<![CDATA[NBC 10 Philadelphia - Weird News]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/weird http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC10_40x125.png NBC 10 Philadelphia http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com en-us Thu, 28 May 2015 06:28:38 -0400 Thu, 28 May 2015 06:28:38 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Airline Orders Pizza for Grounded Philly Passengers]]> Wed, 27 May 2015 16:31:04 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Delta+Plane+Pizza+Philly+Knoxville+Atlanta+Pizza+Delta.jpg

Call in the pizza guy!

That’s what the crew of a Delta flight from Philadelphia did after the Atlanta-bound aircraft landed in Knoxville, Tennessee instead Tuesday afternoon.

Bad weather in Atlanta caused the crew of Delta Flight 561, which took off from Philly just after 2 p.m., to land more than 200 miles from their destination.

The diverted flight landed in Knoxville around 3:50 p.m. As dinner time began to approach, the pilot announced to the passengers that they ordered pizza. A short time later dozens of pizza pies arrived.

“It’s part of a standing procedure at Delta to get food and beverages to delayed customers – whether it be a severe weather event that drove the diversion last night or a delay in airport due to an aircraft mechanical issue,” said Delta Air Lines spokesman Morgan Durrant.

The pizzas came from Marco's Pizza in Maryville, Tennessee. The pizza chain, which also has locations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, delivered about 65 pizzas to the airport Tuesday.

The Philly flight, originally scheduled to last about two hours, finally took off from Knoxville around 6:15 p.m. and passengers, with bellies full of pizza, arrived in Atlanta just after 7 p.m.

The Philly flight wasn’t the only Atlanta-bound Delta plane forced to land in Knoxville that got pizza delivered Tuesday.

Wittenmyer was on an Atlanta-bound plane from California.

Vazquez, who was on a diverted flight from Denver, told NBC10 that the delivery “made everyone so much happier. When they announced they ordered pizza the plane erupted in cheer and applause.”

Delivering pizzas to diverted planes was a “team effort with the flight crew and our airport representatives,” said Durrant.

Delta even delivered pizza to passengers on an Atlanta-bound flight that wound up diverted to Columbia, South Carolina.

And, in case you were wondering, passengers had their choice between plain, pepperoni or supreme, according to passengers.



Photo Credit: Twitter - @BillyTheKidWit / Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Man in Fla. Reels in 552-Pound Fish]]> Wed, 27 May 2015 12:56:51 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/052715+massive+grouper+chew+on+this+tv.jpg

A video showing a southwest Florida man reeling in a massive Goliath Grouper from a small Kayak is making headlines nationwide.

As reported by NBC affiliate WBBH, Jon Black of the Crazy Lure Tackle shop in Cape Coral says he's reeled in "the largest bottom fish ever from a Kayak" off Sanibel Island, which is just under a 20 mile drive from Fort Myers.

In the video, the cameraman is heard screaming "that's a big boy!" as Black reels in the huge fish.

Since it was published on Tuesday, the video has been viewed more than 66,000 times.

According to the video's description, the fish measured at 83 inches long and over 73 inches in girth, putting it at an estimated weight of 552 pounds.



Photo Credit: Chewonthis.tv]]>
<![CDATA[Ducklings Rescued From KOP Mall Storm Drain]]> Fri, 22 May 2015 16:47:15 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/ducklings+king+of+prussia+storm+drain+rescue+copy.jpg

Thanks to a keen eye and a helpful hand, nine ducklings were rescued at the King of Prussia mall Friday afternoon.

Emily Connolly was walking around the KOP Plaza near Seasons 52 on the Nordstrom side of the mall when her family noticed a mother duck walking with only one baby following behind her.

That didn’t make sense to them, so a little investigation led to a potentially difficult issue: nine ducklings had fallen through a grate and into a storm drain.

“Our security contacted one of our maintenance associates, who removed the storm drain and allowed us to go down and rescue the ducks,” said Kathy Smith, Director of Marketing for the King of Prussia Mall.

Once a plan had been established, it took just a few minutes to pull off the grate, venture down into the storm drain, and reunite the ducklings with their mother and sibling. According to Smith, maintenance worker Dave Romano performed the rescue.

“It’s really just a great feel-good story,” added Smith.

The ducklings were OK and were all taken to a wildlife rescue. Apparently, this isn't the first time ducks have been stuck in a storm drain.

"Seasonally, our people try to make an effort to keep an eye out," Smith concluded. "We've done rescue operations like this in the past."



Photo Credit: Emily Connolly]]>
<![CDATA[$30 Hot Dogs Outrage NYC Customers]]> Wed, 20 May 2015 23:10:02 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/216*120/hot+dog+vendor+rip+off.JPG

UPDATE: NYC Hot Dog Vendor Under Investigation After Report Exposes Outrageous Pricing

Meet Ahmed Mohammed. He might be the most expensive hot dog vendor in New York, especially if he thinks you're a tourist.

NBC 4 New York cameras recently captured him trying to charge a man named David $15 for a hot dog and a pretzel near the World Trade Center.

"I said, 'What are you, a crook?'" David later told NBC 4 New York. "I'm not a tourist, so I know the price in New York."

Customer after customer recounted how the vendor tried to charge them $20 to $30 for a hot dog.

"I just felt like I was getting ripped off, and it's just making the 9/11 grounds like a big tourist trap," one woman said.

Ben from New Jersey left his bitten hot dog behind when he was told the price.

"He was like, 'Fifteen, maybe 10,'" he said. "And I left my bitten hot dog there. That was it."

Jessica Lappin of the Alliance for Downtown New York said "it gives New York a bad name."

"To rip-off somebody, to charge them $35 for a hot dog and a pretzel, that leaves a terrible impression," she said.

Lappin learned about Mohammed when fights started breaking out last week over his prices.

Ron Wolfgang, who is in charge of security for the Alliance for Downtown New York, said, there have been "five times since May 13 where we've observed altercations on the street over the prices being charged for hot dogs, pretzels, water, soda."

NBC 4 New York's own cameras captured the price of a hot dog changing by the minute: $3 for some, $30 for others.

Several customers also accused him of short-changing them after overcharging them. One woman pointed out that he had only given her $5 in change when he was supposed to hand her $8; another woman said he didn't even give her change at all.

One woman named Ruth said, "He gave me $5 back, and I thought, '$15 for a pretzel and a water?'"

When a self-identified NBC 4 New York reporter asked the price of a hot dog, Mohammed said $3. When asked why the price changes, he claimed not to speak English -- even though cameras had captured him speaking English earlier, asking customers: "Yes, guys. Yes, sir, you need anything to eat or drink? Have a good day, guys."

Part of the problem is that Mohammed's prices aren't posted, as required by the city's Department of Consumer Affairs. At a hot dog cart around the corner, for example, there's no question how much a hot dog costs -- it's listed at $1.

The Department of Consumer Affairs encourages anyone who is charged more than the posted price -- or encounters a stand with no price listed at all -- to file a complaint at nyc.gov/consumers or to call 311.

In the meantime, the department says it will investigate Mohammed and his practices at the stand.


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<![CDATA[What's a Harbor Seal Doing in NJ Creek?]]> Tue, 19 May 2015 13:11:28 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Rancocas+Seal+Rancocas+Creek+New+Jersey+Seal.jpg

The weather could be to blame for why a harbor seal has been seen swimming in the freshwater Rancocas Creek in South Jersey.

The seal has been spotted near Willingboro in Burlington County.

Bob Schoelkopf of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center tells the Philadelphia Inquirer it's not unusual for seals to follow herring in the spring and not realize how far upstream they have gone.

Schoelkopf speculates the lack of rain may have increased the salinity in the creek and the seal may return to Delaware Bay after a heavy rain.

The center is keeping an eye on the seal.



Photo Credit: Michael Castagner]]>
<![CDATA[Arsonist Targets NJ Police Station]]> Mon, 18 May 2015 17:44:55 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/dfw-generic-fire.jpg

Someone torched a New Jersey police station early Monday morning.

The alleged arsonist however didn’t succeed in his or her attempt to burn down the Tewksbury Township Police Department located along Route 517 around 5:40 a.m.

“This appears to be an intentional act that could have had the potential to engulf the entire structure and trap occupants,” said Hunterdon County Prosecutor Anthony P. Kearns III.

Luckily, crews from the nearby Fairmount & Oldwick Fire Departments and the Tewksbury Rescue Squad quickly arrived at the scene and got the fire under control.

“The potential for death or serious injury was averted,” said Kearns. “I commend the first responders and the officers for their quick response.”

Authorities didn’t release any information on the full extent of damage. They asked anyone with information on the arson to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-321-0010 or online, or text messaging “HCTIPS” and a tip message to 274637 (CRIMES).



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA["Petite" Inmate Slips Off Handcuffs, Escapes Jail]]> Wed, 13 May 2015 20:45:39 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/5-13-15+Kelly+Smith+Prisoner.JPG

A prisoner slipped out of her handcuffs Tuesday evening and ran out of sight from authorities at the Ventura Police Department in Southern California.

Kelly Smith, 23, of Ventura, was being booked Tuesday night on charges of a stolen vehicle and assault with a deadly weapon when she managed to escape custody, authorities said.

Her arrest stemmed from an attempt to flee from officers when she nearly struck one of them with a stolen truck loaded with guns and ammo.

While she was seated in the booking area, she slipped her handcuffs off and ran out of the downstairs door. Once officers realized she had fled, they went after her.

She was last seen in the area of Walker Street and Glacier Avenue near some of the commercial businesses.

Smith was last seen wearing a blue shirt and bluejeans. Her hair is dyed red. She is wanted for escaping custody, possession of a stolen vehicle, assault with a deadly weapon and two unrelated misdemeanor warrants.

"Anytime you have someone in custody you want to keep them in custody," said Cmdr. Ryan Weeks, of the Ventura Police Department.

"The car backed up and took off nearly striking one of the officers, they jumped out of the way."

Weeks said Smith and a passenger stole the truck they were in and tried to take off when police spotted them.

Weeks said the stolen truck had guns, ammunition, and gun powder.

Neighbors said Smith nearly escaped twice during the arrest, once after she was pulled from the vehicle and held on the ground and then again from the patrol cruiser.

Neighbors credit a member of the homeowners association for tackling her and holding her for police.

She complained of pain in her back and neck and was taken to the hospital, Weeks said.

After about 11 hours, she was cleared to be booked into the Ventura jail when she escaped.

"She was handcuffed, sitting down on a bench and cuffed to the bench," Weeks said.

She sat alone in a hallway facing what police describe as a glass window.

They think she squatted low enough out of view and then crawled out the door.

"Very skinny. Very petite wrists ... She was able to get both of her hands out from the cuffs and was able to sneak out," Weeks said.

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<![CDATA[Man Struck by Car Dies 35 Years Later]]> Tue, 12 May 2015 10:57:22 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Road-Generic1.jpg

A Pennsylvania man died from the injuries he suffered during a car accident over three decades ago, according to the Lehigh County Coroner's Office.

James Koplik, 53, of Bethlehem, was struck by a vehicle approximately 35 years ago in New York State. Koplik died at the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Muhlenberg on Saturday at 11:19 a.m. from complications of the injuries he received from the crash, the Lehigh County Coroner’s Office. The manner of death was ruled an accident.

Officials have not revealed the specific injuries he suffered or where he was struck in New York.

The coroner’s office is searching for the next of kin for Koplik. Anyone with information on his family should call the Lehigh County Coroner’s Office at 610-782-3426.



Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Philly Woman Arrested 8 Times For Dining and Dashing]]> Fri, 08 May 2015 18:26:38 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/janine+thomas.JPG

A Philadelphia woman is accused of walking out of a restaurant without paying her bill — for the eighth time!

Janeen Thomas has been charged with theft after restaurant workers say she neglected to pay her bill Tuesday night at the vegan eatery Vedge on Locust Street.

Thomas enjoyed three long island ice teas and a full-course meal, according to the restaurant. She then allegedly told wait staff she was going outside to smoke, but never returned. 

Tuesday's incident isn't the first time Thomas has been arrested for ditching her bill. Since February, Thomas has avoided paying her bill at least seven times. 

“I think she’s extremely opportunistic," Philadelphia resident Monica Antonucci said. "I think we live in an age where people can conscious just about everything they want.” 

Police cautioned Center City restaurants to remain on the lookout for Thomas with a social media post warning of her habit. 

"Unfortunately, it's not a victimless crime. We're actually losing money to wait on that table," restaurant manager Matt Deutsch said. "You're paying to wait on that table."

Thomas was jailed in lieu of $35,000.  

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<![CDATA[Vandals Alter Mill Valley Church Sign]]> Fri, 08 May 2015 11:19:15 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/mill-valley-church-vandalism.jpg

Some vandals struck a North Bay church, altering the message on a sign to display the words "Jesus had two dads and he turned out just fine."

It happened Sunday night at Mt. Tamalpais United Methodist Church in Mill Valley.

Volunteers helped clean it up.

Church leaders even turned it into a teachable moment. The cleaned sign now reads: "All Welcome - Vandals Too.”



Photo Credit: Mt. Tamalpais United Methodist Church
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[Unbuckled SEPTA Driver Falls Out of Seat, Crashes Bus]]> Fri, 08 May 2015 06:53:31 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/SEPTA+bus+driver+falls+out+of+seat.jpg

An unbuckled seat belt set off a series of events that led to a SEPTA bus careening out of control, jumping a concrete barrier and landing on train tracks in South Philadelphia, the transit authority said. The crash injured the bus driver and two passengers.

The Route 29 bus driver was making a U-turn along Columbus Boulevard at Dickinson Street around 6 p.m. Tuesday when she slipped out of her seat and lost control of the bus.

SEPTA spokeswoman Jerri Williams said the driver was trying to detour around a CSX freight train that blocked the bus' usual path at Tasker Street. Bus drivers are required to wear seat belts at all times, Williams said.

"We believe that this accident would not have occurred if she had her seat belt on," Williams said.

Surveillance video from onboard the bus showed the driver, a 10-year veteran, falling from her seat and the violent crash. Two women passengers were thrown forward from the impact. All three were hospitalized and suffered non-life-threatening injuries. A third passenger was not hurt.

CSX workers on the train, stopped just feet from the crash, immediately rushed to render aid and call 911.

Witness Lauren Ferrett told NBC10 on Tuesday it appeared the bus took the U-turn at a high rate of speed.

SEPTA continues to investigate the incident. The driver will face disciplinary action and could lose her job, Williams said.

 



Photo Credit: SEPTA
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Goats Gone Wild]]> Thu, 07 May 2015 10:38:17 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/212*120/5-6-15-Goats+Agoura+Hills.JPG

Dozens of grazing goats were on the loose in Southern California on Wednesday after roaming down their hillside job site and into the street.

Video footage captured in Agoura Hills by NBC4 viewer Joe Cascio shows the group of at least 50 goats descending the hillside and eating the green grass in the center divider of the city's street.

"There's goats everywhere!" Cascio exclaimed while recording cellphone video of the goats.

Video showed cars stopped in the street as goats — and spectators — filled the roadway.

He described the goat sighting as "bizarre" and as something that would happen "only in Ventura County."

Community members in the Morrison Ranch area of Agoura Hills hired the herd of goats to eat brush for two weeks, according to the Lost Hills Sheriff's Station. Morrison Ranch residents wanted an environmentally friendly way to clear the weeds, brush and other invasive plants.

The weed eaters somehow got loose around 10 a.m. Wednesday on Grey Rock Road and East Thousand Oaks Boulevard in Agoura Hills, officials said.

The two officers on scene were "severely outnumbered" and unable to wrangle the herd of goats, Cascio said.

Passers-by pulled over on the side of the road to catch a glimpse of the goats, which Cascio said were "intent on eating."

The eco-goats ran back up the hillside after a while, Cascio said.



Photo Credit: Joe Cascio]]>
<![CDATA[Verizon Call Led to Heart Attack?]]> Thu, 07 May 2015 12:50:02 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Cell+Phone+Generic.jpg

A Virginia woman has sued Verizon Wireless for $2.35 million, claiming the company caused her to have a heart attack during a customer service call.

Angela Hawkins, 53, filed a lawsuit in Chesapeake on Wednesday, The Virginian-Pilot reports. Hawkins told the newspaper she called Verizon last year to straighten out a billing problem. Representatives accused her of saying she was going to kill everyone and threatened to call police.

Hawkins's attorney says the call was so upsetting she was scared the police were going to arrest her. The day after the call, an EKG revealed she had a heart attack. Hawkins underwent surgery and spent four days in the hospital.

The lawsuit claims both negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

A spokesman for Verizon Wireless declined to comment.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Snorkeler Finds Plastic Skeletons Having Underwater Tea Party]]> Wed, 06 May 2015 15:04:47 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/f_skeleton_partay_150506_6a819ada04e4d948f980d79e51334ebb.nbcnews-ux-640-360.jpg

A pair of sunglass-clad skeletons were caught lounging in lawnchairs beneath the Colorado River on Monday.

Divers discovered the duo 40 feet beneath the river near the Arizona-California border on Monday morning, after a snorkeler spotted the bones and reported them to police, thinking they were real.

"When firefighter Foerstner located the alleged remains, he found it to be an underwater tea party with two fake skeletons sitting in lawn chairs," the sheriff's department said in a statement.

Divers plan to recover the skeletons later this week, and some officials are considering placing them outside the sheriff's office as a joke, according to the sherriff's office.

Officials say they don't plan to locate the person responsible for the skeletons.

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<![CDATA[Man Dies After Fall Inside Center City Elevator]]> Wed, 06 May 2015 07:09:11 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/elevator+generic.jpg

A man has died after falling inside a Center City Philadelphia high-rise elevator and hitting his head, police tell NBC10.

The 39-year-old collapsed inside a lift at 1700 Arch Street just before 8 p.m. Tuesday, police said. Officials believe he may have suffered a medical issue at that time.

Police said the man's head hit the elevator floor causing sudden death. He was taken from the building to nearby Hahnemann University Hospital and pronounced dead.

Police have not released his identity. The incident remains under investigation.

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<![CDATA[Urns End Up on Thrift Store Shelf]]> Tue, 05 May 2015 07:41:11 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/urn+bonnie+throp.jpg

Authorities are trying to figure out how urns containing what could be human ashes ended up on the shelf of a thrift store in Connecticut.

Angela Dupree, of Shelton, said she found them by chance while shopping at the Savers store on Route 1 last Thursday.

"I was actually looking for bakery pans for my friend's bakery," she said.

Dupree said she spotted the urns on a shelf in the housewares department. Both containers were sealed and marked with $3.99 price tags.

"I went down the home decor aisle and I noticed two marble – they looked like urns to me," Dupree said. "I tried to even pull the top off, because this can't be what I think it is."

But, she said, it was. One of the urns had a name on it – Bonnie Throp – and the dates 1966-1983.

Dupree brought the urns to store employees and explained what she had found.

"They were totally surprised too," Dupree said. "They had no idea that's what it was."

Store management in turn alerted the Orange Police Department and the local health department.

The urns and their contents are now being held in a secure vault at a nearby cemetery until someone can explain what – or who – might be inside.

"Because we are no longer in possession of the urns, I'm hoping the cemetery can help. I'm sure they will do whatever they can to help find the owner," Savers communications director Sarah Gaugl said, adding that she will "make sure they are handled in a respectful manner."

The urns lack the metal markings that cremation experts say are typically used to identify urns. One expert said families often divide ashes into various containers to be dispersed among family members.

It's not clear how the urns ended up at Savers. A spokesperson for the company said it's possible the urns were mistakenly donated, then listed for sale by someone who didn't realize what they were.

"I'm sure that was not done intentionally," Dupree said. "I'm sure the family wants it back."

So far, NBC Connecticut has not been able to locate death or cremation records for Bonnie Throp from any of the state's 19 certified crematories.

There are no immediate plans to test the contents of the urns, according to the manager of the cemetery where they're being held.

EDITORS NOTE: An earlier version of this story stated the location of the thrift store as Southern California. It is located in Orange, Conn.

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<![CDATA[Mystery Marathon Kiss: Man's Wife Responds With Letter]]> Mon, 04 May 2015 17:29:55 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/rainy+marathon+getty.jpg

Barbara Tatge successfully finished her first ever Boston Marathon this year. If that was not exciting enough, she also snagged a surprise kiss from a spectator in Wellesley, Massachusetts, following a dare from her daughter, Paige. After seeing the photo of the kiss, her daughter began a quest to find the man her mother smooched, reaching out to the Townsman last week.

According to Wicked Local Wellesley, the mystery man's wife was also running the marathon for the first time and saw the media attention the story has been receiving. She wrote a letter to Tatge via the Townsman saying the story has been fun, but she and her husband would like to stay anonymous.

"When the story aired on the news we were pretty surprised," said the kisser's wife. "I'm not mad. Believe me, our friends have gotten a lot of mileage out of this story and I have thoroughly enjoyed watching them give my husband grief!"

The Townsman verified the woman's claims by asking for photos of the man's outfit from the original kiss picture.

"I accepted my daughter's good-hearted dare of reversing the Wellesley tradition" said Tatge, in reference to the women of Wellesley College who traditionally smooch passing runners. "And a good natured man accepted my request for a photo. Moving forward i will revert to only kissing single men."

Tatge also apologized to the man for any unwanted media attention it has caused him and his wife. Tatge has been contacted by various talk shows and television stations in her hometown of Memphis.

Although Tatge did not find her prince charming, she said, "I am touched by the outpouring of support of strangers that wanted a fairytale ending."

"While this may not be the ending that you had hoped for, the spontaneous, silly moment in Wellesley captured the fun, energy and spirit of the Boston Marathon," the man's wife said in her letter to Tatge. "I greatly admire your spunk and courage and wish you many happy races in the future. Congratulations on your Boston finish!"

Tatge, who began running after surviving a rare form of cancer, said she is not done with running.

She hopes to qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2017 but won't be accepting any more dares to kiss strangers again.
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Man's Ear Sliced in Fruit Fight]]> Mon, 04 May 2015 07:46:41 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/bananas+generic.jpg

A Staten Island man who was arguing with a bodega worker over a bad bunch of bananas sliced the worker’s ear with a broken beer bottle, according to a report.

The 35-year-old man was arguing with the bodega worker outside the store on Broadway in West Brighton just before 10:30 p.m., reported the Staten Island Advance.

When the worker asked him to leave the store, the man broke a Heineken bottle and smashed the victim over the head, the paper reported.

Officers reportedly found a 9-inch kitchen knife in the man’s sweatshirt pocket. He is charged with assault, criminal possession of a weapon, unlawful knife possession and harassment.

The victim sustained a laceration to the back of his left ear, according to the SI Advance. 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Pa. Eagle Cam Goes Cloudy]]> Mon, 04 May 2015 21:55:51 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000010244261_1200x675_439547971531.jpg Millions have been watching a livestream of two baby eagles since they hatched in York, Pennsylvania. But many have noticed a recent development: the cam is blurry! Game Commission Officials believe it's eagle waste.]]> <![CDATA[Man Takes Ice Cream From Mister Softee Trucks]]> Fri, 01 May 2015 23:58:39 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/199*120/Mister+Softee+Ice+Cream+Truck+Thefts.JPG

It’s not like stealing candy from a baby but it is stealing ice cream from Mister Softee.

Surveillance images captured a man swiping ice cream and money from ice cream trucks parked at a Juniata Park lot in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Philadelphia Police said the man went into several trucks parked at the E Lycoming Street lot taking tasty treats and money while damaging the vehicles.

The man wore a dark-colored coat with a bright stripe across it during the heist where he tried to open doors before breaking into some trucks and even a van.

Police asked anyone who recognizes the ice cream crook to contact East Detective Division Det. Somogyi at 215-686-3243/44.



Photo Credit: Surveillance image released by Philadelphia Police]]>
<![CDATA[Gator Spotted in NJ Pond]]> Fri, 01 May 2015 21:18:27 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Alligator+Pennsauken+Gator+Delaware+River+Tippens+Pond.jpg

An alligator seems to be calling a South Jersey pond home.

A Pennsauken resident was photographing birds near the Delaware River Thursday when he spotted the creature swimming in Tippin's Pond, said Pennsauken Police.

The resident quickly snapped of photo of the gator’s eyes peering out above the water then reported it to police.

It wasn’t clear where the gator came from. If you spot the gator don’t approach it and call police.



Photo Credit: Pennsauken Police]]>
<![CDATA[Baby Ducks Rescued From NJ Storm Drain]]> Thu, 30 Apr 2015 00:45:10 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Ducklings+Rescued1.jpg

A group of motherless ducklings was rescued from a stormwater drain in New Jersey on Tuesday, city officials said.

The nine baby ducks had fallen into a drain at Hamilton Marketplace in Hamilton Township and were unable to escape.

Municipal crews used a jet truck on Tuesday to flush water into the stormwater drains, helping direct the ducklings towards an animal control officer, who was able to rescue eight of the birds.

The ninth duck was plucked from the drain Wednesday morning.

“We have dedicated and compassionate employees serving our residents, and even our local wildlife, here in our community,” Hamilton Township Mayor Kelly Yaede said. "I am proud of the effort these employees demonstrated to rescue the ducklings and transport them to safety."

Because the ducklings' mother was nowhere to be found, the little quackers were taken to the Mercer County Wildlife Center, which cares for injured and young wildlife.

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<![CDATA[Officers Save Cat Stuck in Middle of New Jersey Highway: Police]]> Mon, 27 Apr 2015 13:45:45 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/middletown+highway+cat.jpg

Officers in New Jersey shut down highway lanes to save a frightened feline that somehow got stuck on top of a concrete barrier in the middle of a highway Saturday afternoon.

A driver reported seeing the cat straddling the median divider in the middle of State Highway 36 near Thompson Avenue in Leonardo, according to a Facebook post by the Middletown Township Police Department.

Officers responding to the scene found a “panic-stricken” gray striped cat perched on top of the barrier as cars sped by in both directions. As the officers got closer to the cat, it leapt from the barrier and ran towards the shoulder of the highway and under a police cruiser, where it buried itself in the car’s undercarriage.

Police turned off the car and called a tow truck and animal control to the scene, closing off several lanes of the highway for about an hour. Officers were able to free the cat, which was uninjured.

Police haven’t been able to locate an owner for the cat, which didn’t have a microchip and wasn’t wearing identifying tags. In the meantime, it has been placed with the Humane Society. Police say the owner can claim the cat, which is between 9 and 12 months old, by calling the Middletown health department at 732-615-2095.

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<![CDATA[Bison Herd Shot After Stampeding Through Upstate NY Towns]]> Fri, 24 Apr 2015 18:29:56 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/buffalobuffalobuffalo.jpg

A herd of bison that stampeded through a string of upstate New York towns on Friday after it somehow got loose from a farm near Albany, has been shot.

The 15 creatures, two calves among them, traipsed through several backyards, trampled a fence and even crossed the New York State Thruway as they headed south, local NBC affiliate WNYT reported.

The animals had escaped from Gem Farms in Schodack, and authorities said all had been shot at Schodock Island State Park — a last resort, authorities told WNYT, since they would rather corral the beasts.

The bison were shot by people working for the family that owns the herd, according to WNYT. The son of the bison's owner told the station his family has been trying to corral loose bison for years, with little success.

Authorities were warning locals not to approach the animals, which can weigh more than 1,000 pounds.

"Stay away. Just stay away from them," Bethlehem Police Lt. Thomas Heffernan said. "They’re large, unpredictable animals."

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<![CDATA[Launching Moonshine Into Space]]> Tue, 21 Apr 2015 21:03:26 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Onyx+Moonshine+Space.jpg

Moonshine is going to the moon. Well, almost.

A Connecticut distillery plans to launch a 750-milliliter bottle of moonshine 22 miles into space next month. It will be the first time a full-sized bottle of liquor leaves the earth’s atmosphere.

“Onyx Moonshine is all about attempting things that haven’t been done before, which is the true essence of the American spirit,” Onyx Spirits Company co-founder Adam von Gootkin said in a statement Tuesday. “It’s amazing to think that 150 years ago our ancestors were arrested for illegally selling moonshine and here we are, legally sending a bottle into space. This is just one small adventure of many more to come.”

Company officials will fasten the bottle of liquor to an aeronautical weather balloon, along with a rock glass and silver platter, and launch it into space May 2.

The apparatus – two years in the making – is equipped with GoPro cameras, GPS technology, a radar deflector, parachute and foam covering to protect the bottle when it lands on Long Island Sound.

Rain dates are slated for May 3, 9 and 10 in case weather gets in the way. The exact time and location of the launch is still to be determined, but the East Hartford distillery said it will take place somewhere in western Connecticut.

Onyx Moonshine, which got its start in 2011, announced the launch in observance of Earth Day and the company’s “commitment to sustainable business practices.” The distillery produces the country’s first ultra-premium moonshine and New England’s first aged whiskey.



Photo Credit: Onyx Moonshine
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<![CDATA[Clowns Brawl With Protesters ]]> Mon, 20 Apr 2015 09:59:53 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/186*120/4-18-2015-ClownBrawl.JPG

Clowns brawled with animal rights protesters under a circus big top in San Bernardino Friday night.

Hundreds of spectators watched the fight break out when workers allegedly tried to stop the activists from forcing their way inside after the Ramos Bros. Circus show began.

Two protestors were arrested following the melee, while two circus employees were injured when the fight broke out at 8:08 p.m., according to a San Bernardino Police Department spokesman.

Ringmaster Oliver Ramos claimed his lip was split after he was hit on the face with his megaphone in trying to keep protestors outside.

"All of a sudden when I turned around one of them jumped on top of my uncle - he's over 68-years-old - and they started beating on him and I reacted," Ramos said. "When I pulled them off they hit me with a megaphone in the face and all these ladies started scratching me on the face."

However protester Nicholas Shaw-McMinn claimed they were protesting non-violently, and that protesters were the ones attacked by the circus workers.

"Employees locked us on the property and wouldn't let us leave. They assaulted... multiple protestors, some with weapons," Shaw-McMinn said.

He also claimed one of the workers placed him in a choke hold during the clash.

The activists, who said they are members of the Direct Action Everywhere group, provided video which showed them protesting outside the big top before the melee.

The Ramos Bros. Circus website boasts that the show features "animals from all over the world," showing images of lamas, camels and horses.

Ramos said he does not mind activists protesting on the street but wants them to stay off the property where the circus is performing. He also believes something has to be done to prevent further clashes occurring

"These people are just crazy fanatics… it has to stop. These people are getting out of hand," Ramos said.

However it seems they will not be staying away, as more than 100 protesters are expected to show up for more demonstrations taking place Saturday.

The "Protest Ramos Bros. Circus" Facebook page says: "Traveling animal acts perpetuate animal cruelty, inhumane care, public safety hazards and distorted images of wildlife.

"As compassionate animal lovers we must stop animal entertainment and extend our love to all animals. Animals are not our (sic) to use, they are not our property; they are beings that desire the same freedoms as us."

It also claims circus animals are trained using methods such as whipping, hitting, poking, and shocking with electrical prods.

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<![CDATA[Officers Confiscate Gator While Executing Search Warrant]]> Sun, 19 Apr 2015 15:11:52 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/41815alligator.jpg

It wasn't exactly what they were looking for, but police in New Jersey made a startling discovery Saturday while executing a search warrant: an alligator.

A Long Branch resident apparently was keeping the reptile as a pet, police said. Officers confiscated the beast, which eventually was turned over to the state Division of Fish & Wildlife.

A maximum fine of $25,000 is possible for housing such a reptile, Long Branch police said.

It's likely a new home for the gator will be found in a zoo or aquarium, police said.
 



Photo Credit: Long Branch Police Department]]>