Have you ever owned a car that was "Truly unencumbered by the engineering process"? Did you ever have a car that was so bad that thieves wouldn't steal it even if you left the keys in the ignition for them? Check out The Worst Cars of the Millenium
survey results at Cartalk. I once owned a Fiat that liked to purge itself of major parts on a weekly basis. They just sort of... fell off while I was driving.
posted by iconomy
on Apr 1, 2002 -
Robbers escape with $3m (£2.1m) in cash after hijacking a van at Heathrow Airport, London, the second such raid there in recent weeks.
Nice to see that security has improved then, at the worlds busiest airport
posted by MintSauce
on Mar 19, 2002 -
A family of six
was found dead in a case of murder-suicide, authorities in Oregon said Friday. Bryant, the father, became estranged from several branches of his family, including his parents, three brothers and a sister. The other family members were Jehovah's Witnesses and the split appeared to involve differences over religious beliefs.
In other news, An angry, mysterious preacher
told Andrea Yates that she was evil, that her children were damned, and that only death could save her. Mr. Yates testified that the preacher had taught him and his wife that children are lost forever to God, and therefore damned to eternal hellfire, if they are not "saved" by the time they are 13 or 14.
Are we regressing to the religions produced nightmares of the Middle Ages?
posted by semmi
on Mar 16, 2002 -
Life, not Death
for Ms. Yates. And, Texas doesn't have a no-parole sentence, so she'll be eligible for release. Where does she go from there?
posted by dwivian
on Mar 15, 2002 -
Police offers will soon have to disclose why they have stopped someone
- I thought this sounded like a reasonably good idea... especially since on more than one occasion I've been pulled over just so they can "check my car over"... until I read this: "Forces will be told to set up panels of community representatives to scrutinise stop and search records and check that ethnic minorities are not being targeted disproportionately."
. Can anyone else see where this is going? "Oh, I'm afraid we can't arrest Mr. X, because we've arrested too many [insert random racial group here] this month".
posted by robzster1977
on Mar 11, 2002 -
Enron's historical precidents.
This L.A. Times article discusses the historical precidents to the Enron debacle. My favorite (among lots of good stuff):
"Like Enron, ITT was a big campaign contributor. But Geneen's idea of how to use political influence made Lay and associates look like choir boys. In 1970, the company offered Republicans $1 million and consulted heavily with the Nixon White House and the CIA when Chile's new socialist president, Salvador Allende, threatened to seize the ITT-owned Chilean Telephone Co. Allende was overthrown with U.S. aid."
posted by electro
on Feb 22, 2002 -
Black thugs terrorize white students!
So the hooligans specifically target people who they think are white. Soon however they are all caught and put in jail. But these hoodlums were not prosecuted under any hate crime laws. But it gets better: Somehow, David Duke
gets involved... and the story still hasn't broke nationally!
posted by Keen
on Feb 21, 2002 -
In Greece, a military officer decapitates (article in greek
) 5 puppies, using an axe. Just like that. The jury reached a verdict, yesterday: he will face imprisonment for up to 6 months
, while the two soldiers who tried to stop him may go to jail for 5 years
! I'm just wondering, what would the verdict be if this happened in the US? And how solid is the legislation regarding animal abusement, in general?
posted by kchristidis
on Jan 23, 2002 -
Killer attempts robbery to get back to prison
After serving 8 years for killing his girlfriend he "was running out of money" once on the outside. So he robbed a banked, then waited outside for the cops to come on by and pick him up. It must be nice to know this clearly what you want out of life. I'm jealous.
posted by victors
on Jan 20, 2002 -
NDb -(60% x Nc/Nt +40% x Dc/Dt) x 17,585
"Mathematicians called in by the Metropolitan Police think they have worked out the best way to beat crime in the capital."
Are there any UK mathematician/cops out there that know what the variables actually are?
posted by badstone
on Jan 17, 2002 -
Yasmine Bleeth only gets two stinking years probation.
Yeah, she gets court costs, yeah, she gets community service. But no jail time. Unless it's because she only had (only had?) less than 25 grams of cocaine...oh, and driving under the influence. The question this post begs is: Is this another instance of a double standard for celebrities? I've heard about double standards for child molestation (a football player in New York), murder (Ray Lewis), etc...and there are obviously MANY instances of celebrities getting preferred treatment when it comes to drug charges. I guess this is just another one.
posted by taumeson
on Jan 10, 2002 -
Interview with the certified forensic entomologist.
In other words she examines insects in dead bodies for criminal investigations. Its good to know that there are dedicated professionals doing this just in case I happen to wash up on the shores of Lake Michigan. Hey, it could happen to any of us.
posted by skallas
on Jan 9, 2002 -
Britain's strict gun laws not really working. While Britain has some of the toughest firearms laws in the world, the recent spate of gun murders in London has highlighted a disturbing growth in armed crime.
Could the NRA be correct? Should the Bobbies now be required to carry guns, something they have never done before?
posted by Rastafari
on Jan 8, 2002 -
Weatherman faces up to six months.
Rio de Janeiro Mayor Cesar Maya has asked prosecutors to seek charges against Luiz Carlos Austin, claiming his weather forecast was irresponsible. The city's acting chief prosecutor, said he would likely charge Austin with sounding a false alarm, which is punishable by up to six months in prison.
Was it really irresponsible to report that the storm could hit?
And who listens to weathermen anyway? I say if you want to find out what the weathers going to be like, stick your head out the window. Major storm warnings are the only things I want
to hear about.
posted by mikhail
on Jan 5, 2002 -
Killer Paid Online Data Broker for Material Obtained Through Trickery
A stalker who eventually murdered his victim acquired her home address via a company named Docusearch
. However, Docusearch didn't get it via database mining, but through a process they call "pretexting" (aka "human engineering" or "pretending to be someone else"). Docusearch, on the stalkers behalf, called the victim's business associates posing as an insurance rep or some such, and tricked the colleagues into giving over the victim's address. Legal? Perfectly legal. Ethical? Maybe. It's a tried and true investigative technique employed by private investigators for decades. It reminds us once again that the human dufus at the next desk over is the biggest security risk. However, this is an issue of an investigative firm exercising a typical, long-standing investigative practice for a purpose that, unfortunately, turned nefarious. Given that, why did the Post put the online
data broker spin on the article?
posted by monkey-mind
on Jan 4, 2002 -
"I’d keep guns off the streets if I could -- keep them off people, off cops, off everybody. They’re just built to kill people, and that’s no good. Sometimes I feel like turning people in -- like when there’s a shooting in front of my house. But something always stops me. I grew up in this place. I knew these people before they even started dealing with guns. Those are the people who watch my back when I need them. They’re like family -- I can’t turn them in." Jesus Gonzalez reports on the illegal handgun trade
in Brooklyn, NY, as part of a Marketplace series on the underground economy
posted by sudama
on Nov 15, 2001 -
The crimes they are a'changing.
This comes from the daily police log of The Union newspaper Grass Valley/Nevada City, CA. Surveillance cameras (and apparently not very effective ones) were stolen while mystery powders kept the cops hopping.
posted by tnadeau
on Oct 25, 2001 -
Time to Crack Down on Cock.
"The driver had no license plate but plenty of chickens -- all of them clucking from the back seat and trunk ... The officer knew what he was seeing: The suspect was headed to a cockfight -- and jail."
posted by bclark
on Oct 25, 2001 -
Greyhound suspends service.
Rinearson said when she refused to give up her seat, "He just went up to the bus driver and like slit his throat. And the bus driver turned the wheel and the bus tipped over." Normally, just another whack-job ending his days. But the annoying thing was listening to the radio this morning on the way to work and all they could keep wondering about aloud was what the guy's nationality was. What, is the first reaction of normal people when they see a little spark or ember to immediately rush over and fan it into raging flames? Are people no longer able to think critically? Is your response to the situation going to be different if the nationality answer is 'American' vs. 'Saudi'? What does this say about you?
posted by warhol
on Oct 3, 2001 -
So you read the "Madman and the Professor"
and thought it interesting. Edward Ruloff
is another murdering philologist with the extra cachet that his 1871 trial for killing a dry-goods clerk was one of the first to test the admissability of photographs
as evidence. The Supreme Court agreed with lower rulings that they could be allowed; Ruloff was hanged
. In 1845, he had been accused of murdering his wife and child and was imprisoned for ten years for the abduction of his wife, but without a corpus delecti
, he could not be convicted for the murder of his child. This man
is writing a biography of Ruloff; a publisher could do a lot worse.
posted by Mo Nickels
on Sep 26, 2001 -
The charges of "lewd conduct against a child under 14" against Paula Poundstone have been DROPPED.
She pleaded no contest to a couple other charges related to the fact that she had been driving drunk with her kids in the car. I'm posting this because child molestation charges ruin careers and entire lives. Since we covered the initial charges here quite a bit, it's only fair to note her apparent innocence just as prominently, especially during a time like this when any non-attack news is being largely ignored. (Indeed, this story itself is nearly two days old.)
posted by aaron
on Sep 13, 2001 -
Brooklyn Tenant Is Charged With Murdering City Marshal
"As the marshal, Erskine G. Bryce, lay injured and disoriented, the police said, Ms. Jones bounded down the steps, beat him with an aluminum rod and stripped him of his .380-caliber pistol. The attack ended, the police said, only after she splashed him with a flammable liquid, took out a cigarette lighter and set him afire." (Free NY Times registration required)
posted by dayvin
on Aug 23, 2001 -
Another stupid parent story,
without which your day just wouldn't be complete. Mother and Stepfather, who lobbied for a stricter definition of 'rape' in Ohio, are charged with raping their daughter (via artificial insemination). I hate people.
posted by mudbug
on Jul 27, 2001 -