Odd news: Zopittybop-bop-bop arrested, dancing with a raccoon
The week's odd news column includes the arrest of Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop, Georgia bans paying tolls for drivers behind you and a goat manure fire stinks up a Vermont town. The video of the week is a hillbilly dancing with a raccoon (no, we don't know why people do this).
Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop charged in Iowa
MADISON, Wis. -- A Madison man whose unusual name drew national attention last year after he was arrested on charges of marijuana possession now faces drug charges in Iowa.
A Wisconsin State Journal report (http://bit.ly/1bGQdnt) says felony drug charges have been filed against Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop. The 32-year-old goes by Beezow.
He was arrested July 20 in Iowa's Washington County. He remained in the county jail Saturday. He was booked into jail as Jeffrey D. Wilschke, which is the name on his driver's license, even though he legally changed his name in 2011.
Online court records did not list a defense attorney Saturday.
Beezow was arrested on charges of drug possession in Madison in 2012. That arrest brought national attention to his name, which became fodder for TV anchors and late-night talk show hosts.
Georgia bans paying tolls for others
ATLANTA -- No more paying it forward for the driver behind you at the Georgia 400 toll plaza.
A new rule from the State Road and Tollway Authority bans drivers from paying the toll for the person behind them in line.
That became something of a local tradition over the last 20 years. But The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that some drivers had recently complained that cashiers were pocketing the extra 50 cents when they didn't see their money being tossed into the coin basket for the driver behind them.
The deputy executive director of the State Road and Tollway Authority, Bert Brantley, says a driver might not see the extra money being thrown into the change basket because the next motorist sometimes declined the money, allowing it to be passed to another driver.
Ex-convict sentenced for sneaking into New York City jails
NEW YORK -- A convicted sex offender who repeatedly used phony correction department credentials to gain entry into New York City jails has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Matthew Matagrano was sentenced Thursday. The 36-year-old Yonkers resident pleaded guilty last month to posing as a correction officer and sneaking into the Manhattan Detention Center, where he mingled with inmates for hours.
During a Feb. 27 visit Matagrano assaulted an inmate and stole a $2,500 walkie-talkie. He also handed out cigarettes to inmates.
Matagrano's rap sheet includes a conviction for sodomy and sexual abuse. Police statements released in court report Matagrano said he repeatedly sneaked into jails because the people inside were "nice" and made him "feel important."
Spontaneous goat manure fire stinks up Vermont town
WINDSOR, Vt. -- A pile of goat manure spontaneously caught fire, spreading stench and wrinkling noses through a Vermont town but causing no damage, officials said.
The odor evoked "a damp kind of burning leaves or brush fire," Windsor Town Manager Tom Marsh said.
A worker on her way to milk goats discovered the fire in the 120-cubic-yard manure pile around 3 a.m. Wednesday, said George Redick, owner of the 800-goat Oak Knoll Dairy. He and others put out the flames with water from a hose but the pile continued to smolder. He planned to call the fire department later in the morning, but firefighters were already searching for the source of the smell by 6:30 a.m.
Marsh said he could smell the fire at his hilltop home five miles away. He called it "a little disconcerting, because it was a very strong smell."
Redick says the manure would typically have been spread around the farm earlier in the year, but the rainy season and other factors kept that from happening.
He said he used to think spontaneous combustion was make-believe.
"Now I'm a believer," he said.
New Jersey farmer gets political with corn maze
CHESTER, N.J. -- A New Jersey farmer has cut the faces of Republican Gov. Chris Christie and his Democratic challenger into a corn maze to highlight the state's gubernatorial election.
The corn was planted in June at the Stony Hill Farm in Chester.
Owner Dale Davis tells Newark's The Star-Ledger newspaper he chose the maze to get people interested. He says everybody recognizes Christie but he doesn't know whether a lot of people would recognize gubernatorial rival Sen. Barbara Buono.
Christie is far ahead of Buono in public polls and leads among nearly every demographic group. He's seen as a viable contender for the 2016 Republican nomination for president.
The Morris County maze will open to the paying public Aug. 31. The election is Nov. 5.
Utah thieves vacuum coins from machine
SALT LAKE CITY -- A pair of enterprising thieves took a car wash to the cleaners: They used a powerful shop vacuum to suck quarters out of a coin-operated machine, police said Wednesday.
The duo drew the suspicion of a passing police officer and failed to make a clean getaway.
"They had a good plan. They were enterprising. If they were successful they could have returned night after night," said Sgt. Gary Young in the Salt Lake City suburb of Cottonwood Heights. "More often thieves just use a crowbar. They get an A for effort but an F for execution."
Todd Herburg, 53, and Scott Luker, 55, were arrested Wednesday on suspicion of burglary.
More charges are pending. What gave the men away was a crude attempt at altering their vehicle's license plates. They used a piece of black electrical tape to change a "D" to a "B," Young said.
The bandits were at work for about 12 minutes, sucking coins out of the coin dispensary of a stand-alone vacuum cleaner at the car wash, Young said.
They used their own shop vacuum to do the work, he said. It was powered by an inverter rigged inside their Jeep SUV to produce household current.
Police haven't counted their stash of quarters yet. Young said the coin-operated machine probably held no more than $30.
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