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Mon, 24 Jan 2022
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US: CSX Train Derails; Taunton Police Investigate Theft of Railroad Tracks

© Taunton Gazette / Charles Winokoor
A CSX employee examines an area of track where a railroad engine derailed Wednesday because of what authorities said was the theft of two lengths of rail track.
A CSX railroad engine en route to a delivery in Taunton's Myles Standish Industrial Park derailed Wednesday afternoon after thieves cut away two 8-foot sections of solid steel track, authorities said.

No one was injured as a result of the incident, which observers on scene said ranks as the most audacious example of metal theft in recent memory.

"It stopped a little too late and derailed - it just dropped down on both sides," CSX trainmaster Mark Smith said of the four-axle GP40 engine that was pulling two cars and a rear engine.

The engine's front wheels landed astride the tracks, but neither it nor the other engine and two cars, tipped over. The rear engine, with the two cars in tow, by late Wednesday managed to pull away, leaving the front engine mired in the dirt among shards of shattered railroad ties.

Smith, 52, said the slow-moving train derailed at 1:30 p.m. as the two-man crew was delivering goods to Agar Supply, a foodservice distributor located at 225 John Hancock Road.

Bizarro Earth

US: Rally To Urge City Leaders To End Urban Beach Weekend

Saying 'enough is enough' several community activists are gathering forces for a rally Friday evening in front of Miami Beach City Hall to urge city leaders to end Urban Beach Weekend.

Herb Sosa, who publishes the online magazine Ambiente, is a leading figure to end the unofficial Memorial Day weekend event which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to South Beach.

In an open letter to Miami Beach Mayor Matti Bower, Sosa writes that the Urban Beach weekend
"shows our city as nothing short of a warzone - Filthy streets, a drive by shooting, multiple cars crashed in the process, and total chaos on the streets. This is unacceptable and must be controlled before we totally lose our city, tourism & residents. It is not limited to Ocean Drive or Collins - there isn't a residential street in South Beach not affected by tons of garbage, crime to our vehicles, excessive noise 24 hours a day, and simply a lack of respect for our community, citizens & property."


US: Naked Jogger Streaks Through Kansas Suburb, Hops into Community Pool Full of Kids

© Jonathan Skow/Getty
A naked man ran through a Kansas City suburb and then hopped into a community pool full of children
A deranged naked jogger streaked through a quiet Kansas suburb before hopping into a community pool full of children, cops said.

The man was spotted around noon Wednesday running in the buff next to a two-lane road in Overland Park, Kan., near Kansas City.

Resident Amy Shapiro told KSHB television that stunned drivers stopped their cars as the man sprinted by. She caught part of his naked jaunt on her cell phone camera.

"I was just like, 'Oh my God, this guy's naked,'" she told the station.

Heart - Black

US Kidnap Victim Lashes Out, as Abductors Jailed

© Reuters / Randy Pench / Pool
Nancy Garrido (bottom) appears for her sentencing as her husband, Phillip Garrido, sits behind her in Placerville, California June 2, 2011. The Garridos kidnapped and held jaycee Dugard captive for 18 years. Phillip received a 431 years to life sentence, while Nancy received 36 years to life.
A California woman kidnapped as a girl and repeatedly raped over 18 years hit out at her abductors Thursday saying they had stolen her life, as a court sent the couple away behind bars.

Jaycee Dugard, who was 11 when she was seized and is now 31, said she "hated every second" of her abuse at the hands of Phillip and Nancy Garrido, telling them: "There is no God in the universe that would condone your actions."

Phillip Garrido, who fathered two children with Dugard after kidnapping her in 1991, was given 431 years, while his wife was jailed for between 36 years and life, after a plea bargain.

Clad in orange prison uniforms, the Garridos -- who pleaded guilty in April under a deal with prosecutors -- sat silently as Dugard's statement was read out in the court by her mother, Terry Probyn.

"To you, Phillip, I say that I have always been a thing for your own amusement. I hated every second of every day of 18 years because of you and the sexual perversion you forced on me," Dugard said in the statement.

"As I think of all of those years, I am angry because you stole my life and that of my family. Thankfully I am doing well now and no longer live in a nightmare," Dugard added.

Heart - Black

US: Billy Bob Thornton's Daughter Found Guilty of Manslaughter in Death of Best Friend's Daughter

© The Associated Press / Orange County Jail
This image provided by the Orange County Jail shows the booking photo of the estranged daughter of actor Billy Bob Thornton, Amanda Brumfield, who was booked at the Orange County Florida Jail on Wednesday June 24, 2009. The estranged daughter of actor Billy Bob Thornton has been found guilty Friday May 27, 2011 in Florida of aggravated manslaughter of a child the Orange County State Attorney's Office said.
The estranged daughter of actor Billy Bob Thornton has been found guilty in Florida of aggravated manslaughter of a child.

The Orange County State Attorney's Office says the verdict against 32-year-old Amanda Brumfield was returned Friday. She faced murder charges in the 2008 death of her best friend's 1-year-old daughter, Olivia Madison Garcia.

She was found not guilty on first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse charges.

Brumfield claimed the girl hit her head after falling while trying to climb out of a playpen. Prosecutors said it was "impossible" that a fall from that height would cause a three-and-a-half inch fracture on the girl's skull.

The trial took place in the same courthouse where Casey Anthony is on trial for the death of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee.

Source: The Canadian Press


Malaysia Defamation Case: 100 Apologies on Twitter

Twitter screen
© Twitter
A Malaysian social activist is apologizing 100 times on Twitter in an unusual settlement with a magazine publisher in a defamation case, his lawyer said Thursday.

The penalty has sparked debate among Internet users about the pitfalls of social media in Malaysia, where authorities have repeatedly warned people to be more cautious about they write on blogs, Facebook and Twitter.

Fahmi Fadzil, an opposition politician's aide and respected commentator on social issues, claimed on Twitter in January that his pregnant friend had been poorly treated by her employers at a magazine run by BluInc Media.

Cowboy Hat

US: Yearbook Causes Controversy After it Names George W. Bush in List of 'Worst People' of All Time

A middle school yearbook in Arkansas has created controversy around the country after it named Former President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney in a list of the "worst" people of all time.

The yearbook included a list titled the "Top 5 worst people of all time." The list begins with Adolph Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, Charles Manson, but then lists Bush and Cheney.


US: Maryland Transit Administration Officers Detain Man For Taking Pictures

The Maryland Transit Administration says more training may be called for after three MTA officers detained a man for taking pictures at a light rail station.

According to the ACLU, this isn't the first time MTA Police have overstepped their bounds.


Facebook 'Planking' Craze Claims Life in Australia

© Agence France-Presse
Ambulances in Cairns. A new craze sweeping the Internet known as "planking" has claimed a life in Australia with a man attempting the fad plunging to his death from a balcony Sunday
A new craze sweeping the Internet known as "planking" claimed a life in Australia Sunday and police fear the tragedy may not be the last.

Planking involves someone lying flat on their stomach with their arms against their bodies in unusual and sometimes dangerous situations, with photographs of their exploits shared through social media sites.

It has gone viral in recent weeks with Facebook page Planking Australia boasting over 55,000 fans and hundreds of photos of people lying on train tracks, escalators, fire hydrants, motorbikes and other objects.

Police last week warned "plankers" of the dangers and their fears have been realised with the death of a man in Brisbane who plummeted from a seventh-storey balcony and died at the scene.

"This morning we have seen a young man take this activity a step further and attempt to plank on a balcony. Unfortunately he has tragically fallen to his death," Queensland Police Deputy Commissioner Ross Barnett said.

Heart - Black

Kenyan Olympic Marathon Champion Wanjiru Dies After Balcony Fall

© Reuters
Wansiru of Kenya runs in front of Tiananmen Gate after the start of the men's marathon at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
Kenyan Olympic marathon champion Samuel Wanjiru plunged to his death from the first-floor balcony of his home after the athlete's wife found him in bed with another woman, police told Reuters.

Regional police chief Jaspher Ombati said that Wanjiru's wife, Triza Njeri, surprised the couple when she came home late on Sunday, locked them in the bedroom and ran outside.

"In a rage, Samuel Kamau Wanjiru jumped from the first floor of the house and he was badly injured. When he was rushed to the hospital the doctors tried to resuscitate him but unfortunately he passed on," said Ombati.

Wanjiru, 24, won Kenya's first men's marathon gold in Beijing in 2008 and had been regarded as one of the greatest current talents in an east African country long renowned for its distance runners.

He also won the prestigious London and Chicago marathons, but his private life was troubled.

Ombati said Wanjiru returned home with the woman after a drinking spree. Nyahururu residents said Wanjiru had taken to heavy drinking of late and was stressed by personal problems.