The Odd Side – November 3, 2015

Cops: Man Does $4K Damage to Parking Meters for $30 in Coins

GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) – Police say a Pennsylvania man caused $4,000 in damage to parking meters he knocked down for the $30 in coins inside.

Police say Allen Delgrosso was seen on video taking the four meters from a Greensburg parking lot Oct. 8.

Authorities say Delgrosso backed his truck into a pole holding the meters. They say that loosened the meters enough that he could remove them and put them in his pickup.Police say it took a few days to find the truck, but they pulled over Delgrosso once they identified his license plate.

They say he told them he only got $30 in change from the meters.

The Jeannette man is charged with theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief.

Big Rig Crash Pizza Dough

PAGE, Ariz. (AP) – A big rig loaded with more than 22 tons of pizza dough and flour has crashed in northern Arizona and spilled a large portion of its cargo.

Arizona Department of Public Safety says the semi rolled on its side about 4 a.m. Thursday along a stretch of U.S. 89 near Page.

The truck was filled with 44,500 pounds of pizza dough and flour, with each bag of dough weighing 50 pounds each.

DPS officials say the rig struck a guardrail and bounced left, rolling onto its side.

They say speed and fatigue may have contributed to the crash.

No one was injured but DPS says the driver was cited with failure to control the vehicle.

Officer Dressed as Homeless Man Catches Drivers Using Phones

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) – A Maryland police officer went undercover dressed as a homeless man to catch people who were using their phones while driving.

Cpl. Patrick Robinson went undercover Tuesday morning equipped with a police radio and a body camera. He held a sign that read, “I am not homeless. I am a Montgomery County police officer looking for cell phone texting violations.”

Montgomery County police Sgt. Phillip Chapin and about eight other officers issued a total of 56 tickets county-wide that day, including 31 tickets and 9 warnings to people caught using their phones without hands-free devices.

Chapin says authorities are seeing more distracted-driver-related deaths as a result of people using their phones while behind the wheel.

Sacramento OKs Ban of Loud Or Sleeping People From Buses, Trains

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. (Reuters) – Loud or sleeping people will soon be asked to leave buses and light rail trains in Sacramento under new rules approved by transportation officials Monday night.

The proposals come as Sacramento enjoys a downtown building boom that will eventually add a high-end basketball arena and a soccer stadium, amenities that officials hope will draw patrons to the area by light rail, bus or train.

“If we can make it more attractive or make it more enjoyable to use the light rail or bus, then people are more apt to use it,” said Alane Masui, spokeswoman for the Sacramento Regional Transit District.

Like many American cities, Sacramento fans out toward its suburbs in a sprawling metropolitan grid built more for automobiles than transit in most areas, and has struggled to win middle-class riders to its bus and light rail system.

Complaints abound. Last year, nearly 7,000 customers contacted the transit system’s customer advocacy department, which mostly takes complaints, and transit officials also reported 318 crimes, according to Masui and transit system data.

The system, which serves the City and County of Sacramento, has about 98,000 boardings on weekdays.

Under the ordinance, passengers will no longer be allowed to get on a bus or train unless they are appropriately dressed and are wearing shoes.

They will also be banned from playing sound equipment that is audible to other passengers and will be banned from sleeping on a train that has reached the end of the line. Those who refuse to comply could kicked off by authorities, the ordinance says.

Advocates for disadvantaged Sacramentans said the regulations were a swipe at homeless people, who have a right to ride buses and trains.

Pam Haney, advocacy coordinator for Wellspring Women’s Center in Sacramento, told the Sacramento Bee newspaper that the rules appeared discriminatory.

“It seems as though the primary goal of this change is enabling them to have an administrative route to be additionally discriminatory toward homeless people,” she told the paper.

Masui said the rules would be implemented once officials finalize remaining details and customers are notified of the changes.

Dog Named ‘Trigger’ Shoots Owner in the  Foot

AVILLA, Ind., (Reuters)  – A dog named Trigger shot his 25-year-old owner in the foot in a bizarre accident that had Indiana officials on Monday reminding hunters to take safety lessons.

Allie Carter of Avilla was wounded during a waterfowl hunt on Saturday morning at the Tri-County Fish and Wildlife Area in northern Indiana, according to Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

She laid her 12-gauge shotgun on the ground while repositioning herself, and her 11-year-old chocolate Labrador stepped on the gun, depressing the trigger, said Indiana Conservation Officer Jonathon Boyd.

The safety of the shotgun was not on, so it went off and Carter was shot in the left foot, Boyd said.

Carter, who had never completed a hunter education course, was hospitalized. She suffered non-life-threatening injuries from the bird shot pellets and was treated and released, Boyd said.

Indiana officials said that users of firearms should always point the muzzle in a safe direction and use the safety mechanism. Anyone born after Dec. 31, 1986 is required to take a certified hunter education course before purchasing a hunting license in Indiana.

However, anyone can get up to three apprentice hunter’s licenses without taking such a course, if accompanied by a person who has taken it, Boyd said. Carter had an apprentice license and does not face any charges.

“We encourage everyone to take a hunter education course before they venture out in the field,” Boyd said.

Boyd, who has been a conservation officer for seven years, remembered one other occasion when a dog shot its owner — a man hunting rabbits was shot after he leaned a gun against a tree, and his beagle stepped on it.

Carter could not be reached for comment.