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Weird U.S. state laws take effect in 2013

© Dreamstime.com
Releasing a hog into the wild is now illegal in Kentucky.

A number of new laws went into effect after the toll of midnight on Dec. 31, and from the wise to the wacky, they're now officially on the books in states across America.

In Kentucky, for example, it's illegal to release a feral hog into the wild. The law makes sense, according to Politico, because wild hogs have been running amok in Kentucky's farmland, destroying crops and spreading disease.

Though the U.S. Department of Agriculture has been using gun-equipped helicopters to cull packs of wild hogs in the state, their populations continue to increase. The beasts are now found in 37 of Kentucky's counties, up from 19 counties in 2009, reports Politico.

The state of Illinois has dealt a blow to necrophiliacs, specifically outlawing sex with a corpse for the first time. Previously, the only charge authorities could level was "criminal damage to property."

"The death of a loved one is bad enough, but it should be much more than criminal damaged property," state Rep. Daniel Beiser told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "This is a completely inappropriate charge."

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Restaurant rival poisons 80 diners' dishes in China

Eggplant Dish
© Medical Daily
Diners in China received quite the uncomfortable surprise recently when they ordered eggplant dishes in a Beijing restaurant. The dishes had been laced with clonidine, a drug prescribed for a variety of conditions, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, menopause and LSD flashbacks. The event sent 80 diners to the hospital; 34 patrons needed to have their blood pumped in order to remove traces of the drug.

According to the Annals of Internal Medicine, the perpetrators were connected to a neighboring restaurant, who wanted to gain a leg up on the competition by making its patrons sick. The pair hid the drug, a white powder without a scent, in the restaurant's starch, which the chefs used to thicken the braised eggplant.

Clonidine was likely chosen because it takes only a small trace of the drug to make a person sick and would be tasteless. The diners fell ill almost immediately, becoming dizzy, tired, nauseous. Some diners also reportedly suffered from blurred vision and started vomiting.

Doctors at an area hospital quickly discovered that the source of the diners' symptoms was potentially toxic levels of clonidine in their blood. The police traced the drug to the restaurant before linking the chemical with the nearby restaurant. The perpetrators were snagged and sentenced to one year in prison.

Eye 2

New York man arrested in attempted murder of 7-year-old


David Alfonso
A western New York man was arrested in the alleged attempted murder of a 7-year-old girl, the Buffalo News and Niagara Gazette report.

Lockport, N.Y., police arrested David Alfonso, 28, on Monday after responding to a 911 call and finding Alfonso at an intersection covered in blood, the News reports.

Alfonso allegedly tried to kill the little girl, the child's mother, Cassandra Castro, 27, told police, according to the News.

In her call to emergency responders, the mother allegedly said, "He is killing my baby," the Gazette reports.

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Fake "fashion braces" are the latest Asian fashion trend

© Medical Daily
Most American teenagers can't wait to shed their "metal mouth" nickname and count down the days they can finally take their braces off. However, trendy teenagers in China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand can't wait to get them on, even if they don't need it.

Braces are the latest teenage fashion trend in Asia. According to the Vice UK, having a mouth of metal has become such a hit with Asian teens that there have been reports of many adolescents buying harmful, fake, black market braces.

Braces are considered a sign of wealth in Southeast Asia. A real set of braces in Bangkok, for example, will cost around $1,200, which is a considerable amount for a country with a GDP of $345 billion, compared to the US which had a GDP of $15.06 trillion in 2011.

Vice UK reports that the "best part" about the fashionable faux braces is that they don't need to be inserted by a medical professional. According to the website many Asian beauty salons are now offering to put in these fashion braces. There are even cheaper do-it-yourself kits that let people choose between "Hello Kitty", "Mickey Mouse" or other varieties for as little as $100.


Online article forces Giles County officials, police to cancel school on Wednesday

School Shooting
© RevelationNow
An online article claims to have found a connection between the shootings in Aurora and Newtown. It also includes a potential future target for 'the next school massacre.'
Giles County, Va., - On Wednesday, most students will head back to school but not those in Giles County. They were suppose to return to class but school was canceled after an online article raised concerns about safety.

The article is entitled: The Next School Massacre Target?". It's posted on a website that caters to conspiracy theories and UFOs.

"We have to take this as serious information," says Giles County Sheriff Morgan Millirons.

The article connects the Colorado movie theater shooting to last month's shooting in Connecticut and then to Narrows.

The author uses a scene in the latest Batman movie that shows a map of attack sites. One is called Sandy Hook, the other is Narrows. The author writes that it's plausible schools in Narrows, Virginia might be in danger.

"We just want to emphasize that no threat has been made to any school system here in Giles County," says Sheriff Millirons.

But police aren't taking any chances. On Tuesday, police issued a reverse 911 call to parents about the article.


Kent man attacked by coyotes in his own backyard

Washington - A local man was attacked by coyotes in his own backyard and spent most of Friday night in the emergency room.

Now he is now warning others to be on the lookout - and he's especially worried for pets and children in the area.

Faron Scarberry says he moved to Kent about two weeks ago and he's already facing an unexpected danger in the neighborhood.

"I love wildlife," he says, "I like looking out the deck, looking at them. But when they're starting to threaten the animals and people in the neighborhood, it's gone a little bit overboard."

Scarberry says three coyotes attacked him Friday night while he was walking his dog in the backyard.

"They come up toward my face, and I kind of blocked them and pushed them away, and that's when the one grabbed me by the leg," he says.


Man found dead standing up in his kitchen

© Photo: ALAMY
Mr Evans had consumed a lot of alcohol on the day and was four times over the drink drive limit
A coroner has described a man's death as 'bizarre' after he was found dead standing up in his kitchen.

Andrew Evans was discovered by a friend, who visited him at his home in East Grinstead, West Sussex, on May 10 this year.

Horsham Coroner's Court heard how the 35-year-old had injured his head earlier in the day, but is not believed to have realised how serious the injury was.

The court heard how Mr Evans had consumed a lot of alcohol on the day and was four times over the drink drive limit.

It is believed he died after blacking out as he reached into a cupboard in his kitchen, with his body falling against the kitchen fittings and remaining standing up.

The court heard how a friend of Mr Evans, who was not named, arrived at this home on May 10 to see him "standing in the kitchen" with his right hand reaching into a cupboard.


Record gun sales at Virginia weapons show as families 'stock up' on arms after Sandy Hook massacre

Virginia gun show
© Splash
Crowds browse assault rifles and ammunition at a gun show in Virginia.
A gun trade show in the U.S. has attracted huge crowds and posted record sales - just weeks after 20 children and six adults were shot dead in the Sandy Hook school massacre.

Many vendors at the Nation's Gun Show, held over three days in Chantilly, Virginia, struggled to keep up with demand as customers rushed to snap up assault-type rifles, handguns, ammunition and magazines.

As the debate over gun control continues to rage in the U.S. in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting on December 14, some commentators said boosted sales at the trade show were down to fears such weapons may not be on the market for much longer.


Paparazzo killed by oncoming traffic after photographing Justin Bieber's Ferrari

Paparazzi have had nasty run-ins with pop star Justin Bieber, including a high-speed chase in July that prompted a city councilman to predict that such an encounter could end tragically.

It happened Tuesday.

A photographer, who thought he spied Bieber sitting in his parked white Ferrari, was struck and killed by oncoming traffic as he walked across a Los Angeles freeway to get back to his car after snapping photos.

An opportune picture of the 18-year-old celebrity can rake in hard currency -- but Bieber was not in the car at the time of the New Year's Day incident.

California Highway Patrol officers had pulled over Bieber's vehicle Tuesday evening at an off-ramp of Interstate 405.

The photographer spotted the sports car, parked his own vehicle across the street, crossed to get closer to Bieber's car and took photos of its occupants, said Los Angeles Police spokesman James Stoughton.


Ending India's rape culture

© AP Photo/Manish Swarup
An Indian girl shouts during a protest in New Delhi, India, Monday, Dec. 31, 2012.
The crime seems incomprehensible. A 23-year-old physiotherapy student is dead, 12 days after having been raped for more than an hour by six men in a bus traveling on main roads in the Indian capital. Her internal injuries from the iron rod that her attackers used were so severe that doctors had to remove her intestines in their effort to save her life.

Indians, it seems, have had enough. Dozens of large and increasingly angry demonstrations have been held to demand that the government ensure women's security and stop treating rapists with impunity. While the authorities have sought to quell the protests - cordoning off central New Delhi and subjecting the rest of the city to traffic restrictions - violence has escalated. After a policeman died, live ammunition was fired into the crowds - killing a journalist, Bwizamani Singh, and provoking a rebuke from Reporters without Borders.

It is not simply the high rate of rape in India that is driving the protests' virulence. In a passionate speech, Kavita Krishnan, Secretary of the All India Progressive Women's Association, spoke to the deeper issue behind the protests: the blame-the-victim culture in India around sex crimes. She notes that government and police officials recently insisted that most rapists cannot be prosecuted in India, because, as one official put it, they are known to the women attacked. Other officials have publicly suggested that victims themselves are "asking for it" by their use of freedom of movement.