Footsie Fetish gets Guy in Trouble

Here is a fellow with a strange and freaky fetish,  he pleaded guilty Thursday to stealing more than 1,500 pairs of girls’ shoes from area schools in a deal that calls for prosecutors to recommend probation.   Erik D. Heinrich, 26, of Kenosha pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary and was scheduled for sentencing Oct. 23. He told police he did it for sexual gratification.

He was arrested May 24 after a security video showed him entering North High School on May 20 and leaving with some items. Police tracked him through his vehicle registration, searched his home and a rented storage unit and found the shoes.   Police have said Heinrich worked for a cable company and collected keys to the schools as he responded to calls. He used the keys to burglarize three Waukesha public high schools and one middle school six times during the past two years, according to a criminal complaint.

Police discovered the break-in at North High School after several female students reported that the locks on their lockers had been cut and their shoes stolen.   Heinrich has a previous shoe-stealing conviction, in 2005, that was dismissed at prosecutors’ request after he completed a year of probation, counseling and 50 hours of community service.

Mr. Yuk has Lawyers!?

It turns out Mr. Yuk, the scary green poison control symbol, has lawyers and they are not very happy about what’s happening in St. Paul.   Local City Council member Paul Bakken has put Mr. Yuk-like faces on lawn signs opposing an upcoming vote to amend the city charter. Attorneys for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, which holds the copyright on Mr. Yuk, weren’t amused.

“It’s just that this guy is using Mr. Yuk inappropriately and illegally. He’s broken copyright laws. … It’s clearly a violation,” said Dr. Edward Krenzelok, director of the Pittsburgh Poison Center, which is affiliated with the medical center.   He said Mr. Yuk was created more than 30 years ago to warn children away from dangerous substances. He said he has asked the medical center’s lawyers to straighten things out.

“It doesn’t hurt us,” Krenzelok acknowledged. “It’s just inappropriate use, and we have to control the use to maintain our copyright.”   Bakken, a lawyer, defended his use of Mr. Yuk. He said federal law allows some use of copyrighted material for satire or academic criticism. He said he found Yuk-like images spread across the Internet.

“It appeared to be in the public domain,” he said. “If this is genuinely harming the good work that they do, I sincerely apologize.”  In my opinion lawn poison is still poison so I am not sure what the problem is, watch the vintage commercial from 1971 to see Mr. Yuk in action.


 

Cops Don’t Like When you Touch their Donuts

It’s a hefty price for a pastry: A man accused of stealing a 52-cent doughnut could face up to 30 years in jail.  Authorities said Scott Masters, 41, slipped the doughnut into his sweat shirt without paying, then allegedly pushed away a clerk who tried to stop him as he fled the store.

The push is being treated as minor assault, which transforms a misdemeanour shoplifting charge to a strong-armed robbery with a potential prison term of five to 15 years. But because Masters has a criminal history, prosecutors say they could seek 30 years.

“Strong-arm robbery? Over a doughnut? That’s impossible,” Masters told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch from jail.  He admitted that he took the pastry but denying touching the employee. “There’s no way I would’ve pushed a woman over a doughnut.”

Farmington Police Chief Rick Baker said state law treats the shoplifting and assault as forcibly stealing property. The amount of force and value of the property doesn’t matter.  “It’s not the doughnut,” Baker said. “It’s the assault.”

Masters said he didn’t even get to enjoy his ill-gotten gains: He threw the doughnut away as he fled.   I have a sneaking suspicion this donut belonged to a hungry cop.  Anyways if this guy tucked a donut into his sweatshirt and intended to eat it then he is probably not sane enough to stand trial.

Oh How the French Love to Love

In France a woman who planted a lipstick-laden kiss on an all-white painting by the American artist Cy Twombly went on trial Tuesday, telling the court she had committed an “act of love” – not a crime.

Rindy Sam, a 30-year-old French artist, faced charges of “voluntarily damaging a work of art.” The painting is worth an estimated $2,830,000 and restorers have tried to remove the lipstick smudge from the bone-white canvas using nearly 30 products – to no avail.

Prosecutors, want Sam to pay a $6,400 fine and take a class on good citizenship. The verdict was set for Nov. 16.   Sam was taken into custody after she kissed the painting July 19. It was part of a travelling exhibition on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Avignon.  The painting is owned by collector Yvon Lambert. He was asking for $2,878,000 in damages, which included the value of the painting and the $47,000 restoration cost.

Twombly is known for his abstract paintings combining painting and drawing techniques, repetitive lines and the use of graffiti, letters and words.  Born in Lexington, Va., in 1928, Twombly has lived in Italy for nearly a half-century. He won the prestigious Golden Lion award at the Venice Biennale in 2001.

Tuesday’s trial came as police in Paris jailed five people in connection with the weekend vandalism of a noted painting by French Impressionist Claude Monet, “Le Pont d’Argenteuil.”  Intruders, apparently drunk, broke into Paris’ Orsay Museum early Sunday and punched the renowned work, leaving a nearly 10 centimetre tear. The five were tracked by evidence from museum security cameras, police said. One person admitted to putting a fist in the painting under the influence of alcohol.

The intruders had entered by a back door. Culture Minister Christine Albanel said that apparently one in the group had information about access to the museum for professional reasons and used this information to enter. The minister did not say if any of those detained worked for the museum.  Why am I not surprised this happened in France, the land of love!

Man Gets Screwed

I must confess that this strange story was posted just for the fun headlines it could possibly generate.  German police have arrested a man for stealing more than one million screws from his employers and selling his booty on the Internet, authorities said Friday.

The man – a 33-year-old assembly worker at an unidentified company – squirrelled away screws in a specially designed hiding place and spirited up to 7,000 of them home every day when he left work, police said.   Over a two-year period, he stole some 1.1 million screws with an estimated value of C$155,000, police in the Bavarian city of Wuerzburg said in a statement.

The man allegedly sold the screws over the Internet at discount prices – ultimately alerting police, who wondered where he was getting them.  The man was arrested Wednesday at his Wuerzburg apartment. Police said he acknowledged stealing the screws and was in custody awaiting formal charges

Weird Crime Watch

Here are a few weird, strange tidbits on some truly interesting criminals. 

-Authorities say a man robbing a Colorado bank demanded money by writing a note on one of his own cheques.   Not surprisingly, he was caught shortly afterward. Authorities say Forest Kelly Bissonnette, 27, apparently tried to cover his name on the cheque, then handed the note to a teller September 5 at the Bank of the West in Englewood.   Nearly five thousand dollars U-S was taken.

Surveillance video shows a suspect similar to Bissonnette’s description and a tipster says a man named Forest Kelly claimed he got five thousand dollars in a bank robbery.   Bissonnette remained in federal custody Tuesday after turning himself in Friday.   A public defender was to be appointed for Bissonnette, who doesn’t have a listed phone number and probably has an IQ of 20.

-Here is one that will make you lose your appetite.  Police in Minnesota say a man who robbed a woman of her keys and cellphone took off her shoes and licked her toes.   Commander Kevin Casper calls the attack weird sexual behaviour. Authorities say the 24-year-old woman was leaving work around 1 a.m. Saturday when the 27-year-old suspect approached her and demanded her keys and phone. After that, he removed her shoes. Police say the woman was not hurt.

Police arrested the man a few minutes later about four blocks away.   The woman identified the suspect and police were able to recover her keys and phone.   The man was in custody but it was not clear whether he had been formally charged.

-And now for one that just warms the heart.  A man has been charged with extorting more than $20,000 from his elderly mother by repeatedly threatening to kidnap her beloved cat and demanding ransom, police said.   Garry Lamar, 47, was arrested Friday and released on $200 bail. He has been ordered to stay away from his 78-year-old mother, Mary Lamar Grancher.

He started threatening to kidnap his the cat just over a year ago, after his mother kicked him out of her home, accusing him of abuse, North Kingstown Police Sgt. Daniel Ormond said.   During the past year, Lamar allegedly kidnapped the cat once and made kidnapping threats on an almost weekly basis, Ormond said. Police don’t believe the cat was harmed but are continuing to investigate.   Grancher made at least two dozen payments totalling more than $20,000 in cash and checks to her son. Authorities are still sorting through her financial records to determine the precise amount.

Fake Bomb Scare

Fake_bombAn MIT student wearing what turned out to be a fake bomb was arrested at gunpoint Friday at Logan International Airport and later claimed it was artwork, officials said.  Star Simpson, 19, had a computer circuit board and wiring in plain view over a black hooded sweatshirt she was wearing, said State Police Maj. Scott Pare, the commanding officer at the airport. 

“She said that it was a piece of art and she wanted to stand out on career day,” Pare said at a news conference. “She claims that it was just art, and that she was proud of the art and she wanted to display it.”  Simpson was charged with disturbing the peace and possessing a hoax device. A not guilty plea was entered for her and she was released on $750 bail.

During the hearing, Simpson smiled as she entered wearing a T-shirt and sandals. After she posted bail, she left in a taxi with a man who identified himself as her boyfriend, but neither would answer more questions from reporters.  Prosecutor Wayne Margolis had requested $5,000 bail, saying Simpson showed a total disregard for the situation she was in — an airport after the 2001 terrorist attacks.  She definately should have thought more about this one and is lucky she wasn’t shot dead.

Ross Schreiber, who was appointed to represent Simpson, said she was not a risk to flee, was a good student with no prior convictions and she cooperated with authorities.  He said she had gone to the airport to meet her boyfriend. “She was there for legitimate purposes,” Schreiber said.

Simpson was “extremely lucky she followed the instructions or deadly force would have been used,” Pare said. “She’s lucky to be in a cell as opposed to the morgue.”  Simpson is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology sophomore from Hawaii, officials said.  The battery-powered rectangular device had nine flashing lights, and Simpson had Play-Doh in her hands, Pare said.

The phrases “Socket to me” and “Course VI” were written on the back of her sweatshirt, which authorities displayed to the media. Course VI appears to refer to MIT’s major of electrical engineering and computer science.  Simpson was a member of MIT’s swimming and diving team in 2006, according to the team’s Web site, which lists her hometown as Kihei, Hawaii. MIT spokeswoman Patti Richards said aside from confirming she was a student, the school did not have any comment.

She was arrested about 8 a.m. outside Terminal C, home to United Airlines, Jet Blue and other carriers.  A Massachusetts Port Authority staffer manning an information booth in the terminal became suspicious when Simpson — wearing the device — approached to ask about an incoming flight, Pare said. Simpson then walked outside, and the staffer notified a nearby trooper.  The trooper, joined by others with submachine guns, confronted her at a traffic island in front of the terminal.  “She was immediately told to stop, to raise her hands and not to make any movement, so we could observe all her movements to see if she was trying to trip any type of device,” Pare said. “Had she not followed the protocol, we might have used deadly force.”

Pare said Simpson took a subway to the airport, but he was not sure if she had the device on at that time.   The major praised the booth attendant, but said the incident is a reminder of the terrorism threat confronting the civil aviation system. Two of the four passenger jets hijacked on Sept. 11, 2001, took off from Logan.   The city was the focus of a major security scare Jan. 31 when dozens of battery-powered devices were discovered in various locations. Bomb squads were deployed and some transportation links were closed temporarily. They turned out to be a promotion for the Cartoon Network.

 

Earn a Degree on YouTube!

And here is yet another intersting internet based story.  It’s a dream-come-true for web addicts: you can now earn a college credit for watching YouTube.  Pitzer College began offering what may be the first course about the video-sharing site this fall . About 35 students meet in a classroom but work mostly online, where they view YouTube content and post their comments.

Class lessons also are posted and students are encouraged to post videos. One class member, for instance, posted a 1:36-minute video of himself juggling. Alexandra Juhasz, a media studies professor at the liberal arts college, said she was “underwhelmed” by the content on YouTube but set up the course, “Learning from YouTube,” to explore the role of the popular site.

Class members control most of the class content and YouTube watchers from around the world are encouraged to comment, Juhasz said.   She hopes the course will raise serious issues about YouTube, such as the role of “corporate-sponsored democratic media expression.”   YouTube is “a phenomenon that should be studied,” student Darren Grose said. “You can learn a lot about American culture and just Internet culture in general.”  I gotta get me one of those weird and strange degrees.