New York police officer arrested over plot to kidnap and eat women

A New York police officer was arrested on Wednesday after planning the kidnap, rape, torture and cannibalisation of a number of women, the FBI said.

Gilberto Valle, who has been an officer with the NYPD for six years, was detained after the FBI intercepted emails and instant messages showing that he conspired with others to abduct, cook and eat body parts of a number of women.

The criminal complaint cites numerous emails and instant messages that shed light on macabre planning of torture and cannibalism.

The FBI alleges that Valle, 28, met one of his potential victims for lunch, but did not follow through with the acts discussed in his electronic communications. The complaint shows that Valle was corresponding with two unnamed co-conspirators before his arrest — via

Austrian granny takes on armed bank robber

An 82-year-old grandmother took on a bank robber who was armed with a gun and a home-made bomb, according to an Austrian newspaper report.

Hertha Wallecker is said to have ripped the thief’s mask off and snatched a bag containing cash he had stolen out of his hand, shouting: The money belongs to the bank.

The robber fled the bank in the village of Sankt Egyden, in the country’s east, empty-handed and was arrested later in the day — via

Domestic Violence Increases After Major Sporting Events

PROBLEM: We know that domestic violence rates spike during Christmas and New Year’s. Following the 2006 World Cup (in which Italy defeated France in a shootout), the UK’s Home Office released a report claiming that domestic violence had risen during the tournament. Are sporting events really as emotionally fraught as the holidays?

METHODOLOGY: Professor Allan Brimicombe and BBC News journalist Rebecca Café applied more vigorous analysis to the Home Office’s theory. Invoking England’s Freedom of Information Act, they obtained statistics from police reports from the 2010 World Cup and the analogous, football-free period in 2009. In addition to studying the overall rate of domestic violence, they looked specifically at the outcomes of the tournament games, predicting that losses would spur more domestic disputes, while wins might be associated with joy, conviviality, and, consequently, fewer incidences of violence.

RESULTS: When England lost 4-1 to Germany, its heaviest defeat at the World Cup finals, domestic violence rose by 31.5 percent. But a few days earlier, when hope for the championship was still alive and England defeated Slovenia, domestic violence also rose, by a similar 27.7 percent.

Interestingly, when England tied Slovenia, incidences of violence only increased by 0.1 percent, and when its match against the US ended in a draw, the domestic violence rate actually dropped by 1.9 percent.

CONCLUSION: Both dramatic wins and devastating losses during the World Cup were associated with significantly increased domestic violence in England, while ties didn’t appear to have any effect — via

Oregon farmer eaten by pigs

Oregon authorities are investigating how a farmer was eaten by his pigs. Terry Vance Garner, 69, never returned after he set out to feed his animals last Wednesday on his farm near the Oregon coast, the Coos county district attorney said on Monday.

A family member found Garner’s dentures and pieces of his body in the pig enclosure several hours later, but most of his remains had been consumed, the district attorney, Paul Frasier, said. Several of the pigs weighed 320kg (700lb) or more.

It is possible Garner had a medical emergency, such as a heart attack, or was knocked over by the animals, then killed and eaten, Frasier said, adding that at least one pig had previously bitten Garner.

The possibility of foul play is being investigated as well. For all we know, it was a horrific accident, but it’s so doggone weird that we have to look at all possibilities, Frasier told the Register-Guard newspaper — via

Hate crime: Amish leader found guilty over beard attacks

The leader of an Amish breakaway group was convicted on Thursday of hate crimes in beard- and hair-cutting attacks against members of his own faith following a dispute over religious differences.

A federal jury found Samuel Mullet Sr guilty of orchestrating the cuttings of Amish men’s beards and women’s hair last fall in attacks that terrorised the normally peaceful religious settlements in eastern Ohio.

Mullet and four of his children were among 16 people who prosecutors say planned and carried out the five separate attacks that amounted to hate crimes because they were motivated by religious disputes. Prosecutors say the defendants targeted hair because it carries spiritual significance in their faith — via

No hard feelings after dog shoots huntsman in France

A leaping dog inadvertently shot his master in the hand by catching the trigger of his shotgun during a hunt in the Dordogne, south-western France.

The shot blew off part of the huntsman’s right hand, which he had to have amputated after being flown to hospital in Bordeaux.

But the victim, whose name was given as Rene, said he had only himself to blame for not applying the safety catch.

It wasn’t the dog’s fault — and he’s adorable! he told France Bleu radio — via

Surgeon rides child’s bike to get through traffic nightmare for surgery

Baton Rouge surgeon, Catherine Baucom, MD of Elliot Mastology Centre, was on her way to surgery at BRASS Surgery Centre Wednesday morning when she found herself caught in the traffic caused by the accident that shut-down Interstate 10 early Wednesday morning.

According to officials at BRASS Surgery Centre, Dr Baucom tried to navigate the gridlock to no avail, so she decided to take matters into her own hands.

Dr Baucom remembered a friend that lived a few blocks from her position in the mayhem and made her way to his house.

Catherine called, she was outside my house. She said ‘Hey do you have a bike?’ I walked outside and said yea, its a kids bike, said Dr Brian Barnett. After a quick test run, Dr Baucom decided the bike was her only choice to get to the hospital. I got the air pump out and aired the tires up as much as I could.

He gladly loaned her his seven year old daughter’s bike and helmet and the nearly six foot tall surgeon resumed her journey to the surgery centre.

It was hot pink and small, Dr Baucom said, describing the bike. The helmet was pink with princesses. He added he was laughing so much he couldn’t get video of her before she peddled away. But she did utilise the plastic basket on front, to put her cell phone in. Showed her experience with the bike — via

Man dressed as Sasquatch hit and killed near Kalispell

A man wearing a Sasquatch suit died after being struck by two cars Sunday evening on US Highway 93 south of Kalispell.

The Flathead County Coroner has identified the victim as Randy Lee Tenley, 44, of Kalispell.

Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Jim Schneider says friends of the victim said Tenley was wearing a military-style camouflage ghillie suit in hopes of creating a Bigfoot hoax — via

Manchester NHS trust bans metal paper fasteners

Health bosses have banned metal paper fasteners from GP surgeries, clinics and offices — because they are deemed a safety risk.

Staff at NHS Manchester are no longer allowed to use to the steel binders after a member of staff hurt their finger on one.

A memo sent to all of the health trust’s employees said the fasteners are now prohibited.

Instead it warns staff to use plastic ones to avoid injury — and urges them to dispose of the metal clips carefully.

Astonished staff have described the move as nannying — via

Sword-wielding knights rob medieval festival

A gang of thieves dressed as knights and armed with a sword and an axe robbed the organisers of a medieval festival in north-east France and made off with 20,000 euros ($25,000), police said.

The theft took place in the early hours of Monday as organisers were counting revenues from the festival in Bitche, near France’s border with Germany, a spokesman for regional police in Lorraine said — via

Ann Pettway jailed for 12 years in New York baby kidnap

A US woman who stole a baby from a New York City hospital in 1987 and raised the child as her own has been sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Pettway, 51, was arrested last year after the victim, Carlina White, discovered she had been kidnapped.

She pleaded guilty in February to kidnapping the three-week-old Ms White from hospital.

Prosecutors increased their recommended sentence to 20 years, saying they had uncovered new facts about the case.

They specifically challenged the defence’s contention that Pettway had provided a stable, loving and happy home, for Ms White for 23 years. She was raised as Nejdra Nance in Connecticut and later in Georgia.

Pettway was convicted of five crimes while Ms White was in her custody, according to a probation department, and had used cocaine from 1983 to 2005.

Ms White’s biological mother, Joy White, also told probation officers that her daughter told her that Pettway had once hit her with a shoe, leaving an imprint on her face — via

Australia Moves To Europe

NBC’s official Olympic website describes Australia as located in central Europe:

Located in central Europe, bordered to the north by Germany and the Czech Republic, to the west by Switzerland and Liechtenstein, to the south by Italy and Slovenia, and to the east by Hungary and Slovakia. Is primarily mountainous with the Alps and foothills covering the western and southern provinces.

And people have been pointing it out for at least a day, and NBC is sticking to its story — via

C-17 Accidentally Lands at Small GA Airport

A C-17 Globemaster III headed for MacDill Air Force Base on Friday afternoon landed inadvertently at the much smaller Peter O Knight GA airport located just a few miles away, according to airport authorities.

The 174-foot-long transport touched down on the airport’s 3,405-foot-long, 100-foot-wide runway around 1.30pm, coming to a stop within 10 feet of the runway’s end, according to witnesses. The C-17 had flown in from Southwest Asia with 42 people on board, 19 of whom were crewmembers — via

Cat Marks 15 Years as Mayor of Alaska Town

This time, Alaska may have really found a way to fix American politics. The mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, boats sky-high approval ratings, a 15-year winning streak and, with over 6,000 subscribers, more friends than you on Facebook.

His secret? He’s a cat.

Fifteen years ago, the citizens of Talkeetna (pop. 800) didn’t like the looks of their candidates for mayor. Around that same time resident Lauri Stec, manager of Nagley’s General Store, saw a box of kittens and decided to adopt one. She named him Stubbs because he didn’t have a tail and soon the whole town was in love with him.

So smitten were they with this kitten, in fact, that they wrote him in for mayor instead of deciding on one of the two lesser candidates. Mayor Stubbs has held his position ever since — via

Obituary: Val Patterson

Now that I have gone to my reward, I have confessions and things I should now say. As it turns out, I am the guy who stole the safe from the Motor View Drive Inn back in June, 1971. I could have left that unsaid, but I wanted to get it off my chest. Also, I really am not a PhD. What happened was that the day I went to pay off my college student loan at the U of U, the girl working there put my receipt into the wrong stack, and two weeks later, a PhD diploma came in the mail. I didn’t even graduate, I only had about 3 years of college credit. In fact, I never did even learn what the letters PhD even stood for. For all of the Electronic Engineers I have worked with, I’m sorry, but you have to admit my designs always worked very well, and were well engineered, and I always made you laugh at work. Now to that really mean Park Ranger; after all, it was me that rolled those rocks into your geyser and ruined it. I did notice a few years later that you did get Old Faithful working again. To Disneyland — you can now throw away that Banned for Life file you have on me, I’m not a problem any more — and SeaWorld San Diego, too, if you read this — via

Human corpses harvested in multimillion-dollar trade

On February 24, Ukrainian authorities made an alarming discovery: bones and other human tissues crammed into coolers in a grimy white minibus.

Investigators grew even more intrigued when they found, amid the body parts, envelopes stuffed with cash and autopsy results written in English.

What the security service had disrupted was not the work of a serial killer but part of an international pipeline of ingredients for medical and dental products that are routinely implanted into people around the world.

The seized documents suggested that the remains of dead Ukrainians were destined for a factory in Germany belonging to the subsidiary of a US medical products company, Florida-based RTI Biologics — via

Window blinds help nab CNM burglar

Some window blinds helped catch a man police say was breaking in at CNM.

Thomas Molina, 38, is charged with burglary and breaking and entering.

APD says they got a call about someone trying to break in at CNM on Sunday.

When they arrived they say Molina tried to get away but got stuck in the window blinds — via

Parents try to smuggle baby through Xray machine in Sharjah

Customs officials in Sharjah airport were stunned to see a five-month-old baby in a handbag go through an Xray machine on Saturday, according to reports.

The couple had actually arrived on Friday but was not allowed entry on account of not having a visa for the baby. Airport authorities allowed them to stay until the visa office opened on Sunday reported Emirates 24/7.

However on Saturday morning, the couple tried to sneak the baby out by placing him in hand luggage, thinking they could evade attention as a new security shift had started — via

Lifeguard fired for helping in beach rescue in Hallandale Beach

As lifeguards are paid and trained to do, Tomas Lopez rushed down the beach to rescue a drowning man — and then got fired for it.

The problem: Lopez stepped out of the beach zone his company is paid to patrol, a supervisor said Tuesday.

I ran out to do the job I was trained to do, said Lopez, 21, of Davie. I didn’t think about it at all.

At least two other lifeguards have quit in protest.

What was he supposed to do? Watch a man drown? asked one, Szilard Janko — via

The South Florida cop who won’t stay fired

Opa-locka has the dubious distinction of employing the cop who can’t be fired. Though the city keeps on trying.

Sgt German Bosque of the Opa-locka Police Department has been disciplined, suspended, fined and sent home with pay more than any officer in the state.

He has been accused of cracking the head of a handcuffed suspect, beating juveniles, hiding drugs in his police car, stealing from suspects, defying direct orders and lying and falsifying police reports. He once called in sick to take a vacation to Cancún and has engaged in a rash of unauthorized police chases, including one in which four people were killed.

Arrested and jailed three times, Bosque, 48, has been fired at least six times. Now under suspension pending yet another investigation into misconduct, Bosque stays home and collects his $60,000-a-year pay cheque for doing nothing — via

Scientologists are creepy, says Rupert Murdoch on Tom Cruise

The media mogul Rupert Murdoch has targeted Tom Cruise in a series of tweets that described the Church of Scientology as a very weird cult.

Scientology back in news. Very weird cult, but big, big money involved with Tom Cruise either number two or three in hiearchy (sic), Murdoch posted on his official Twitter feed, Reuters reports.

The News Corp chairman and chief executive posted the comment on Sunday, after news of Cruise’s split with Katie Holmes broke on Friday. Holmes has reportedly cited Cruise’s ties to Scientology as a reason for their separation — via

Suicide by poison suspected in Arizona courtroom death as verdict was read

As the word guilty filled the silence of a Phoenix courtroom, defendant Michael Marin closed his eyes, put his head in his hands and appeared to put something in his mouth. He then took a swig from a sports bottle.

Minutes later, the 53-year-old Marin was dead.

Now investigators are trying to confirm their suspicion that Marin popped a poison pill after the jury found him guilty of arson, a bizarre ending to a case that began in 2009 when he emerged from his burning mansion in scuba gear — via

A footwear obsession worth $1m: hedge fund manager sues ex-wife over her 1200 pairs of shoes

Forget the house, the children or even Flopsy the pet rabbit; it’s time to turn your divorce lawyer’s attention to this thorny question: when a marriage fails, who gets custody of the shoes?

No, seriously. It’s all about the heels. Daniel Shak, a US hedge fund manager, is currently suing his ex-wife, Beth, for 35 per cent of her $US1 million collection of footwear (comprising an admittedly gobsmacking 1200 pairs – including 700 Christian Louboutins, with their distinctive red soles), which he claims she kept secret from him during their bitter divorce three years ago.

Mrs Shak, a professional poker player, has responded by asking how he failed to notice that the closet in the master bedroom was crammed from floor to ceiling with shoes. (And also, presumably, how he missed her performances on the channel ShoesTV and in documentaries such as God Save My Shoes, and even failed to notice her new blog, — via

Woman left kids in car after wreck, later found naked

A woman was found naked and eating ice cream inside a drug store after leaving three children alone in a car after a wreck, investigators said.

Stephanie Dillard, 34, has been charged with endangering a child.

Houston police said Dillard’s children, ages 5, 12 and 16, were in the car with her when her vehicle collided with a METRO bus near South Post Oak and Orem on Friday.

All of the children were shaken up and suffered minor injuries. The 5-year-old had a large gash over one eye, officials said — via

‘Kindness of America’ snapper shot himself in ‘act of self-promotion’

The hitchhiking photographer who captured the hearts of a nation after being shot while researching The Kindness of America, has admitted administering the lead supplement himself and making the rest of the tale up.

Authorities in Montana are considering whether to charge Ray Dolin over the whole sorry saga.

Dolin was found bleeding by the side of a highway on Saturday, 9 June. He told authorities that he had been hitchiking across the state as part of his research for a planned memoir on the Kindness of America when a car had pulled up briefly in order for its driver to pop a cap in his ass (actually, his arm).

Sheriffs subsequently arrested 52 year old Lloyd Danielson, who was slapped with charges of felony assault.

Dolin, for his part, surfed a wave of public sympathy from his hospital bed, practically assured of a guaranteed audience for the putative book.

However, charges were dropped against Danielson late last Thursday, and on Friday authorities said that Dolin had confessed to shooting himself — via

Praise the Lord and crank the bass: Betty Jones busted for loud worship

A Tennessee woman says she was just praising the Lord, although at high volume, when she received a citation accusing her of violating the city’s noise ordinance. She later was arrested by police on a disorderly conduct charge.

Fifty-four-year-old Betty Jones tells WCYB-TV that her routine every Sunday includes five hours of praising and dancing, while she listens to music by Johnny Cash, Randy Travis, Alan Jackson and The Judds.

But neighbours in Bristol complained about loud music, so police showed up on 27 May, a Sunday. A police report says officers helped her lower her stereo’s bass and warned her. But officers say they came back less than two hours later being called again.

This, time they cited her under the city’s noise ordinance, and Jones tells the station she gave the officers a message too — via

Orvillecopter, the stuffed helicopter cat, sparks global outrage

Dutch artist Bart Jansen is under attack after images of his flying helicopter cat went viral on the Internet this week.

Jansen created the bizarre cat helicopter after his pet Orville was killed by a car.

According to media reports, Jansen kept Orville’s body in a freezer for about six months, before taking him to a taxidermist and attaching a plastic propeller to each of his four paws. Then he put a remote control engine inside the stomach of the cat, and after a few false starts, the Orvillecopter achieved lift-off — via LA Times

Hitchhiker shot while researching ‘Kindness of America’

A hitchhiker researching a book on The Kindness of America is currently recovering in hospital after a gun-toting truck driver game him a small donation of some searing hot lead.

Ray Dolin, was hitching on Highway 2 in Montana on Saturday as part of a project to produce a memoir on the great things about the open road in the big country.

Dolin was sitting on his backpack, just west of of the town of Glasgow early Saturday evening when a pickup truck slowed down.

However, rather than extending the offer of a ride, the driver extended a gun out of the window and shot Dolin in the arm.

The pickup truck then headed west, leaving Dolin to use his other arm to flag down a passing driver, who then notified the authorities — via

Alleged Romanian Subway Hackers Were Lured to US

The alleged ringleader of a Romanian hacker gang accused of breaking into and stealing payment card data from hundreds of Subway restaurants made news late last month when he was extradited to face charges in the United States. But perhaps the more interesting story is how his two alleged accomplices were lured here by undercover U.S. Secret Service agents, who promised to shower the men with love and riches.

Adrian-Tiberiu Oprea, 27, appeared in a New Hampshire federal court a week ago Tuesday, after being extradited from Constanta, Romania to face charges of hacking into the point-of-sale terminals at more than 150 Subway restaurants and at least 50 other retailers. Oprea was among four men indicted last year on charges of conspiracy to commit computer fraud, wire fraud and access device fraud.

Two of Oprea’s alleged accomplices arrived in Boston one day apart in August 2011, and were arrested immediately after stepping off of their respective flights. Previous news stories have noted their arrests and detentions in the United States, but all of the accounts I read neglected to mention one very interesting fact: Both men entered the country of their own volition — via

Zombie bullets fly off US shelves after wave of undead attacks

Special ammunition optimised for fighting zombies is selling like hot cakes in the USA, according to reports, following sensational media coverage of incidents involving flesh-eating and similar undead-esque behaviour.

In particular, fears of an imminent zombie plague were stoked by the recent case of Rudy Eugene. The 31-year-old was shot dead by police officers in Miami last month while chewing on another man’s face — presumably in an attempt to get at his brain. Other vaguely similar incidents have been dredged up and conflated with this by various media outlets to produce a tenuous undead-apocalypse theme.

All this has apparently been extremely fortunate for US ammo maker Hornady, which last October brought out its Zombie Max line of cartridges (make dead permanent). We hear courtesy of WWJ Detroit that Zombie Max rounds are flying off the gun-shop shelves — via

‘Truman Show’ Delusion Becoming More Common

Nicholas Marzano believes he’s the subject of a secret reality show, and everyone in his town of Hillside, Illinois is in on it. He’s suing HBO in federal court for, in his words, filming and broadcasting a hidden camera reality show depicting the day-to-day activities of plaintiff without his consent. His suit, filed in April, alleges that HBO has hidden cameras throughout his home, installed controlling devices in his car, enlisted the help of local police, and recruited actors to portray attorneys, government and law enforcement officials, physicians, employers, prospective employers, family, friends, neighbours, and co-workers, all so that their show about his life can continue. Marzano also says HBO is keeping him from getting a job or paying his bills, so that he will be forced to remain on the show.

He appears to be a perfect example of what psychiatrist brothers Joel and Ian Gold describe, in a paper published this week in the journal Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, as Truman Show delusion — sufferers believe they are the ‘star’ of a reality television show secretly broadcasting their daily life, much like the main character in Peter Weir’s film The Truman Show. Between the movie’s 1998 release and 2006, they saw five patients with the delusion, and news reports from around the world since then have turned up even more disturbing cases. With the increasing popularity of YouTube and reality TV, the Golds think the disorder is on the rise. Truman Show delusion may be the early 21st century’s paranoia du jour — via

‘Cleaning fairy’ breaks into houses, leaves cleaning bill

Police have identified a real life cleaning fairy — who may be flapping her wings into a jail cell.

The woman broke into a Westlake home, did some light cleaning, then left a bill.

The family thought a cleaning service sent someone to the wrong house, but the cleaning fairy told them it was no mistake, and they better pay up.

Sherry Bush has re-told the story more times than she can remember, and every neighbour wants to know about the cleaning woman who took the sign on her front door a bit too literally — via

DNR officers spot man tied to a tree in Wayside Park

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officers looking for fishing violators found more than they bargained for as they boated past the riverbank of Wayside Park.

The officers spotted a man was sitting in a sling with his wrists and ankles tied to a tree in the Ramsey park 10 May shortly after 5.00pm.

The man was blindfolded, wearing jean shorts, a black do rag and had his genitals exposed.

Ramsey police officers were called in to search for the man, but he appeared to have left the area where they found the sling, which was in a no trespassing area of the park.

They later found the man, identified as Alan David Petrusson, Pillager, walking along the riverbank.

Although Petrusson claimed to have been just resting in the sling and that he did not realise he was exposed, police think he may have been there for anonymous sex, according to Ramsey Police Chief Jim Way — via

Cops: Man tried to rob Lowes store; from nearby nudist colony

Investigators said they arrested Milton Hodges after a crime spree in Osceola County on Wednesday.

Deputies said Hodges first tried to rob a Lowes store on Pleasant Hill Road. They said he attacked a cashier in the garden section and tried to steal some cash from the register.

He demanded he open the cash register. When he didn’t, he put a knife or what he thought was scissors up to his neck. The cashier got away, Twis Lizasuain with the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office said — via

Driver beaten after car veers into bikers

A Prius driver who was using his cell phone to record footage of a pack of motorcyclists veered into them Sunday morning, prompting some of the bikers to beat him up on a San Mateo County freeway, the California Highway Patrol reported.

The incident unfolded just after 8.00am as several motorcycle clubs cruised on Harley-Davidsons and other bikes in the fast lane of northbound Highway 101 near Belmont, between Ralston Avenue and West Hillsdale Boulevard.

CHP Officer Art Montiel said the driver of the white Prius, who was identified only as a 19-year-old from San Jose, was one lane over as he video-recorded. Apparently distracted, he veered right into the third lane, overcorrected and crossed back into the fast lane, hitting a motorcycle, Montiel said.

The Prius, he said, bounced off the 4-foot dividing wall and took down a second motorcycle before coming to a stop. Witnesses then reported seeing bikers beating the Prius driver, who later told investigators that he was threatened with a knife as well — via

The Secret Meeting that Changed Rap Music and Destroyed a Generation

Quickly after the meeting began, one of my industry colleagues (who shall remain nameless like everyone else) thanked us for attending. He then gave the floor to a man who only introduced himself by first name and gave no further details about his personal background. I think he was the owner of the residence but it was never confirmed. He briefly praised all of us for the success we had achieved in our industry and congratulated us for being selected as part of this small group of decision makers. At this point I begin to feel slightly uncomfortable at the strangeness of this gathering. The subject quickly changed as the speaker went on to tell us that the respective companies we represented had invested in a very profitable industry which could become even more rewarding with our active involvement. He explained that the companies we work for had invested millions into the building of privately owned prisons and that our positions of influence in the music industry would actually impact the profitability of these investments. I remember many of us in the group immediately looking at each other in confusion. At the time, I didn’t know what a private prison was but I wasn’t the only one. Sure enough, someone asked what these prisons were and what any of this had to do with us. We were told that these prisons were built by privately owned companies who received funding from the government based on the number of inmates. The more inmates, the more money the government would pay these prisons. It was also made clear to us that since these prisons are privately owned, as they become publicly traded, we’d be able to buy shares. Most of us were taken back by this. Again, a couple of people asked what this had to do with us. At this point, my industry colleague who had first opened the meeting took the floor again and answered our questions. He told us that since our employers had become silent investors in this prison business, it was now in their interest to make sure that these prisons remained filled. Our job would be to help make this happen by marketing music which promotes criminal behaviour, rap being the music of choice. He assured us that this would be a great situation for us because rap music was becoming an increasingly profitable market for our companies, and as employee, we’d also be able to buy personal stocks in these prisons. Immediately, silence came over the room. You could have heard a pin drop. I remember looking around to make sure I wasn’t dreaming and saw half of the people with dropped jaws. My daze was interrupted when someone shouted, Is this a f****** joke? At this point things became chaotic. Two of the men who were part of the unfamiliar group grabbed the man who shouted out and attempted to remove him from the house. A few of us, myself included, tried to intervene. One of them pulled out a gun and we all backed off. They separated us from the crowd and all four of us were escorted outside. My industry colleague who had opened the meeting earlier hurried out to meet us and reminded us that we had signed agreement and would suffer the consequences of speaking about this publicly or even with those who attended the meeting. I asked him why he was involved with something this corrupt and he replied that it was bigger than the music business and nothing we’d want to challenge without risking consequences. We all protested and as he walked back into the house I remember word for word the last thing he said, It’s out of my hands now. Remember you signed an agreement. He then closed the door behind him. The men rushed us to our cars and actually watched until we drove off — via

Rabid mountain lion in attack mode no match for Chino Valley man and his frying pan

If someone told you they killed a rabid mountain lion with a frying pan, would you believe it?

Chino Valley resident Brandon Arnold has such a story, and he has witnesses to prove it.

Arnold, 24, his girlfriend Tessa Gerdes and seven of their Chino Valley friends, including three children, were camping 4 May at a remote spot on the Tonto National Forest, near the Verde River off Bloody Basin Road, when the story of a lifetime unfolded.

They were getting ready to make breakfast at about 6.45am when a large animal jumped out of the bushes onto the back of Arnold’s dog Apollo, a 90-pound lab-pit bull mix.

It was hard to tell what it was when it jumped out of there covered with grass and smelling like a skunk, Arnold’s friend Donald Jones said. I thought it was somebody’s dog, so I was just pissed off somebody brought a mean dog to camp.

Jones grabbed the neck of both the animals to try to pull them apart.

That’s when they all figured out the other animal wasn’t a dog.

Jones let go real fast.

I started screaming at the top of my lungs, ‘Holy (bleep), it’s a mountain lion!’ Arnold recalled.

The lion ran into the mesquite bushes and Apollo ran after it while the men frantically looked for the nearest weapon. Jones grabbed a camping table and Arnold grabbed a 14-inch cast-iron skillet heating up on the propane stove. Arnold got to the lion and dog fight first and did what he had to do to save Apollo.

The first time I had a clear shot I just swung the pan and hit him right on the head, Arnold said. It was like a cartoon — he just kind of stopped and I hit him again. He got stiff and fell over — via

Kodak kept weapons-grade uranium and nuclear reactor in upstate New York

Kodak has confirmed it used weapons-grade uranium and housed a fully functioning nuclear reactor in an underground lab near Greece, New York for 30 years, according to news reports.

And according to the Democrat and Chronicle, almost nobody in the community knew about it — until now.

The small nuclear reactor was housed in a 14- by 24-foot concrete room beneath the basement-level of Building 82 in Kodak Park.

Described as resembling Robby the Robot from a 1950s science fiction movie by the Democrat and Chronicle, it contained 3.5 pounds of highly-enriched uranium.

A spokesman for the film and camera company and former scientist for the firm told CNN that such an amount was less than one-tenth of the amount necessary to make a crude nuclear device — via

Tsunami survivor claims Harley-Davidson found in Canada

The owner has been found of a Harley-Davidson that drifted to Canada after being swept out to sea in the 2011 Japanese tsunami.

Details from the motorcycle’s licence plate helped to locate Ikuo Yokoyama.

According to CBC News, Mr Yokoyama lost his home and three family members in the tsunami.

The shop that sold the motorcycle to Mr Yokoyama is now hoping to ship the Harley-Davidson back to Japan and restore it.

The motorcycle is among the first items in a wave of debris heading to the west coast of North America. Most of the debris is expected to arrive in 2013 — via

Chainsaw and samurai sword used in neighbours’ clash over loud music

A neighbourhood dispute over loud music and erratic driving has escalated into a bloody brawl in which a chainsaw partially severed a man’s arm.

Doctors are attempting to reattach the arm of Mark Jorgensen, 29, after the altercation in in Fenton Close, Minto, last night.

Another man, Troy Thornton, 26, lost a finger in the dispute. His sister, Nicole Thornton, claimed he was attacked with a samurai sword — via

Motorcycle washed up in BC may be Japanese tsunami debris

A beachcomber on British Columbia’s Haida Gwaii islands has discovered what may be the first piece of debris from the Japanese tsunami to arrive in Canada.

Peter Mark was riding his ATV, exploring an isolated beach on Graham Island on 18 April, when he made a spectacular find.

You just never know what you’re going to stumble upon when you go for a drive, and lo and behold you just come across something that’s out of this world, he said.

Mark found a large white cube, like the back part of a moving truck, just below the high tide mark.

The door was ripped off it and I could see a motorcycle tire sticking out, he said. So I went closer and looked inside and saw a Harley-Davidson motorcycle— via

Utah men arrested for setting deadly booby traps along popular hiking trail

Two Utah men were arrested for planting deadly, medieval-style booby traps along a hiking trail popular with families and college students, police said.

Benjamin Steven Rutkowski, 19, and Kai Matthew Christensen, 21, set the traps inside a crude shelter along a trail in Provo Canyon last week, the Utah County Sheriff’s Office said.

Both traps were rigged with trip wire, police said.

One was designed to swing a spiked ball at the head of whoever tripped the wire, while the other would have caused someone to fall onto sharpened spikes placed in the ground, police said — via

Forest Service may blow up frozen cows

It may take explosives to dislodge a group of cows that wandered into an old ranger cabin high in the Rocky Mountains, then died and froze solid when they couldn’t get out.

The carcasses were discovered by two Air Force Academy cadets when they snow-shoed up to the cabin in late March. Rangers believe the animals sought shelter during a snowstorm and got stuck and weren’t smart enough to find their way out.

The cabin is located near the Conundrum Hot Springs, a nine-mile hike from the Aspen area in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area — via