Thursday, June 29, 2006

Inflatable Justice

BRISTOW, Okla. - Serving on the jury in an indecent-exposure trial unfolding in this conservative Oklahoma town has been a giggle-inducing experience.

Former Judge Donald D. Thompson, a veteran of 23 years on the bench, is on trial on charges he used a penis pump on himself in the courtroom while sitting in judgment of others.

Over the past few days, the jurors have watched a defense attorney and a prosecutor pantomime masturbation. A doctor has lectured on the lengths the defendant was willing to go to enhance his sexual performance.

The white-handled sexual device sits before the jury box for hours at a time. Occasionally an attorney picks it up and squeezes the handle, demonstrating the "sh-sh" sound of air rushing through the contraption's plastic tubing.

The jurors sometimes exchange awkward looks and break into nervous laughter when the testimony takes a lurid turn.

Thompson, 59, is charged with four counts of indecent exposure, each punishable by up to 10 years in prison. If convicted, he would also have to register as a sex offender, and his $7,489.91-a-month pension would be in jeopardy.

Thompson's former court reporter, Lisa Foster, wiped away tears as she described tracing an unfamiliar "sh-sh" in the courtroom to her boss. She testified that between 2001 and 2003 she saw Thompson expose himself at least 15 times.

"I was really shocked and I was kind of scared because it was so bizarre," said Foster.

She testified that during a trial in 2002, she heard the pump during the emotional testimony of a murdered toddler's grandfather.

The grandfather "was getting real teary-eyed, and the judge was up there pumping on that pump," she said. "It was sickening."

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Total Eclipse of the Car

600 lbs. woman survives getting thrown through sunroof

Town N Country, Florida – A woman is in stable condition after being ejected through the sunroof of her SUV during an accident.

Thirty-seven-year-old Ruth Matthews told paramedics that another vehicle cut her off in traffic, and she took evasive action to avoid a crash. Her Isuzu Amigo rolled over and she was thrown through the sunroof and onto the roadway. Investigators say she was not wearing her seatbelt.

Paramedics initially tried to fly Matthews to Tampa General Hospital, but her weight, estimated at 600 pounds, made it impossible. Emergency crews were able to transport her to St. Joseph’s Hospital, where she is listed in stable condition.

Authorities are continuing their investigation.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Gaseous thievery.

A woman was struck in the leg by a shotgun blast after she and two others were spotted early this morning siphoning gas from vehicles in the area of Freeport Boulevard in Sparks, police said.

The woman was identified as Sarina Ellis, 22, who was hit in the leg.

A man identified as Alden Noring was taken to Washoe County Jail and booked on suspicion of battery with a deadly weapon and shooting into a vehicle.

Police said Noring turned himself in to authorities after the incident, about 2:25 a.m.

Police said Ellis, along with Allen Dixon, 25, and Katrina Myrick-Davidson, 43, were siphoning gas when Noring awoke and went outside with a shotgun to confront them. Police said Noring fired at least twice.

Noring was involved in a similar shooting at 385 Freeport Blvd., in 1995, police said.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Dosing The Dew

Cops: Teen understudy put Clorox in lead actress's soda

JUNE 2--A Texas teenager angling for the lead role in a school play is facing charges that she spiked a competing actress's drink with Clorox. Katherine Smith, 18, was arrested this week and hit with a felony rap for tampering with a consumer product (in this case a bottle of Mountain Dew she gave to a 15-year-old rival).

According to a Tarrant County arrest warrant, Smith was the understudy of the teen victim in a play called "Ha." By dosing the younger actress's Dew, Smith believed that she would take over the play's lead role. The warrant notes that Smith "had a lot of family coming in from out of town to see the play and watch her perform." Additionally, Smith's mother believed that her daughter was the play's main character, not an understudy for the February performances at L.D. Bell High School in Hurst.

Smith, who used an eye dropper to place bleach in the 20-ounce soda bottle, told a school administrator that she wanted to harm the lead actress "so she could not perform in the play." Smith's plot was thwarted when the girl smelled an unusual odor emanating from the Dew. Smith faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted of the spiking bid.