Curses, Foiled Again
Police couldn’t help but arrest Mahogany Mason-Kelly, 20, in Jefferson County, Texas, after the Lamar University student Tweeted, “I still got a warrant in Pearland… Those pigs will NEVER catch me!!! … NEVER!!!!” It was only a traffic warrant, but Mason-Kelly “kind of put it out there, didn’t she?” Randy Martin of the Lamar police department said after transferring custody to Pearland officers. “It’s a pretty good theory that there was probably more effort in this case.” (Beaumont Enterprise)
Police accused Joshua Hughes, 25, of hiding in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Love Library North after hours and setting fire to three books. Hughes was arrested after he called 9-1-1 for help because he couldn’t find his way out of the library when the fire started. The only damage was the three burned books. (Associated Press)
Congressional investigators accused the Transportation Security Administration of “wasting hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars” by warehousing body scanners rather than deploying them to commercial airports. Their report indicated about 5,700 pieces of security equipment, with a value of $184 million, are being stored, 85 percent of it for more than six months, more than a third of it for more than a year and one piece for six years, more than half its useful life. TSA Chief Financial Officer David R. Nicholson responded by telling a joint hearing of the House Transportation and Infrastructure and House Oversight and Government Reform committees that $184 million is only about 5 percent of all the security equipment the agency has.
But Rep. John L. Mica, R-Fla., called this revelation merely the latest in a long line of TSA procurement failures. Noting the agency spent more than $30 million buying explosive-trace-detection portals, known as “puffers,” for use at screening checkpoints, Mica said only half of them were ever deployed, and they didn’t work. “Where are the puffers?” he demanded. (The Washington Times)
More people are showing up at airport security checkpoints with guns in their carry-on bags, according to the TSA. The agency’s blog reported that five years ago about 500 handguns were found at checkpoints, whereas last year, “over 1,200 firearms were discovered at TSA checkpoints across the nation. Many guns are found loaded, with rounds in the chamber. Most passengers simply state they forgot they had a gun in their bag.” The agency insisted the increase isn’t because more people are carrying guns to airport checkpoints but because it’s better at catching people with weapons. (The New York Times)
After Rush Limbaugh was inducted into the Hall of Famous Missourians, the Missouri House spent more than $1,100 in taxpayer dollars to install a security camera trained on a new bronze bust of the conservative commentator. Clerk Adam Crumbliss said Republican legislative leaders had expressed concerns the bust might be vandalized, noting that since the bust was added, “We’ve had lots of calls, and some calls and complaints have been a little beyond the pale.” The Hall of Famous Missourians honors dozens of people, such as President Harry Truman, Walt Disney and former Cardinals baseball star Stan Musial, but Limbaugh’s is the only bust with a camera specifically pointed at it. (Associated Press)
Idaho liquor regulators decided not to let Five Wives vodka be stocked at state-run liquor stores, declaring the brand offensive to Mormons, who make up more than a quarter of the state’s population, even though the vodka is sold in Utah, a state dominated by Mormons. Five Wives maker Ogden’s Own Distillery also noted Idaho allows the sale of a Utah beer named Polygamy Porter. After the distillery protested, Idaho regulators agreed to make Five Wives vodka available through special warehouse orders. (Associated Press)
Rachel George, 21, was charged with assaulting several police officers who tried to arrest her at a baseball game in Pittsburgh’s PNC Park, including Sgt. Sean Duffy, who, it was reported, “injured himself striking her in the face.” (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)
Elizabeth Halseth, a former Nevada state senator who ran on a Christian family values platform, posed in a black bikini as a write-in candidate for Maxim magazine’s “Hot 100” contest. Running as a political unknown in 2010, the 27-year-old Halseth won as a Republican in a Democrat-majority district. A campaign mailer showed her opponent with his wife, who wore a revealing evening dress, and the caption, “Not Our Values.” After becoming the youngest woman ever elected to the Nevada senate, she and her husband divorced. She resigned in February, explaining she needed to “focus my efforts completely as a mother and job seeker.” (Reuters)
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