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8 People Arrested While Dressed as Superheroes

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Be warned, superhero wannabes: Squeezing into a pair of tights and grabbing the nearest cape before going out to fight for justice will more likely get you incarcerated than applauded these days. Plus, as a few of the bolder entries on this list found out the hard way, suiting up certainly won’t get you off the hook for breaking and entering, drug possession, or driving while intoxicated.

1. Spider-Man Scales The Sears Tower

Donning a custom-made Spider-Man costume and packing an assortment of suction cups and rock-climbing equipment, Dan Goodwin set out to ascend the 110-story Chicago skyscraper (now known as the Willis Tower) on May 25, 1981. Seven hours later, he succeeded … only to be immediately booked for trespassing, and interrogated by the city’s Fire Commissioner. 

2. Batman Arrested For Obstructing A Crime Scene

Mark Williams thought he’d help a local police investigation by imitating the dark knight himself last October. Instead, the 31-year-old Michigan resident found himself incarcerated for hindering a police investigation. Adding insult to injury, his costume was confiscated in the process.

3. Batman Arrested For Stealing Power Tools

Inhibiting law enforcement is bad enough, but some Batman fans have even been taken downtown for petty theft. Case in point: one Stan Worby of Bradford, England. Worby had previously made headlines for dragging a wanted criminal into his local police station. Just over a month later, he was accused of burgling $1200 worth of power tools from a nearby garage and arrested accordingly. After he pled not guilty, he was released on bail.

4. Captain America And The Badly-Placed Burrito

At a costume party at a bar in Melbourne, Florida, Dr. Raymond Adamcik arrived clad in a Captain America muscle suit … complete with a burrito wedged below the belt. After he made a series of lewd suggestions pertaining thereto, the police were called to intervene. That he was caught trying to dispose of a joint at the time didn’t help his case. 

5. Banana Boy’s Slippery Situation

Actor Chris Phelps and company found themselves in trouble with the law when a choreographed street fight they’d been filming that starred Phelps’ cowardly “Banana Boy” character and a masked bandit looked a little too real for local authorities.

6. Super-Heroin

Not even the Man of Steel has a clean track record. A suspicious character sporting a Superman costume and waving at passing traffic in Wasilla, Alaska was questioned by a state trooper who discovered “an undisclosed amount of heroin” on his person. 

7. Phoenix Jones Lands In The Big House

By day, he’s Benjamin Fodor. By night, he’s Phoenix Jones, a masked crime-fighter roaming the streets of Seattle. And in 2011, his decision to use pepper spray to break up a street fight landed him in the slammer for assault, as the following clip explains.

After spending seven hours behind bars, Jones made bail and his case was eventually dropped. “I’m just like everybody else,” Fodor says. “The only difference is I decided to stop crime in my neighborhood.”

8. Scottish Batman Slapped With DUI With Drunk Superman Riding Shotgun

Anstruther is ordinarily a quiet little town in the Scottish lowlands. But on August 15, 2006, police arrested a driver and his passenger—adorned in Batman and Superman gear, respectively—after both failed a mandatory breathalyzer test. In the words of an anonymous spokesman, “This is a real fall from grace for two superheroes. I am sure [drunk] driving is not allowed in Gotham City.” 

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This Just In
Little Ross—a Tiny Island in Scotland With a Murderous History—Can Be Yours for $425,000
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Just off Scotland’s southwest coast sits the island of Little Ross. While picturesque, the remote speck of land comes with a tragic backstory: the 1960 murder of a lighthouse keeper, who died at the hands of a colleague. Now, decades after the tragedy made national headlines, the Independent reports that Little Ross is officially on the market and accepting offers over £325,000 (a little under $424,000).

The 29-acre island has a natural harbor, a rocky beach, and a craggy green coastline. There's also a six-bedroom cottage and several ramshackle barns, all of which are included in the purchase. A wind turbine and solar panels provide power (although everyone knows that good ghost stories are best enjoyed by candlelight).

What’s not for sale is the island’s 19th century lighthouse, the scene of lighthouse keeper Hugh Clarke’s 1960 murder. (His assistant, Robert Dickson, was found guilty, and received life imprisonment.)

“Since automation in the late 1960s the lighthouse no longer requires full-time staffing, and only the lighthouse and Sighting Tower are maintained by the Northern Lighthouse Board,” the island's listing states. “It is anticipated that the Northern Lighthouse Board and the purchasers will share the use, and future maintenance of the jetty wall.”

Since Ross Island is only accessible by boat or air, the listing advises that potential buyers be “proficient seamen” (or have access to a helicopter). Fit the bill, and in the market for an unconventional getaway? Check out the pictures below, or visit the island’s listing for more information.

The island of Little Ross, which sits off the Meikle Ross headland on Scotland’s south coast.
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The island of Little Ross, which sits off the Meikle Ross headland on Scotland’s south coast.
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[h/t Independent]

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The Reason Police Officers Tap Your Taillight When They Pull You Over
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Asking a driver for their license and registration is common procedure from police officers during traffic stops. There’s another practice that was once standard across the force but is more of a mystery to the people being pulled over: While approaching a driver’s window, officers will sometimes touch a car's taillight. It's a behavior that dates back decades, though there's no reason to be concerned if it happens at your next traffic stop.

Before cameras were installed on the dashboards of most police cars, tapping the taillight was an inconspicuous way for officers to leave behind evidence of the encounter, according to The Law Dictionary. If something were to happen to the officer during the traffic stop, their interaction with the driver could be traced back to the fingerprints left on the vehicle. This would help other police officers track down a missing member of the force even without video proof of a crime.

The action also started as a way for officers to spook drivers before reaching their window. A pulled-over motorist with a car full of illegal drugs or weapons might scramble to hide any incriminating materials before the officer arrives. The surprise of hearing a knock on their taillight might disrupt this process, increasing their likelihood of getting caught.

Today the risks of this strategy are thought to outweigh the benefits. Touching a taillight poses an unnecessary distraction for officers, not to mention it can give away their position, making them more vulnerable to foul play. And with dash cams now standard in most squad cars, documenting each incident with fingerprints isn’t as necessary as it once was. It’s for these reasons that some police agencies now discourage taillight tapping. But if you see it at your next traffic stop, that doesn’t mean the officer is extra suspicious of you—just that it’s a hard habit to break.

[h/t The Law Dictionary]

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