The Weird Week in Review
Alfie the Canine Arsonist
A hungry dog in Llanfairfechan, Wales set fire to a home and caused Â£6,000 in damage. Paul Gregson, his wife, and two sons escaped the burning house just after midnight Tuesday. Alfie apparently was looking for something to eat when he jumped on the stove and turned on a burner. A chip fryer on top heated up and started the fire. Smoke alarms woke the family up and they were able to evacuate the home. Three-year-old Alfie is a flat-coated retriever, a breed Gregson says is "slow to mature".
Thief Takes Van with Lion Inside
A thief in Wuppertal, Germany made off with a Mercedes Transporter owned by Circus Probst, apparently unaware that a lion was in the back. The van was recovered Wednesday morning with Caesar still inside. It is not yet known whether the presence of the lion led to vehicle being crashed and abandoned. It was found with the motor still running. Police who had the van towed away were also unaware of the lion in the back. Caesar was finally returned to the circus about twelve hours after the theft, and is reported to be fine.
25 Middle-school Students Arrested in Food Fight
A food fight broke out last Thursday at the Calumet middle school campus of Perspectives Charter Schools in Chicago. A campus police officer called for backup and Chicago police responded. By the end of the day, 25 students aged 11 to 15 were arrested and taken to jail for reckless conduct. The students were released to their parents and suspended from school for two days. Parents are questioning the decision to arrest the children. Erica Russell, the mother of two girls who were arrested, said:
"I was all for some other kind of punishment, but not jail. Who hasn't had a food fight?"
Shark Gives Shark Caesarean Section
A shark at Kelly Tarlton's Underwater World in New Zealand was carrying four baby sharks when she was bitten into by another shark. The young were released into the water from the hole in her abdomen. Staff at the aquarium had no idea the shark was pregnant, and said the attack probably saved the baby sharks' lives. If they had been born naturally in the same tank, stingrays and other adult sharks would have most likely eaten the babies. In this case, the newborns were quickly captured and isolated. They will eventually be released into the wild. The mother shark survived the incident.
Burglar Falls Asleep While Picking Lock
An unnamed 35-year-old man was found sound asleep at the entrance to a shopping center in Perth, Australia. He had a lock-breaking wire in his hand. Keys found on the man fit a nearby car that contained drugs stolen from a pharmacy. Samuel Dinnison of the Perth police department said he apparently fell asleep while picking the lock.
"He obviously had a long night, whatever he was doing, and that got the better of him," Dinnison said.
Grizzly Bear Eats Airplane
An unnamed Alaskan bush pilot went on a fishing trip and neglected to wash down his plane afterward. The 1958 Piper Cub was just too much temptation for a passing grizzly bear to bear. The bear tore apart the wood-and-fabric plane looking for the fish he smelled, to the point of chewing on the tires! When the pilot returned to find the plane in tatters, he radioed for supplies to repair the plane: duct tape, cellophane, and two tires. He wrapped the plane in duct tape and flew home. The story includes a picture of the plane after repair.
Wedding Ring Found in Ten Tons of Trash
Bridget Pericolo put her wedding ring in a disposable cup, which no one should ever do. Her husband Angelo threw the cup in the trash. By the time the couple realized their mistake, the trash had been picked up by the Parsippany, New Jersey sanitation crew. The Pericolos, who have been married for 55 years, contacted the supervisor, who told them to go to the dump. Three sanitation workers sifted through garbage estimated to weigh about ten tons until they found the Pericolo's trash bag, with the ring inside.