

After the New York Mets asked the American Indian Community House to help organize a Native American Heritage Day at the ballpark, the nonprofit group bought a block of 500 tickets and was invited to stage pregame festivities, including traditional singing and dancing, outside Citi Field. The Mets also agreed to print 500 T-shirts for the occasion and broadcast two public-service announcements for the group on the stadium’s video boards. Then Mets officials noticed the game was scheduled for July 25 against the Atlanta Braves. Concerned that the Braves, known for their fans’ tomahawk-chop cheer, might interpret the event as a protest over the team name, the Mets notified the AICH that there would be no public-service announcements and no pregame festivities. “This whole thing wasn’t even our idea,” AICH deputy director Kevin Tarrant said after the group canceled its participation and requested a refund for the 500 tickets. “But it just feels like we’re being marginalized again within our own community.” (New York Times)

Odd Accidents

Police said the driver of a Ford Taurus that crashed into a sport utility vehicle in Crestwood, Ill., killing front-seat passenger Linda Shattuck, lost control of the vehicle after a cellphone charging cord became entangled with the steering wheel. (Chicago Sun-Times)

Criminal Cuisine

Sheriff’s deputies who arrested Rick Frederick, 22, for resisting arrest for drunk driving and 11 other violations in LaSalle County, Ill., reported that while sitting in the patrol car, Frederick started eating the molding around the door. The deputies added criminal damage to government property to the other charges. (Associated Press)

Nickel-and-Dime Crime

Investigators who noticed a surge in collections after Buffalo, N.Y., switched from parking meters to computerized pay stations accused parking-meter mechanic James Bagarozzo, 58, of stealing $210,000 over an eight-year span, all in quarters. Prosecutors said Bagarozzo, who blamed a gambling addiction and Crohn’s disease for his actions, regularly took coins from 70 to 75 meters a day, rolled them and exchanged the $10 rolls for cash at various banks. In the year following Bagarozzo’s arrest and that of a former coworker accused of stealing $15,000 in quarters, parking commissioner Kevin Helfer said parking-meter revenue increased by more than $500,000. (Associated Press)

Wanna-Be of the Week

Firefighters arriving at a library fire in Brooksville, Fla., noticed a man on the scene wearing firefighting gear. When asked for an explanation, the man, identified as Joseph Michael Brannen, 18, said he bought the gear on eBay, heard the call about the fire on his scanner and showed up hoping to help fight the blaze. After further questioning, Brannen admitted setting the fire, which caused more than $500,000 in damage. (South Florida Sun-Sentinel)

Update: See No Evil

Following the release of pictures taken after the July 6 Asiana Airlines crash in San Francisco showing a fire truck running over and killing a 16-year-old survivor who’d been thrown clear of the crash, the city fire department explicitly banned helmet-mounted devices that record emergency scenes, such as the one worn by a firefighter that showed how Ye Meng Yuan died. “The privacy of the individual is paramount,” Chief Joanna Hayes-White insisted, but Anthony Tarricone, attorney for the victim’s family, questioned the decision and its timing, asking, “Why would anybody not want to know the truth?” (Associated Press)

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