Weird news 9/11/16
Weird news of the week.
These are the crime stories making headlines today, September 9, 2016 …
- Police in Ohio have posted shocking photos of two adults, who they believe overdosed on heroin, passed out with a four-year-old boy in the backseat. The City of East Liverpool, Ohio, shared the photos on their Facebook page of an incapacitated driver, later identified as James Acord, who officers say had an unhinged appearance and slurred speech on Thursday. One officer reached into the vehicle, turned it off, and removed the keys just as Acord attempted to drive away with his passenger, Rhonda Pasek, and a four-year-old boy in the backseat, later identified as Pasek’s son.The officer said Acord eventually passed out as well. Police said they hope the photos send a message to drug users to think twice before abusing drugs. [WREG]
- A Maryland man has been sentenced to life without parole for fatally shooting the driver of an ice cream truck while kids waited in line. The Frederick News-Postreports that a jury convicted Larnell Lyles, 28, of first-degree murder and other offenses in the June 2015 slaying of 22-year-old Brandon Brown outside a subsidized-housing complex in Frederick. Lyles said in a recorded interview with police that he shot at Brown, but thought he missed him. Lyles also told police that he was afraid for his life because Brown and others had been stalking him and harassing his family members over a $20 debt. [The Baltimore Sun]
- Investigators are raising questions about the death of a Rita Maze, the Great Falls woman who reported being kidnapped at a Montana rest stop and spending hours in the trunk of a car. Maze’s body was found early Wednesday near Spokane International Airport in Washington state. She had been shot, but the medical examiner listed the cause of death as pending. The Spokesman-Reviewreports that court documents say Maze was in the trunk with a handgun, two spent shell casings, her purse, and keys next to her. Maze’s daughter, Rochelle, said her mother called Tuesday evening saying she had been overpowered by a man who had her gun. Authorities say that they are not ruling out suicide. [Fox News]
- A Vietnamese man is recovering from a penis-reattachment operation after his mistress’s husband allegedly sliced off his organ. Nguyen Van Huan, 29, was stalking his wife after he began suspecting that she was having an affair,Thanh Nien Daily reported. He allegedly caught her with an unnamed 32-year-old man at a hotel on Monday, where he attacked him and chopped off his member. Doctors have described the man’s condition as “stable,” but say that they will not know for weeks how much function he will recover. The penis was found two hours later near the hotel after the victim’s relatives convinced Huan, a stone sculptor, to reveal its location. Huan is being investigated on charges of “deliberately inflicting injuries.” [News.com.au]
A Florida felon with the last name“Coffee” has been charged with attacking a fellow inmate with hot coffee, according to an arrest report. Investigators say that Andrew Coffee, 53, admitted to pouring the hot brew on his 21-year-old victim, saying that it was “better than actually ‘beating his ass.” Coffee, who is being held without bond in Vero Beach jail following his arrest last year after he allegedly tried to kill a sheriff’s deputy, has a long rap sheet and has served more than 11 years in state prison. [The Smoking Gun]
- Two parents in Baltimore have been charged with manslaughter following the death of a two-year-old who police say ingested methadone. Alvin Thompson and Sinead McNair, both 25, were taken into custody Tuesday and face charges including child abuse resulting in death, neglect of a minor, and reckless endangerment of two-year-old Korri Thompson. Baltimore police were called to the University of Maryland’s pediatric unit on August 13 following reports that an unconscious baby had been brought in to the hospital, police said. Baby Korri was revived and transferred to the intensive-care unit, where she remained until she died on August 24. [The Baltimore Sun]
- A swim instructor in Albany has been charged with possessing child pornography after sheriff’s deputies noticed pictures of nude underage girls scrolling on his computer. The Albany County Sheriff’s Office says deputies were responding to a noise complaint when they saw the pictures on the computer of William Moyer, 51, at his home in New Scotland early Saturday. Investigators seized several computers, external hard drives, and other digital devices from Moyer, who gives swim lessons to young children in a nearby town. Police say Moyer has confessed to downloading child pornography for several years. [News 10]
- A man was murdered by a machete-wielding intruder who told his eight-year-old daughter to “stay in bed because he was going to kill her dad.” Police found Bob Tester, 35, dead in his living room in a pool of blood about 7 A.M. Tuesday with an ax and bags of marijuana nearby. His eight-year-old daughter told Spokane County sheriff’s deputies she was in bed with her father when a man entered the house carrying a “sword,” according to court documents. The girl later told deputies that Bob Tester grew marijuana for dispensaries. Tester had recently posted a mysterious Facebook status hinting at turmoil in his life. [CBS News]
In March 2016, Patricia Ann Spann, 43, married Misty Velvet Dawn Spann, 25, in Comanche County, Oklahoma. The union flew under the eyes of the law until recently, when, as WILX reports, officials discovered that Patricia is the biological mother of Misty.
As detailed in court documents, Patricia and Misty’s nuptials now find both mom and daughter charged with one count of felony incest, a crime that could get them each 10 years behind bars. Marrying a close relative is illegal in Oklahoma, regardless of whether or not the parties involved are having sex. That particular detail has not been disclosed (yet).
Adding further zest to this saga of incest is that, as WDSU reports, in 2008, Patricia Spann wed the oldest of her sons. Fifteen months later, the young man sought and received a legal annulment. Patricia’s current marriage appears to be the first with one of her same-sex children, however.
According to the New York Daily News, the two women had previously been estranged for many years. Back when Misty was still a child, Patricia lost custody of her three offspring. Misty’s paternal grandmother then raised the girl to adulthood. In 2014, the mom and daughter reunited and, according to Patricia, they just “hit it off.”
A 2016 child-welfare investigation led authorities to discover the nature of Patricia and Misty’s relationship. Patricia said she didn’t think the legality would be an issue, because for some reason she is no longer listed as the mother on Misty’s birth certificate. Patricia was incorrect.
Bond has been set for each of the seemingly nonblushing brides at $10,000 apiece.
Three men have been charged in China, in the northern Shanxi province, in the murders of two women for the purpose of selling their corpses for use in wedding ceremonies.
An Ancient Tradition
“Ghost weddings,” a 3,000 year old practice, are technically illegal in China, having been prohibited under Communism since 1949, although they are still sometimes practiced in the more rural and superstitious country provinces. In those areas, there are reportedly many more men than women. A lot of professions are dangerous, such as coal mining, and the villages remote and difficult to travel to, so men often die early and unmarried. The country’s preference for male children and the enforcement of the One Child Policy led to the abortion of female children and a preponderance of boys.
All these bachelors are inconvenient for superstitious families that believe that a man dying single can put a curse on the family. It’s also thought that when a man dies unmarried that it makes the family tree incomplete. It’s not uncommon in circumstances when a man has passed away unmarried for a “ghost wedding” to be performed in which the dead man is married to the corpse of a recently deceased women. There is a black market for exhumed female bodies, and a fresh one can fetch up to 100,000 yuan (approximately $15,000), according to Shanghaiist.com. When they’re not so fresh, skeletons are reinforced with wire before being dressed. The cadavers are dressed in formal wedding clothing and buried alongside their deceased grooms, after a symbolic wedding ceremony, hopefully ensuring that bad luck does not befall the surviving family.
In some cases, the body is exhumed by permission of the surviving relatives and paired with the deceased bachelor through a specialized matchmaking service. The family of the “bride” will provide a symbolic dowry for the ceremony, featuring valuables such as a house or jewelry, but made of paper.
Not every family in need of a “ghost bride” uses a human corpse, however. Some will fashion a small statue of a woman or even make one out of dough, using beans for the eyes. Some of the more superstition villagers, however, feel that is not good enough to keep bad luck away from the family, and insist on a real dead body.
The demand for brides can be high, and the grave robbers sometimes are unable to keep up. Shanghaiist reports that 15 corpses have been exhumed and stolen from just one village, Dongbao, in the past three years. It’s a situation reminiscent of the“resurrection men” of the nineteenth century, who turned to murder to provide cadavers for anatomy teachers.
When Grave Robbing Isn’t Good Enough
In the recent murder case, Mr. Ma and Mr. An pretended to be matchmakers, preying upon intellectually disabled women, promising them that they could find them husbands. Instead, they drugged them and murdered them.
The third man who was charged, Mr. Yang, was the driver who transported the bodies out to the rural provinces where they were used in the wedding ceremonies. He was driving the vehicle when it was pulled over, resulting in the men’s arrests when a dead body was found inside. Ma initially lied to the police, telling them the body was that of a relative. Investigators detained all three men and were able to figure out that Ma was not telling the truth.
Ma confessed to the murder, and also to another similar one back in February. He is facing murder charges, but the other two suspects are being charged for the lesser crimes of human trafficking and concealing a murder.
If you want to know what not to do while on the run from the law, then make sure you pay attention to 42-year-old Mack Yearwood’s story.
The Huffington Post said the fugitive thought it would be a good idea to use his very own wanted poster, featuring his mug shot from another case, for his Facebook profile picture. According to the Stuart Police department’s page, “If you are wanted by the police, it’s probably not a good idea to use the “Wanted of the Week” poster of yourself as your profile pic.”
WPBF reported that authorities were called to a residence in Stuart, Florida, Monday night for a battery complaint. By the time they arrived, the suspect, Yearwood, was long gone.
Detectives told the news station when they got back to headquarters, they began to do a little digging on Yearwood. That’s when they found out he wasn’t just wanted for their incident, but he reportedly had outstanding warrants from another county as well.
Sergeant Heather Rothe told WPBF that her team also searched social media, and that’s when they found a profile believed to be Yearwood’s. Rothe said, “I did chuckle, yes,” simply because he was so easy to track down.
In fact, it was only 24 hours later, according to ABC News, when Yearwood was in handcuffs at his brother’s home. The Stuart Police said he didn’t have any pants on at the time of his arrest, so investigators were kind enough to let him get dressed. Police said, “Mr. Mack must have forgotten that his bag of marijuana was still in the pocket.” He did have a shirt on though, which appeared to have blood on it.
You can watch Yearwood’s arrest video below:
Due to that bag of weed, a drug charge was tacked onto the other charges, including probation violations. It’s unclear at this point if he has representation.
A man searching for Pokémon has found a dead body on the waterfront in Singapore.
Noor Azmi, 29, had been searching for water-based Pokémon characters in the Singaporean Woodlands Waterfront Park when he found the body of a female instead. “Early morning finding Pokemon. Suddenly find dead body,” Azmi wrote on Facebook. “Rest in peace whoever you are.” Azmi, who is a website designer, reportedly took down images of the dead body after several people commented about insensitivity, but the post had already been shared over 7,000 times. [Asian Correspondent]
A California man has been charged with striking a teen who was playing Pokémon Go.
Jayson Louis Lingen, 57, has been charged with one count of assault with a deadly weapon, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. Prosecutors allege that on the evening of August 17, Lingen yelled at a 17-year-old who was playing the virtual reality game in Long Beach. Lingen then allegedly hit the player in the head with a metal pole. If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of 13 years in state prison. [Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office]
France doesn’t want Pokémon Go in schools.
The country’s education minister, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, said at a news conference in Paris that she wants to meet with Niantic Inc. to explain why she believes that the creatures do not belong in the classroom. Vallaud-Belkacem said that putting “legendary” characters into an environment where children are present poses a security risk because it encourages nonstudents to walk into the schools. France remains in an official state of emergency following terrorist attacks in Paris and Nice. [AP]
Driver playing Pokémon Go crashes his SUV into a parked police cruiser.
New Jersey police say an unnamed driver, 42, was playing the game on his cell phone at around 3:40 A.M. Saturday in Jersey City when he crashed his vehicle into a parked police cruiser. No one was in the police car at the time, and the driver wasn’t injured. However, the Jersey City man was cited for careless driving and other motor-vehicle violations. [AP]
Japan has experienced its first Pokémon Go–related fatality.
A woman was run over by a driver in Tokushima Prefecture in what is believed to be the country’s first death related to Pokémon Go. Farmer Keiji Goo said he was playing the game while driving in Tokushima on Tuesday when he hit two female pedestrians at around 7:35 P.M. Sachiko Nakanishi, 72, was killed, and Kayoko Ikawa, 60, was badly injured. Investigators say that Goo initially told them that he had been looking at the clock on his phone, but then later admitted that he had been playing Pokémon Go. [Japan Times]
A homeowner has claimed that Pokémon Go players roaming the streets “like zombies” have left him unable to sleep for weeks.
The unnamed man lives near the memorial gardens in Hornsea, East Yorkshire, which has three designated PokéStops, where Pokémon Go players gather to search for eggs, balls, and potions. The homeowner said: “Our whole life has been transformed. Every weekend we are dreading it. We haven’t had a good night’s sleep in six weeks because of the noise and the traffic. It’s just constant, 24/7.” The man also claimed that his car and other parked vehicles have been damaged by all the traffic driving down the narrow street. [Daily Mail Online]
Cops have ticketed a Pokémon Go fan who was playing after hours at a Brooklyn park.
Police handed Albert Wang, a 37-year-old stockbroker, a summons when he was caught playing Pokémon Wednesday at around 1:50 A.M. in a park in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. Wang, who lives nearby, told police that his trespassing was “an innocent mistake” and claimed that he had been en route to a “gym” where Pokémon train and do battle. The gym is located at a Revolutionary War memorial that contains human remains. “The rule was written on the sign in fine print. It was easy to miss it,” he said. Wang has promised to follow the rules in future. [New York Daily News]
Police camera captures Pokémon Go player being mistaken for a bank robber.
The Iowa City Police Department has released body camera footage of what happened when an Iowa State University football player was playing Pokémon Go in the park near his home – and turned around to see four police officers pointing their guns at him. The police can be heard asking the man to remove his backpack and lift up his shirt so that they could check his waistband before explaining to him that they were looking for a “large black man” who tried to rob a bank three blocks away. “It’s probably not you,” a female officer says, “but we have to check.” The Pokémon player remained calm and went on his way a few minutes later. [Vice]
Main photo: Facebook/Azmi Suarez