Monday, May 4, 2020

Kansas official says man drank cleaner after Trump floated dangerous disinfectant remedy

The Kansas State Health officer said the head of the Kansas Poison Control Center reported a more than 40 percent increase in cleaning chemical cases. “Including a fellow over the weekend who drank a product because of the advice he’d received,” he said during a news conference. He didn’t identify where the man had gotten the advice. Experts say drinking bleach or any other type of disinfectant is dangerous and possibly fatal. The makers of disinfectant products, such as Lysol, have also issued warnings against consuming their products. “We’re doing what we can to counter-message against that kind of remedy,” he said. (The Wichita Eagle)


Georgia men drink disinfectants in attempts to stop coronavirus

Two people in Georgia drank liquid cleaning products over the weekend in misguided attempts to ward off COVID-19, according to the Georgia Poison Center. Both men had histories of psychiatric problems and are expected to recover. The poison center’s director said he did not know if the men guzzled the chemicals because they heard about President Donald Trump’s statements during a White House briefing. Since the pandemic began, at least two other Georgians have fallen ill from similar attempts to clean their inner organs with household chemicals, even before Trump’s remarks. So far, though, the state’s biggest spike in poisonings from cleaning products has been caused by home-bound Georgians mixing products together to furiously scrub surfaces, then falling ill from inhaling fumes. Last year, the poison center handled 49 product-mixing calls in March and April. This year, since March 1 the center has had 115 calls. (Atlanta News Now)


Alaska school board removes ‘The Great Gatsby,’ other famous books from curriculum for ‘controversial’ content

An Alaska school board removed five famous, but allegedly “controversial”, books from district classrooms, inadvertently renewing local interest in the excluded works. “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou, “Catch-22” by Joseph Heller, “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald and “Invisible Man” by Ralph Ellison were all taken off an approved list of works that teachers in the Mat-Su Borough School District may use for instruction. The school board voted 5-2 on recently to yank the works out of teachers’ hands starting this fall. The removed books contain content that could potentially harm students, school board Vice President Jim Hart said. (KTUU)


Mustang driver said he didn’t stop because he thought troopers wanted to race

A Minnesota man was arrested in Elkhart County after officials say he led Indiana State Police on a high speed pursuit because he thought they “wanted to race.” According to the press release, 25-year-old male driver was clocked by troopers going 120 miles an hour in a 70 mile an hour zone. The red Mustang was chased for 25 miles, with troopers throwing stop sticks twice before the pursuit ended. Police say the driver told troopers he didn’t stop because he thought the officers wanted to race. He was taken to the Elkhart County Jail and now faces preliminarily charges of resisting police, reckless driving and several moving violations. (Indiana State Police)


False belief poison cures virus kills over 700 in Iran

The false belief that toxic methanol cures the coronavirus has seen over 700 people killed in Iran, an official said. That represents a higher death toll than so far released by the Iranian Health Ministry. An adviser to the ministry said that the difference in death tallies is because some alcohol poisoning victims died outside of hospital. Alcohol poisoning has skyrocketed by ten times over in Iran in the past year, according to a government report released earlier in April, amid the coronavirus pandemic. The national coroner’s authority said that alcohol poisoning killed 728 Iranians between February 20th and April 7th. Last year there were only 66 deaths from alcohol poisoning, according to the report. Separately, the Iranian health ministry spokesman said that 525 people have died from swallowing toxic methanol alcohol since February 20th. So far, a total of 5,011 people had been poisoned from methanol alcohol. He added that some 90 people have lost their eye sight or are suffering eye damage from the alcohol poisoning. Iran is facing the worst coronavirus outbreak in the Middle East with 5,806 deaths and more than 91,000 confirmed case. (Associated Press)


Man named Tupac Shakur files for unemployment in Kentucky

Kentucky Governor Andy Bashear apologized to a local resident bearing the famous rapper’s name after he used Shakur as an example of “bad apples” using fake names for unemployment filings, according to a report. “We had somebody apply for unemployment for Tupac Shakur here in Kentucky,” Beshear said recently, referencing the West Coast icon who was killed in 1996. “And that person may have thought they were being funny, they probably did. Except for the fact that because of them, we had to go through so many other claims.” Except gaining unemployment benefits is no laughing matter for the 46-year-old man who lives in Lexington. The man worked as a restaurant cook before the coronavirus pandemic shut down shops across the state. Shakur is among more than 20 million Americans seeking jobless aid as COVID-19 has shut down the country. He applied for unemployment insurance as soon as he could on March 13th, and wondered why the money hadn’t come more than a month later until he realized it was because the government thought it was a prank. The governor called Shakur personally to apologize. Shakur forgave Beshear for the mistake and was appreciative for the call. (Lexington Herald-Leader)


British police seek person dressing as plague doctor

British police say they are keen to speak to a person who has been dressing as a 17th century plague doctor for walks during the coronavirus lockdown. The unidentified individual has been spotted in the Norwich suburb of Hellesdon wearing a long black cloak, hat and pointed beak-like mask in recent weeks. People posting on a community Facebook page said the outfit could frighten children, with Norfolk Police saying they wanted to give “words of advice” to the person. A witness took a photograph of the person walking across a recreation ground in Hellesdon. “It was like 20 degrees, he was wearing a full black suit, it just looked ridiculous,” she said. “It’s clearly for attention or something like that, because normal people just wouldn’t do that.” She said she has not seen the person since a Facebook post drew attention to them, adding: “I was told that if I see him again to call the police.” In 17th century Europe, physicians who tended to plague victims wore a costume that has since taken on sinister overtones. People mistakenly believed the outfits could purify poisonous air. A Norfolk Police spokesman said Officers have been made aware of an individual who was seen walking around the Hellesdon area wearing a plague outfit. Although no offences have been committed at this time, officers are keen to trace the individual in order to provide words of advice about the implications of his actions on the local community. Should any further information come forward about any offenses being committed, we will act accordingly. (RTE)


Man accused of using stolen underwear to set fires

A man from North Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, is accused of using stolen underwear to set several fires in the county. The 43-year-old man has been charged in Fond du Lac County with 27 counts–including arson and possession of child pornography. The Police were able to identify the man as a suspect. During an interview, he admitted intentionally starting fires in the county, according to the complaint. Officers examined Miller’s phone and found “thousands of images of pornography.” Some of those images were identified as child pornography. They also found an image of a large fire. The man stated that he would take underwear from laundromats and use it to start fires, according to the criminal complaint complaint. He stated that he was wearing women’s underwear during the interview and he buys the underwear at stores. he further stated that the underwear he used to light the fires was taken from laundromats. Ultimately, he admitted to setting 12 fires between December 2018 and April 2020. The complaint states he knew details about the fires that were not made public. He is being held on a $200,000 cash bond. (WBAY)


Woman stabbed boyfriend during argument over undelivered packages

A woman stabbed her boyfriend to death at their apartment on Holden Avenue during an argument over him failing to deliver packages for her business, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. The 21-year-old faces a charge of second-degree murder in the killing of her 27-year-old boyfriend at an apartment complex. The witness and boyfriend returned to the apartment in the afternoon of the killing, when the couple began arguing. The witness stepped outside briefly. When he went back inside, he discovered the boyfriend had been stabbed. The boyfriend gave the witness his cell phone and asked him to take a picture of the wound in his chest, according to the arrest report. The girlfriend was standing nearby, holding a kitchen knife, the report states. The boyfriend ran from the apartment and collapsed in the concrete breezeway outside. He was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead a short time later. Meanwhile, the girlfriend is being held without bond. (Orlando Sentinel)


Man in gorilla costume charged with burglarizing home

A man was arrested after he reportedly entered the wrong home wearing a gorilla costume and scared a six-year-old girl in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee. Mt. Juliet police responded to a residence where they said a resident had confronted a man in the backyard after realizing he was just inside their home. Police said the man, who was wearing a gorilla costume, took off running, but was located by officers nearby. Officers arrested the suspect, a 31-year-old man from Old Hickory, Tennessee. According to police, the investigation revealed he thought he was at someone else’s home and was looking for another individual. The man was booked into the Wilson County jail on a charge of aggravated burglary. (WKRN)


Speedy Gonzalez accused of stealing checks from metro Atlanta mailboxes

Police say they have arrested the man accused of stealing mail in metro Atlanta, Georgia: Speedy Gonzalez. (Yes, that is his legal name.) In late January, a man reported that he had some checks stolen from his mailbox in Suwanee, Georgia. The checks were supposed to be picked up by the USPS and mailed to their intended recipients. The next day, the 35-year-old suspect visited the Home Depot and made a purchase of over $3,000, according to investigators. After making the purchase, police say he returned the items for cash. In March, after investigating, authorities identified the suspect as Gonzalez and announced that after he is arrested, he will be facing several charges. During a traffic stop recently, he was arrested by police and booked into the Gwinnett County Jail. According to the arrest report, Gonzalez also has outstanding warrants through the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office. Gonzalez is facing forgery, identity fraud and theft by deception charges. (WSB TV)


Florida shop makes coronavirus face masks from python skin

The owner of All American Gator Products in Dania Beach is crafting decorative mask coverings from the skin of the Burmese python, the infamous invasive species wreaking havoc on the native wilidlife of the Everglades. “People are going to have to cover their faces, and unfortunately the situation may last longer than we imagined,” he said. “Some people want to make a fashion statement even during this pandemic, so I want to give them options.” The python skin itself doesn’t provide protection but his designing a mask allows for a filter or a lining to be inserted and removed. He said he is is in talks with suppliers of filters and is considering using cloth because surgical-grade materials are scarce and in high demand by medical professionals. He said that some masks may come with a filtration system like the N95 mask, which blocks very small airborne particles and currently is advised for use only by medical professionals treating patients with COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The python masks will be made with holes framed by black, silver or gold metal rings, which will add a hint of luxury to the items, he said. They will probably be secured with a band with a VELCRO closure, and will come in different colors and finishes. A metal nose clamp will help ensure a good fit, he said. (Click Orlando)


A 72-year-old British man completed a solo trans-Atlantic rowing trip, breaking three world records

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Graham Walters is the oldest person to row across the same ocean multiple times, the oldest person to row across the Atlantic solo and the oldest person to row across any ocean solo. He took off from the Spanish island of Gran Canaria in January, before much of the world went into a lockdown due to coronavirus. He arrived on the Caribbean island of Antigua on last week. He’s a retired carpenter, but built the boat in which he crossed the Atlantic and named it Geary, after his grandfather. This was the fourth time he rowed across the Atlantic. (UPI)


$80,000 in Counterfeit Roku Devices Seized in Pittsburgh

US Customs and Border Patrol seized 1600 counterfeit Roku devices in Pittsburgh. The devices, which would have had a retail value of $80,000 if they were authentic, were shipped from China earlier this month and were being sent to Butler County. Officials also noted that knockoff products like the confiscated Roku devices are made of substandard materials and are likely to break easily. “Customs and Border Protection officers remain committed to protecting the intellectual property rights of businesses while protecting consumers against potentially harmful counterfeit products,” said US Customs and Border Patrol acting port director for the Port of Pittsburgh. “Consumers should be aware that counterfeit goods pose a health and safety threat and should protect their families by purchasing safe, authentic goods from reputable vendors.” Customs seizes about $4.3 million in counterfeit products daily, on average, according to department statistics. (Trib Live)


Monday Scrapes By With:

  • Bird Day
  • Intergalactic Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You!)
  • International Firefighters Day
  • International Respect for Chickens Day
  • International Sauvignon Blanc Day
  • Melanoma Monday (First Monday)
  • Petite and Proud Day
  • World Give Day

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