<![CDATA[NBC Southern California - Weird News]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/weird http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC4_40x125.png NBC Southern California http://www.nbclosangeles.comen-usFri, 01 Jul 2016 22:48:50 -0700Fri, 01 Jul 2016 22:48:50 -0700NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Police Pursue Go-Kart on East Bay Freeway]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 20:15:27 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/0629-2016-GoKartChase.jpg

A go-kart was recently spotted racing down an East Bay freeway and being pursued by police.

Video posted online shows a police patrol vehicle following the go-kart in Oakland.

Tonka Dre, who shot some video of what happened, said that this occurred on Sunday during a bike run to Los Angeles. He was the slowest in the pack, which is why the police got behind him.

Editor's note: The videos embedded below contain explicit language.



Photo Credit: @Tonka_Boy_Dre/Twitter
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<![CDATA[SoCal Weird News]]> Thu, 09 Jun 2016 21:51:03 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/sea+lion+in+store+2.jpg Enjoy images of LA's most memorable weird moments.

Photo Credit: The Cave Store]]>
<![CDATA[Mayflies Swarm Ill. Bridge]]> Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:25:16 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Mayfliest.png

Thousands of mayflies have taken over a bridge in central Illinois, creating a traffic nightmare for commuters trying to make their way across the city.

The Havana Police Department warned drivers of a massive mayfly swarm on its Facebook page Monday morning, posting two photos that showed the bridge over the Illinois River and a local squad car blanketed by the bugs.

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At one point the mound of insects piled 6 inches high, according to the post, making for slick and dangerous roadways for vehicles trying to make their way through the mess.

“There were already motorcycle accidents due to this and cars stuck in the center of the bridge,” police said.

Newly winged mayflies will emerge from the waters where they live until adulthood in droves when triggered by the right temperature, according to The Wall Street Journal. The insects then die within a few days.

The City of Havana Street Department and IDOT are working to get the mayflies under control, authorities said.

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Photo Credit: Havana Police Department
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<![CDATA[Llama Enjoys Leaf Blower's Breeze at Houston Zoo]]> Fri, 24 Jun 2016 09:52:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/llama-breeze.jpg Fiesta the llama enjoys the breeze when zookeepers at the Houston Children's Zoo use a leaf blower to clean to clean stalls.]]> <![CDATA[Arrest After Distressed Emu Spotted]]> Tue, 21 Jun 2016 17:32:45 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/burned+emu.jpg

A man was arrested on Monday evening in Campo, California, after discharging a shotgun when an animal control officer responded to an emu in distress outside his home, sheriff’s officials said.

Sean Michael Shepherd, 31, was taken into custody on suspicion of negligent discharge of a firearm and felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

He was being held on $30,000 bail on Tuesday evening. It wasn't immediately clear if he has an attorney.

Sheriff’s deputies said the bizarre situation surfaced about 6 p.m. Monday in the 28000 block of State Route 94. An animal control officer on patrol spotted an injured emu. As he approached the animal, a man came out of his home and exchanged heated words with the officer, deputies said.

The emu doesn't belong to the suspect, but is his neighbor's animal, officials said.

That’s when the man went inside and returned with a shotgun, firing it into the air, deputies said.

No one was hurt. The emu ran away and disappeared, according to authorities.

The animal’s feathers were apparently burnt. While it wasn't clear what caused the emu's injuries, the incident happened in the area of the Border Fire, which has spanned 7,500 acres near Potrero and caused some injuries to animals.



Photo Credit: San Diego County Animal Services]]>
<![CDATA[Cadillac Driver Plunges Into Long Beach Lagoon]]> Wed, 15 Jun 2016 14:10:27 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/160615-cadillac-into-colorado-lagoon-long-beach-1.jpg

A Cadillac driver went off road and plunged into a Long Beach lagoon in the early morning hours Wednesday, but the driver and passenger escaped with only minor injuries, police said.

The driver rammed through a guard rail at 4th Street and Monrovia Avenue (map) about 2:20 a.m. and continued several feet down an embankment and into the Colorado Lagoon, an urban wetlands complex in the east side of the city, the Long Beach Police Department said.

The driver and passenger swam out and attempted to flee, but were both detained, police said. It was unclear why they tried to leave.

"That's just amazing, lucky the tide was out and they weren't really in high water, and just to have them survive that it's amazing," said Ken Herbage, a park maintenance supervisor.

The driver was questioned and his female passenger was released.

The cause of the crash was also unknown.

Four hours later, a dive team and tow truck removed the fully submerged black Cadillac from the lagoon.

NBC4's Toni Guinyard contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: Toni Guinyard/KNBC-TV
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<![CDATA[Caution: Alligator Crossing]]> Tue, 07 Jun 2016 08:59:27 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/060616+gator+in+crosswalk.jpg

An alligator was caught on camera using a crosswalk in Flagler County, in northern Florida, Monday morning.

According to the Flagler County Sheriff's Office, the gator was spotted in the bushes near the intersection at Cypress Point Parkway and Cypress Edge Drive in Palm Coast.

FCSO Cpl. Kenny Goncalves said the gator was more than 5 feet long. It was sitting by the crosswalk and suddenly scampered across the roadway in the crosswalk.

"He just walked in the crosswalk like it was normal," Cpl. Goncalves said.

Officers stopped traffic to allow the gator to cross, which they said took about 30 seconds.

A trapper from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission was called, but before his arrival the gator went to a wooded lot and back to its natural habitat.



Photo Credit: Mark Olson / FCSO Facebook]]>
<![CDATA[Great Dane Rescue]]> Fri, 03 Jun 2016 12:26:17 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Dog+rescue+in+Middletown+1200.jpg

Firefighters come to the rescue on a daily basis, but the rescue of a dog in Middletown was out of the ordinary.

Firefighters responded to Hendley Street around 7:30 a.m. Friday after a resident spotted a Great Dane on a neighbor’s roof.

Firefighters said the dog’s owners were at work, so firefighter Mike Souza climbed a ladder to rescue the dog.

At first, the pup growled, but it soon warmed up to Souza, who guided the dog back through the open window.

“He had to really scooch to get back in because he was really tall,” Souza said. “I think he was happy to be back inside!”

Souza, who has been on the job for 28 years, said this was a first for him.

“A really unique situation, a unique call,” he said.

A woman who identified herself as the dog's owner responded to the Facebook post said the dog was in the basement with her other Great Dane and he is a "Houdini" who apparently pushed his way through a locked door and opened windows to get outside and "say hello to all the new neighbors."



Photo Credit: Middletown Fire Department]]>
<![CDATA[Ice Cream Truck as Prom Ride ]]> Wed, 01 Jun 2016 18:15:09 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/b87c89b5-f944-4ea3-89ac-23575cb10170.jpg

A Connecticut teen had a "chill" ride to his prom this year. 

The Bristol teen shocked classmates when he showed up to the senior prom in an ice cream truck. 

Zack Nichparenko said he wanted to take a "non-traditional" approach to prom. 

"I don't think anyone took me seriously at first," the teen said about his idea. 

The 17-year-old said he was outside his house about two weeks before Bristol Eastern High School's prom on May 27 when Daren's Ice Cream Truck stopped by. That's when he got the idea. 

Nichparenko said the ice cream man, Daren Carroll, has been a staple in his neighborhood since he was roughly 4 years old. 

Carroll said he's been asked to plenty of events in the past, like weddings or birthday parties, but never a prom.

"Never has anybody asked me to go the prom in the ice cream truck," Carroll told NBC Connecticut. "Never, ever."

The day of the prom, Carroll met with the high school senior at Slider's Grill and Bar parking lot to take some pictures with family before dropping Nichparenko off at the dance around the corner.

"At first I tried to talk him out of it," Carroll said, noting that at his own prom, no one was outside to see anyone arriving. "But he was right. When we showed up, about 200 people were there."

When Nichparenko and Carroll rolled up in the ice cream truck, they were stopped by security at the gate and asked what they were doing there. 

"I have a delivery!" Carroll told them. "I have a guest!"

No ice cream was sold to students outside the prom at Aqua Surf in Southington because the teens were about to go inside to eat, and Carroll said he didn't want to take away from that. 

"I wanted to do something that not only people will remember, but something that hasn’t been done before," Nichparenko said.

An ice cream truck ride to prom in Connecticut is apparently a first, which comes as no surprise from the aspiring entrepreneur. 

Nichparenko said his plans after high school is to start a dryer vent company in Bristol and has started drafting business ideas with his dad. 



Photo Credit: Zackery Nichparenko
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<![CDATA[Flintstones Car Parked Illegally]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 18:06:21 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/052616+key+west+flintstones+car.jpg

Authorities in Key West spent Thursday trying to meet the Flintstones, or at least the owner of an illegally parked car that looks like the modern Stone Age family's.

City officials said they found the vintage car in the right of way in the 800 block of Emma Street Thursday.

The city posted a photo of the car on its Facebook page, and the owner was found a short time later.

"Thanks to everyone who helped on this! And thanks for all the funny remarks. This island is awesome!" the city's post read.

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Photo Credit: City of Key West
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<![CDATA[Ospreys Drop Fish, Kitten From Nest]]> Tue, 24 May 2016 06:52:02 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/osprey+nest+stratford.jpg

The Stratford Fire Department is plagued with an unusual problem: Two ospreys that built a nest above the station are dropping sticks, fish and even a kitten in the path of unsuspecting firefighters below.

The ospreys, which can grow up to 2 feet long with wingspans over 5 feet, have nested on a communication antenna at the fire station along the Connecticut shoreline.

They often drop large sticks, and in some cases entire fish — their main source of food — in front of the main entrance below.

"We have ospreys that have built a nest up there and basically it's causing a little bit of problems with dropping stuff down on the main entrance of the fire station," said Stratford Fire Chief Robert McGrath.

An air conditioning unit was damaged last week after a dropped bass landed inside. Firefighters said the birds dropped a kitten on Sunday.

The other concern is that the nest could prevent the communication antenna from operating properly, according to the chief.

"It could compromise the signal going back and forth from the two towers," said McGrath.

According to the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, osprey are no longer endangered. The nest can be moved if there are no eggs inside, which firefighters say is the case with this one.

DEEP officials said April and May are egg-laying months for the birds, so firefighters are working on a plan to get the feathered visitors to leave.

"It's entertaining, I can tell you that, at best. But really, it's a nuisance," McGrath said.



Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Graduates Receive Diploma Cover With Typo]]> Fri, 20 May 2016 14:24:48 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/211*120/Diploma+Cover+5.20.16.jpg

Graduates at a Southern California high school are getting one last laugh before saying goodbye after the school distributed diploma covers with a typo.

A graduating senior at Ontario High School posted a photo to Twitter that shows a diploma cover handed out Thursday with the letters "h" and "c" transposed in the word "school."

School officials said the misspelling was a printing error made by the graduation products company.

"The principal has informed all Ontario graduates that the company has been contacted and will mail a corrected diploma cover to each graduate along with an apology letter," Chaffey Joint Union High School District Superintendent Mathew Holton said in a statement.

The diploma covers were distributed to about 550 seniors at a Thursday evening commencement ceremony, school officials said.

Holton added that the Ontario Class of 2016 was the first to graduate in a new stadium on campus with over 5,000 family members and friends in attendance.



Photo Credit: @jacedoooo_ via Twitter
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<![CDATA[Surf and Turf Arrest]]> Thu, 19 May 2016 17:00:42 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-482996433+%281%29.jpg

A Vermont man accused of stealing beer, lobster and Angus steak from a supermarket faces retail theft charges, authorities say.

State police said they were notified of a retail theft/trespassing incident at Hannaford Supermarket in Rutland on Wednesday.

An investigation found that Anthony Sargent, 53, of Rutland City, had gone into the store in violation of a notice against trespass and stole $105.63 worth of items, police said.

Police say Sargent concealed the products under his shirt.

The beer, lobster and steak were recovered by the store when Sargent was stopped in the parking lot. He fled the scene before authorities arrived, but was later located by probation and parole officers, officials said.

Sargent has a court date set for June 13. It was not immediately clear if he had an attorney.



Photo Credit: Getty Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[60 Cows Break Down Fence, Destroy South Bay Backyard]]> Wed, 18 May 2016 16:32:40 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/cows7.jpg

It’s not a sight she expected — or wanted — to see, but a Morgan Hill resident came face-to-face with roughly 60 full grown cows grazing in her backyard Tuesday.

The cows busted a hole through Cheryl Ajluni's fence and destroyed her beloved landscape fixtures. The resident also said that she suffered damage to the yard's grass, fruit trees and plants.

A Morgan Hill police officer and the resident’s mother helped chase away the animals, Ajluni said.

"Thank God for insurance," Ajluni wrote on Facebook. "The mess in my yard is heartbreaking."



Photo Credit: Cheryl Ajluni
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<![CDATA[Baby Opossum Found in Toilet]]> Mon, 16 May 2016 11:05:15 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/opossum+in+toilet.jpg

A woman made a startling discovery earlier this month when she found a baby opossum in her toilet in San Diego.

The Pacific Beach resident had no idea how the little critter got there but alerted San Diego County Animal Services, and an animal control officer responded to “rescue” the animal, authorities said.

Animal control officers said in a Facebook post that they don’t believe the opossum came into the toilet through the plumbing before being found May 1.

After the homeowner found a second opossum in her home, she discovered a broken window, which is likely how the furry creature got inside.

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The opossum is doing well after his toilet swim and recovering at Project Wildlife, officers said. The baby opossum will be released back into the wild once he’s old enough to survive on his own.

Finding rodents in the toilet isn't quite as rare in Southern California as you might think — a boa constrictor was found slithering in a toilet last year at a downtown San Diego PR firm.

And just last week, a python was found in a shower in South Park.

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Photo Credit: San Diego County Animal Services
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<![CDATA[Turtle OK After Windshield Crash]]> Fri, 13 May 2016 15:15:13 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/051316+turtle+into+windshield+i-4.jpg

Turtle power!

Nicole Marie Bjanes was driving on I-4 in Deltona on Monday when a turtle came crashing through her windshield.

Florida Highway Patrol officials said another car hit the turtle while it was crossing the highway and propelled it into the air. Bjanes posted photos on Facebook showing her shattered windshield with the turtle upside-down on her dashboard.

"I really can't even believe it!!! Thanks for all your concern. I am a lucky girl," Bjanes wrote on her post. "All the people who stopped and the EMT and trooper were taking pics....unbelievable, and the guy at the hospital was laughing at how he should word the incident!!! Life is good and sometimes a little crazy....someone is keeping my on my toes and entertained."

Bjanes said she was shaken up but otherwise alright. The turtle was checked out and also found to be in good shape and returned to some nearby water.

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Photo Credit: Nicole Marie Bjanes
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<![CDATA[Robot Dino Roasted at Exhibit Fire]]> Fri, 13 May 2016 08:35:37 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/CiSGLNbVEAA1zoH.jpg

A spark from a welding iron ignited a fire Thursday that caused the extinction of a 90-foot-long robotic dinosaur that was set to be part of an exhibit at a New Jersey theme park.

The animatronic Argentinosaurus was reduced to a charred skeleton at Overpeck County Park in Leonia, police said.

The exhibit, called "Field Station: Dinosaurs," is moving to the park this month after operating in Secaucus since 2012.

Exhibit creator Guy Gsell told The Record newspaper that a welder was putting finishing touches on the Argentinosaurus when a spark started the blaze.

The dinosaur was roasted to its skeleton. None of the exhibit's 33 other dinosaurs was damaged. Leonia police tweeted a picture of two of the surviving dinosaurs, saying "they refused to give a witness statement."

The exhibit is still on track to open Memorial Day weekend, Gsell told The Record, and he plans to rebuild the Argentinosaurus robot.

Argentinosaurus fossils were discovered in Argentina in the 1980s.



Photo Credit: Leonia Police Department
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<![CDATA[Unfortunate Big Rig Spills on SoCal Freeways]]> Mon, 27 Jun 2016 09:00:12 -0700 See more photos here.]]> See more photos here.]]> http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/160223-126-big-rig-crash-5.jpg Southern California traffic can be a headache, but it can get downright brutal – and sometimes weird – when highways and byways are shut down due to a big rig spill. See photos of milk, honey, lemons and other items that have splashed across freeways.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Officers Finds Gator Foot in Truck]]> Tue, 10 May 2016 01:25:33 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/050916+alligator+foot+dashboard+fwc.jpg

A Florida man was slapped with a citation after Florida Fish and Wildlife officers made an unusual find in his dashboard: an alligator foot.

FWC officers stopped the truck to check for a day-use pass in a wildlife management area near Lake Okeechobee when they found alligator parts scattered inside the cab, the agency wrote in a Facebook post Monday.

Among the parts was a gator foot hanging out of the truck's dashboard.

The driver claimed the parts were from an alligator he had hunted a few years ago, but the smell told officers otherwise, the FWC said.

The man then confessed to killing the gator a few days before without a permit and was cited for the violation, authorities said.



Photo Credit: FWC]]>
<![CDATA[Maine Bus Joyride]]> Mon, 09 May 2016 13:20:15 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/bus34.jpg

Talk about a joyride - a 12-year-old boy stole a school bus and took it for a drive, according to police in Bangor, Maine.

John St. Germain was in the passenger seat when he and his friend, Amanda, saw a bus driving dangerously in front of them. In cell phone video, it can be seen swerving, hitting the sidewalk and signs.

"At first it was comical, because we both thought it was a new driver - like someone being taught how to drive a bus," said St. Germain.

And it was a new driver - a very young one.

"I kind of saw his body structure [when the bus turned] and I was like, 'Oh my gosh - I think that's a kid," said St. Germain. "That's when it got scary."

Police say the child got access to the keys of a bus at the Bangor Cyr bus lines terminal and took it for spin.

As his friend called police, St. Germain decided he had to intervene.

"I was like, 'Alright, I'm going to take over,'" he said.

St. Germain stopped recording the video, jumped out of his car, and run up to the bus. The doors were slightly ajar, so he managed to get inside the slowly-moving vehicle. Then, he came face-to-face with the child driver.

"He didn't realize I was there for about 10 seconds or so, and then he looked at me and said 'I know what I'm doing,'" said St. Germain.

And then the kid kept driving.

"Then I kind of took the wheel, and put my foot on the brake, and then stopped the bus," St. Germain said. "I looked at him and said 'Alright, you need to get in the back now.'"

But the boy hopped off the bus and walked away. Police eventually caught him and charged him with operating without a license and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

Authorities called St. Germain to the police station.

"I thought 'I'm going to get in trouble for this. I'm going to go to jail or something, because I just high-jacked a bus,'" he said.

St. Germain was relieved, and honored, to learn the Bangor Police Department wanted to give him a challenge coin as an award.

"The term 'hero' is thrown around a lot, but this guy is a hero," said Bangor Police Sgt. Tim Cotton. "He stopped something from happening, he stopped injuries to the 12-year-old boy, he may have stopped other damage."

On the Bangor Police Department's Facebook page, Cotton writes that St. Germain very likely saved lives by taking action. The post has gone viral, and St. Germain isn't sure what to make of all the attention.

"I just did what anyone would have done," St. Germain said.

The boy was taken into custody.



Photo Credit: Bangor Police
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<![CDATA[Stray Cats Using Zoo Facilities as Litter Box]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 12:36:27 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/stray-cats.jpg Stray cats are sneaking into the Miami Zoo at night and relieving themselves, using sand in exhibits as litter boxes. But their feces can contain a deadly parasite, which causes a disease called toxoplasmosis. It's blamed for the deaths of three squirrel monkeys and a red kangaroo at the zoo. The crafty cats are sneaking in from an adjacent park. Now the zoo is trapping them, putting the healthy ones up for adoption. That doesn't sit well with the people of Cat Network, who say the best solution is for the zoo to keep all other land species "out."]]> <![CDATA[Lost Alligator Tries to Ring Doorbell at SC Home]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 08:50:25 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Alligator-Doorbell.jpg A large alligator crawled to the front door of a home in South Carolina and appeared to ring the doorbell on May 2. "I was out walking the dog and we kind of went around the corner from my daughter's house [when we saw the alligator]," said Gary Rogers, who began to record video of the startling scene.

Photo Credit: WCBD]]>
<![CDATA[Black Cat Slips Onto NHL Rink]]> Mon, 02 May 2016 09:02:13 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/IMG_9617.jpg

The San Jose Sharks got an unexpected visit Friday.

Before the NHL team beat the Nashville Predators 5-2 at the SAP Center, a black cat crept out of the player bench area and scurried onto the ice.

As the Sharks warmed up for the first game of their best-of-seven playoff series, fans watched the small feline making a beeline for an oversized, fiberglass shark head, only to escape under the seats at "the Shark Tank," as the arena is known.

The venue’s staff was able to safely rescue the cat and dubbed it Joe Paw-velski, after Sharks captain Joe Pavelski, the team announced Sunday.

"The amount of interest generated by Joe's appearance and those wishing to adopt him has been overwhelming," said Sharks Chief Operating Officer John Tortora in a statement.

Joe has been taken to a local animal shelter to undergo a health examination, the team said. Staff will also investigate whether the cat has a microchip, in the hopes of reuniting it with its owner.

"If he is indeed a stray, our goal is to find the best home for him with the support of our local animal shelters," Tortora said. "If families are interested in adopting Joe but unsuccessful, we strongly encourage you to consider adopting another animal in need of a good home from one of our terrific local animal shelters."



Photo Credit: San Jose Sharks
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<![CDATA[Woman Lured by Singles Ad Dies After Weeks in Captivity]]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 10:05:43 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/180*120/German_Ambulance-550668973.jpg

A 41-year-old woman who responded to a singles ad was held captive for several weeks by a man and his ex-wife — and later died at a hospital of injuries she suffered while in captivity, NBC News reported.

The woman, from Lower Saxony, Germany, contacted a man "who was looking for a steady partnership" and later moved in to her assailant's house.

Once there, she was physically abused by the man and his live-in ex-wife, authorities said. The suspects allegedly tried to take their "severely battered" victim back to her apartment, but when their car broke down, they called an ambulance. The woman died about two hours later of "blunt force trauma to the head," German officials said.

German paper Bild reported that the victim had been kept in a cellar and labeled the incident "The Horror House of Hoexter."



Photo Credit: ullstein bild via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Rider Dies When Horse Spooks After Lakeside Parade]]> Mon, 25 Apr 2016 13:20:38 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/horse+traine.PNG

An experienced horse trainer and member of the Escondido Mounted Posse died Saturday after her horse spooked and fell, knocking her off, a group founder said. 

Diana Cavender, 52, was riding to a staging area after the Lakeside Western Days Parade when the accident happened, said Al Pfeltz, one of the founders of the group. 

Her horse spooked and started to spin, Pfeltz said. Though Cavender tried to get the horse under control, it slipped on the asphalt and fell on its side, he said. 

"The last thing I remember seeing is the horse lose its footing and fall down on its right side and the force of the impact whipped Diana down and her head into the asphalt," he told NBC 7 San Diego. 

Cavender's head hit the ground; friends say her husband tended to her until medics arrived. 

She was taken to Sharp Memorial Hospital and died six hours after being admitted as a result of head injuries. 

Pfeltz said Cavender was one of the best horse trainers in the business. She and her husband owned a number of horses, he said. 

The rest of the posse says they lost their best rider. 

"Diana was always someone we respected because of her ability to ride and her knowledge of horses, but I think the most important thing was not the horse it was God and her husband," Pfeltz said.

Sometimes, even the most skilled riders can get knocked down, he said.

"Riding horses is like riding a motorcycle, it is not something you'll go through your whole life without getting hurt," said Pfeltz.

The Escondido Mounted Posse will hold a memorial service on Tuesday.



Photo Credit: Billy Ortiz]]>
<![CDATA[Marijuana Exhibit Coming to Oakland Museum]]> Thu, 14 Apr 2016 20:38:32 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/0414-216-PotGeneric.jpg

Here’s a first for California: Marijuana, not in a grow house, but in a museum. The Oakland Museum of California says “Altered State: Marijuana in California” is the first-ever museum exhibit dedicated to the much debated drug.

Usually, exhibits take about three years from idea to opening, but associate curator Sarah Seiter says the marijuana exhibit was fast tracked to about two years in hopes people could come see it before voting this November.

“We really want this to be a place where people can have a dialogue and have a really honest conversation about what their hopes and fears are around legalizing marijuana,” Seiter said, explaining the museum is not taking a side.

She says more than 100 community members have served as consultants on the exhibit in order to make sure “Altered State” is welcoming to all, regardless of their stance on weed.

“Families were actually using the space to talk to their kids about marijuana,” Seiter said of an area titled “Youth and Weed.”

Other displays include “Cannabis Science,” featuring live marijuana plants; “Criminal Dope,” highlighting the history of drug laws and arrests, and “Cannabis Confessional,” featuring a space where people can write their opinions anonymously.

“It’s easy to make decisions based on myth, so hopefully we can do it in a more educated way. So I think it’s great,” Cheryl Ziperstein, of Albany, said of the exhibit.

Current polls show about more than half of California’s likely November voters support legalizing pot. William Gomez, of Rodeo, is not one of these.

“An exhibit like this of marijuana is telling our kids it’s okay to do it, which I think it’s not okay,” Gomez said.

Though he says he opposes marijuana, he would not be opposed to taking his kids to learn about the issues, as long as he tours it first.

The exhibit opens to the public on Saturday.



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Great Dane Gets Stuck in Tree]]> Thu, 14 Apr 2016 10:40:51 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/DaneinTree.jpg Kora, a 120-pound Great Dane who was stuck 20 feet up a tree in Louisville, Nebraska, was rescued Saturday night by the local fire department.

Photo Credit: WOWT]]>
<![CDATA[Chimp Leads Police on Chase Through Japanese Town]]> Thu, 14 Apr 2016 09:58:18 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/chimp-escaped-zoo.jpg

A chimpanzee fled from a zoo in northern Japan and tried desperately to avoid being captured by climbing an electric pole.

Not for long.

Chacha, the male chimp, was on the loose nearly two hours Thursday after disappearing from the Yagiyama Zoological Park in Sendai, the city that's hosting finance ministers from the Group of Seven industrialized nations in May.

TV footage showed Chacha perched atop the pole, agitated and screaming at zoo workers below. Even after being hit by a sedative arrow in the back, Chacha desperately tried to escape, dangling from a power line.

He finally gave up and fell head down into a blanket held by a dozen workers on the ground. It's not immediately clear if he survived.

Zoo officials are investigating how he escaped.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Burger Shop Break-In]]> Mon, 11 Apr 2016 15:48:07 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/five+guys+burglary+cooking+burglar.jpg

Police in Washington, D.C., are searching for a man seen in surveillance video who apparently grilled himself a hamburger as the restaurant was closed before allegedly swiping some water.

Police said the burglary happened between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. March 18 at the Five Guys Burgers and Fries location in Columbia Heights, in the 1400 block of Irving Street NW.

Investigators said the man followed a delivery man into the restaurant and waited until he left. The man then rummaged through the restaurant, cooked food and stole bottled water before leaving.

Surveillance video shows a man appearing to put food on a grill in the restaurant while talking on a cell phone.

Anyone who has information regarding this case is asked to call police at 202-727-9099. Additionally, information may be submitted by sending a text message to 50411.



Photo Credit: DC Metropolitan Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Modern Update For World's Oldest Operating McDonald's]]> Mon, 11 Apr 2016 07:13:47 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/214*120/4_6_2016_exteriorshotMcdonalds.PNG The world’s oldest operating McDonald’s known for its historic 1950s architecture, including an animated neon "Speedee" mascot sign and iconic golden arches, will be getting a modern addition.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Gold-Flecked Meteorite Legal Fracas]]> Thu, 07 Apr 2016 08:41:29 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/METEORITEcrop.jpg

A gold-flecked meteorite that has traveled from the asteroid belt near Mars to the mountains of Fukang, China, and finally Marin County, California, is at the center of a vicious ownership battle being waged in federal court.

The 227-pound iron "pallasite" meteorite is estimated to be 4.5 billion years old. First discovered in Fukang, China about 15 years ago, it could be worth as much as $1 million, according to Stephen Settgast, an asteroid collecter who claims he's the rightful owner.

He sued a museum in Maine and a New York meteorite expert in February alleging breach of contract over the sale of the meteorite. But they have now filed a counterclaim, alleging that Settgast, who is staying in Marin County, is behind a "blatant theft of a unique and precious meteorite."

The countersuit alleges Settgast sold the meteorite for $425,000, then engaged in an "outrageous act of seller’s remorse" by stealing back the space rock for himself.

"This isn't a typical theft," said Wayne Minckley, undersheriff in Miami County, Kansas, in a Skype interview with NBC Bay Area.

A sheriff is involved in the out-of-this-world case because authorities aren’t yet ready to decide who stole the meteorite until the suit is settled.

"It’s a complicated case in the mere fact that the individual who sold it to the folks in Maine is our suspect in the theft," Minckley said.

Settgast would not speak on the record. But his attorney, Curt Edmonson of the Oregon firm, Slinde Nelson Stanford, said this is a simple business dispute gone awry.

"Civil suits don’t use terms like ‘steal.' That’s a criminal term," he said. "We didn’t go over the top in our complaint, but they certainly went over the top in their counterclaims."

But Settgast's story is full of holes, according to the founders of the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum — Lawrence Stifler and Mary McFadden of Brookline, Massachusetts — and meteorite expert Darryl Pitt, of New York. All three filed the counterclaim on March 29.

In the suit, Jeff Valle, the trio's Los Angeles attorney, laid out his clients’ argument like this: Noted for his ability to spot beauty and value in meteorites, Pitt suggested to the museum founders that they buy the meteorite in question. Stifler and McFadden agreed to pay Settgast $425,000 to feature the "Fukang meteorite" in their museum, which is not yet open.

In August 2014, Pitt brokered the deal with Settgast. The final of three payments was made in February 2015, the counterclaim contends. According to his website biography, Pitt is the purveyor of the "world's foremost collection of aesthetic iron meteorites," which he describes as "extraterrestrial objects d'art."

Valle and Pitt have declined to be interviewed.

After the money was paid, Pitt and the museum founders waited for the meteorite to be cleaned up and prepared by Kansas duo Keith and Dana Jenkerson, of KD Meteorites. The couple's website twinkles with brightly lit stars and boasts they've been "chasing meteorites since 1990s."

The Jenkersons took almost two years to stabilize, restore and prepare the "Fukang meteorite," the countersuit alleges, and on Jan. 10, Keith Jenkerson told Pitt this was "one of the most awesome meteorites to ever be displayed." He guessed the spiffed-up space rock to now be worth $1 million. But Pitt and the museum founders said this higher price is wildly inflated, the counterclaim states.

Less than two weeks later, the meteorite was reported stolen.

Pitt and the museum founders allege that Settgast, whose lawyer described him as a "world-renowned" fossil hunter who also has a ranch in Montana, went into the Jenkersons' lab on Jan. 23 and stole back the meteorite. Settgast's attorneys claim a condition of the sale was that the meteorite couldn't be shown in a public museum, a point the museum founders' say is simply not true, the counterclaim contends.

How Settgast would have gotten the meteorite out of the lab, at the Jenkersons' home in Osawatomie, Kansas, without detection, and then to Marin County, where Settgast has been living with a relative, has not been clearly explained.

Minckley, from the sheriff’s office, reiterated that it’s his understanding Settgast stole the meteorite from the lab. He said there was no surveillance video to document what might have happened. His office, however, is reserving a final determination on whether a crime was committed, and by whom, until a federal judge makes a ruling on who really owns the meteorite.

As for why the sheriff’s department is letting the civil case play out first, Edmonson said: "That tells you a little bit about how they feel about the criminal action. If they don’t feel there is enough evidence for the claim of theft, then it’s not there."

A hearing is set for June to be heard by Oakland-based U.S District Court Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong.



Photo Credit: Maine Mineral and Gem Museum
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<![CDATA[Alligator Tries to Get in Fla. Home]]> Fri, 08 Apr 2016 07:54:16 -0700 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/040516+plant+city+gator.jpg

An alligator was removed from a mobile home community in Central Florida Tuesday after it approached a resident's front door.

According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, the gator was 9 feet 5 inches long. Authorities said the animal "was attempting to gain entry into a residential mobile home."

Officials said a licensed trapper and HCSO deputy were able to capture and remove the gator before it could harm anyone.

Plant City is about 30 miles east of Tampa.

 [[374687901, C]]



Photo Credit: Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office
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