• Irony? Robs hot dog stand, accidentally shots himself in the hot dog

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    An outstanding effort by a Chicago robber, 19-year-old Terrion Pouncy:

    A man who robbed a Far South Side hot dog stand accidentally shot himself in the leg and penis as he tried to escape early Tuesday, according to court documents.

    Police were called . . . regarding a person shot and found Pouncy with two gunshot wounds, one to the right thigh and one to the penis, according to his arrest report. –Chicago Tribune

    Comment: Oh, the other prisoners are gonna enjoy this story

  • Didn’t Perry Mason use this defense once? Man arrested for drunkenness claims he “time traveled to warn of aliens”

    The AP news story is here.

    He [claimed he] was from the year 2048.

    The man told police that he wanted to warn the people of Casper [Wyoming] that aliens will arrive next year, and that they should leave as soon as possible. ….

    The man told police he was only able to time travel because aliens filled his body with alcohol. He noted that he was supposed to be transported to the year 2018, not this year. –Associated Press

    Since I have extensive connections with the constabulary, I was able to secure a photograph of the defendant.

     

  • Armed Robbers Accidentally Run Into Suburban Police Station While Trying to Flee Officers

    This story from NBC5 in Chicago:

    Three Chicago men were charged with armed robbery after they accidentally ran inside a suburban police department while trying to avoid being captured, authorities said.

    Squad cars chased a speeding vehicle along southbound Route 41, exiting on Old Deerfield Road in Highland Park before the vehicle crashed at Richfield Avenue.

    The crash happened adjacent to a parking lot at the Highland Park Police Station.

    Highland Park Deputy Chief Timothy Wilinski told the Chicago Tribune the men tried to flee the scene of the crash, but one was taken into custody in the parking lot of the police station. Two others allegedly continued into the lobby of the building, where they then hid behind a vending machine. Eventually, they too were taken into custody. –NBC 5 Chicago 

    So, to recap:

    ◊ Instead of making a clean getaway, they are chased by the police
    ◊ They crash the getaway car
    ◊ Trying to escape on foot, they run into a police station.

    I have the perfect song for these miscreants. If it wasn’t for bad luck, they wouldn’t have no luck at all.

    ♦ Tip of the hat to Robert May for this gem.

     

     

     

  • What’s the worst time to rob a bar? When it is hosting a policeman’s retirement party

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    The New York Post reports:

    The armed crooks entered the take-out portion of Monaghan’s Pub in Woodlawn (Maryland) on Tuesday night and held up an employee at gunpoint before running off with an undisclosed amount of cash, police said….

    “At that time, the person who had been behind the counter knew that there was a retirement party for a police officer happening, so they went into the other portion and alerted the officers to the fact that they had just been involved in an armed robbery,” Baltimore County Police Officer Jennifer Peach said.

    Off-duty officers at the shindig quickly ran out and took the men into custody. –New York Post

    And the quote of the day by Baltimore County Police Office Jennifer Peach:

    I’m sure that they weren’t planning on there being a large room filled with police officers.

    A glance at Mr. McCoy (below) confirms her observation.

  • Quick tip: Rethink that plan to hijack a car filled with football players

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    Angelo Martinez had a gun, but even that didn’t help him.

    He got the crap knocked out of him, accord to KOAT News.

    At some point Martinez fumbled the gun and one of the men jumped in the car and punched the suspect in the face.

    The rest of the players followed suit and beat Martinez up before restraining him. They also found a knife in Martinez’s waistband and were able to get the gun from him, which they discovered was actually fake.

    When officers arrived they arrested Martinez.

    Officers also found a note that belonged to Martinez that said, “Give me the keys to your wip and a nobody get heart. I know where you live so don’t make me kill.” –KOAT News

  • ZipDialog Roundup for Sunday, August 6

    Articles chosen with care. Your comments welcomed.
    Linked articles in bold purple

    UN bans key North Korean exports because of missile tests (Reuters)

    Could cut up to 1/3 of the state’s meager $3 billion export revenue.

    Nikki Haley, America’s ambassador to the UN, offered a weary, pessimistic assessment:

    We should not fool ourselves into thinking we have solved the problem. Not even close. The North Korean threat has not left us, it is rapidly growing more dangerous. –Amb. Nikki Haley to UN Security Council

    Meanwhile, China and Russia sharply criticized US deployment of anti-missile systems in South Korea.

    Related Story: US tells China it will be watching closely to see if Beijing actually executes the promised sanctions (Associated Press)

    Comment: This will only get more dangerous.

    Administration leakers should not be hard to catch, says Washington Post.

    The headline news has been Attorney General Jeff Sessions stepping up the number of investigations and saying that journalists who receive classified information should not be immune if lives are endangered (a questionable argument, in light of Supreme Court precedents).

    The Post, citing cyber-security experts, lists four steps in the investigations:

    1. Find a pool of suspects
    2. Shrink your pool using digital tools
    3. Subpoena and grab personal data
    4. Question and prosecute

    Comment: The key thing to notice about these leaks is that they are not whistle-blower leaks, designed to expose wrongdoing. They are designed either to damage the President or his administration or, alternatively, to win internal battles over policy. Neither is tolerable when the information is classified. The damage to the country should be obvious.

    Gang Warfare: Arch-rivals of MS-13, the Barrio-18 gang are equally lethal (Daily Mail)

    Barrio-18 was founded in Los Angeles and has now spread across the US, Canada, Mexico, and Central America. It has “an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 members across 20 US states and is linked to drugs, murder, kidnappings and other violent crime from Central America to Canada.”

    ◆◆ Two “Dumb Criminal” Stories so breathtaking in their stupidity, I have to include both

    Meth dealer walks into a bank with a $1 million dollar bill (fake, of course) and a deposit slip. What could possibly go wrong? (Daily Mail)

    Comment: Such a carefully thought-out plan, too. Where did he trip up?

     Anthony Thomas is an impressive co-winner of “perp of the day” (New York Daily News)

    Comment: “Does this mean I don’t get the job?”

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  • The guy is under arrest, but he knows the easy way out

    Actual headline:

    Man under arrest hands cop ‘Get out of jail free’ Monopoly card

    Usually, articles like this conclude with the immortal phrase, “Authorities believe alcohol was involved.”

    Our hero apparently uses other substances.

    Deputies ran the passenger’s ID and learned that he was wanted on a controlled substance warrant, news station KARE reported.

    When they searched his person, officers found the ace up his sleeve: the Monopoly card.

    The resourceful suspect told officers that he kept the board game card handy “just in case.”

    Unfortunately for him, police did not accept his Monopoly card and took him to an actual jail. Fox News, link here

  • ZipDialog Roundup for Friday, June 2

    Articles chosen with care. Comments welcomed. Linked articles in bold purple

     The big news is President Trump announcing the US would withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, with predictable reactions

    Analysis

    • All Democrats denounced Trump for two reasons: abdicating US leadership of a multilateral effort and weakening commitment to environmental protection
    • Centrist Republicans and virtually all big businesses opposed the withdrawal; Mitt Romney was very vocal about it, for instance
    • Trump’s base loved it and loved his dual rationale: jobs and America First.

    The arguments for the agreement are that America has isolated itself from a global movement, backed by scientists, that supports collective action to slow global warming, some of it man-made.

    The counter-argument is that the costs to the US are very high but positive effects on the climate are vanishingly small. There is also a fairness and effectiveness argument that China and India’s sweet deals (basically, they don’t have to do anything) mean that some of the world’s biggest polluters are unchecked by this deal.

     What is being overlooked in the furor over the withdrawal? That the process by which the US entered the accord. That created its own problems.

    The Paris deal was never a treaty, only a presidential agreement (like the Iran Deal). After all, treaties need ratification, and that’s a higher hurdle. Why not just let the President sign it himself, call it something besides a treaty, and skip that whole pesky ratification thingy?

    That’s just what President Obama did with the Paris Climate Agreement, and just what he did with the Iran nuclear deal. The US seems to be abandoning the quaint idea that its major commitments should be treaties, just as it has abandoned the idea that it should vote to declare wars. We’ve been at war repeatedly over the last few decades, but the last war the US declared was on December 8, 1941.

    Avoiding the treaty process comes at a price, however. What one president signs, the next one can undo. That’s what Pres. Trump did on Thursday.

    There is a second, less obvious problem that is also being overlooked. US environmental groups were planning lawsuits to compel the government to implement Obama’s promises under the Paris Accords. Of course, the environmental bureaucracies themselves would want to implement those promises, too. The substance of those actions might be good or bad, depending on your perspective, but no one could argue that they were determined by laws passed by Congress and signed by the President.

    Skirting these constitutionally-designed, democratic processes has become a standard feature of modern American government.

    It has been a hallmark of progressivism from the beginning, in the early 20th century. A core principle of the progressive movement, initially aimed at corrupt, big-city patronage machines, was decisionmaking by “disinterested” experts: technocrats. Today, that has morphed into rule by regulation, with regulations poured out of bureaucracies whose employees are immune from firing because of civil-service protections (a key feature of the progressive program, designed to block firings by partisan politicians).

    So, one hidden effect of the withdrawal is to slow the pace of new environmental regulations, which the EPA would issue to implement the Paris Accords, either of its own volition or because the courts required them.

     Trump administration asks Supreme Court to Reinstate its Travel Ban  (New York Times)

    Comment: We don’t know if the Court will take the case. If it doesn’t, the lower court decisions to block Trump’s order will stand.

     Mitch Daniels, the nation’s most innovative university leader, discusses Purdue’s purchase of for-profit Kaplan  (Indianapolis Star)

    Purdue President Mitch Daniels painted the move as Purdue’s ticket into the future.

    “None of us know how fast or in what direction online higher education will evolve, but we know its role will grow and we intend that Purdue be positioned to be a leader as that happens,” Daniels told the Education Writers Association.

    Daniels has been working to make a Purdue education more accessible since stepping onto the West Lafayette campus. Purdue’s been on a tuition freeze since 2013, became the first major U.S. research university to offer income-sharing agreements and struck a deal with Amazon to lower textbook costs for its students.

     

    The bid to acquire Kaplan, though, is taking innovation to a new level and was seen as a tectonic shift in the higher education landscape when it was announced unexpectedly in April. –Indianapolis Star

     Massachusetts judge denies defendant’s motion to juggle–yes, juggle–at his trial  (AP, via St. Mary Now, Louisiana)

    The defendant, who is representing himself, wanted to juggle to show “he was just clowning around when he allegedly tried to rob a convenience store with a toy gun.”

     

     

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