Legally Weird: August 2012 Archives
Legally Weird - The FindLaw Legal Curiosities Blog

August 2012 Archives

Fake Doctor Treats 500 Senior Citizens Over 6 Months

If you want to practice medicine, you typically need to spend four years in undergraduate school, four years in medical school, and then spend another four years in residency. Or, you can make up your credentials as a fake doctor in South Carolina allegedly did.

It appears Ernest Addo could not be bothered with things like studying or knowing anything about medicine before he decided to work as a doctor.

Addo is accused of taking on his friend's identity when he starting practicing as a doctor six months ago at Agape Senior Primary Care. During that time, the fake doctor reportedly met with as many as 500 senior citizen patients in South Carolina, reports The Associated Press.

FL Woman Blames Her DUI on 'Being a Bridesmaid'

It's expensive to be a bridesmaid between the dress, the shoes, and the DUI charges. It's a toss up about which is more expensive but in most cases it's the criminal charge.

Lesley Falcone learned that one the hard way when she was pulled over on Friday night. The Florida woman allegedly told police "this is what I get for being a bridesmaid," after they stopped her for speeding and swerving.

Maybe being a bridesmaid can drive you to drink but it doesn't mean you have to get behind the wheel.

Fraternity Fireworks Fight Leads Cops to Find Drug Stash

What would be dumber than engaging in a full-blown fireworks fight with a neighbor only a few feet away from each other? Engaging in a fraternity fireworks fight while your houses are filled with illegal drugs, as two Miami University frats discovered.

A fraternity fireworks allegedly battle erupted between the neighboring Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Phi Kapp Tau frats, reports the Dayton Daily News. But when police came a knocking, they found a whole lot more than fireworks.

Police had originally responded to the scene after a fire alarm went off at one of the frats. When the police asked to come inside, they were denied admission, reports the Daily News. That's when the police went back and got themselves a search warrant that opened the doors to the two frats.

Chicago Couple Sues Neighbor Over 20 Smelly Cats

'Smelly cat, smelly cat, what are they feeding you?'

Or in this case, why aren't they taking care of you? That's the question Johanna Torres and her husband, Matthew Greenberg, are posing in the lawsuit they filed against their neighbor, Rossana Ioppolo, and their condo association.

The suit alleges that Ioppolo's 20 cats got too smelly and the stink traveled to the neighboring apartment, infecting Torres's and Greenberg's living space and belongings.

That smelly situation is more than an annoyance; it's a legal nuisance.

Being an attentive waitress usually leads to a big tip at the end of a meal. But at a restaurant outside St. Louis, it led to a Red Lobster waitress attack, police say.

Three women from Belleville, Ill., got mad at a waitress for filling their water glasses too frequently last Friday, a witness told St. Louis' KMOX-TV. One of the ladies then allegedly lobbed a glass of water at the waitress, hitting her on the head.

For their next course, the women then beat the wet waitress with their hands -- and a Red Lobster menu.

Bug Spray Burglary: OR Man Attacks Bartender with Repellant

Elmer's Restaurant in Oregon fell victim to a bug spray burglary earlier this week.

Police say that a man looked the part to commit a serious felony. He concealed himself with a green hooded sweatshirt. He covered up traces of fingerprints by wearing gloves. He even wore a blonde wig that was pulled over his face.

The only thing the burglar apparently forgot was the right weapon to commit the crime. Brandishing only bug spray, the suspect robbed the restaurant and got away, reports The Associated Press.

A hot night in Florida got even more heated when an apparent swingers party turned into a brawl, sheriff's deputies say.

The sordid affair happened early Sunday in Spring Hill, Fla., where a man and his girlfriend had brought home different people to have sex with, according to the local Hernando Today. But human nature soon got the best of them.

The man got mad at his girlfriend for having sex with two men. The woman got mad at her boyfriend for having sex with another woman.

And they both got ready to rumble.

Drunk Lab Tech Lowered His Pants, Freed Lab Monkeys

Most people feel sorry for lab rats but no one should feel sorry for lab monkeys who get to roam free like the ones in Coley Mitchell's lab.

The Georgia lab tech was allegedly found on Monday night having a grand old time in the lab in the midst of what appeared to be a pants-off dance-off with the labs inhabitants, a family of monkeys. Mitchell reportedly had his pants off and the monkeys were having a good time out of their cages.

Mitchell just forgot one key rule in throwing an epic party.

Open Hospital Gown Leads to a Man's Public Indecency Charge

Those fashionable hospital gowns doctors give out don't provide a lot of coverage so wearing one in public could give you reputation as a flasher.

Consider what happened to Ty Alsop on Saturday. He had a little too much to drink and was taken to the hospital after he was found passed out. Hospital staff admitted him and gave him a cute paper outfit to wear. He wasn't satisfied with the service so he made a break for it.

But when he wandered into the hospital parking lot, staff, patients, and visitors got an eyeful of Alsop. Then he got arrested.

Three Delaware women were charged with operating a toddler fight club at the daycare center where they worked. [The first rule of toddler fight club is do not talk about toddler fight club.]

If you're wondering what a toddler fight club is, it's exactly what it sounds like. The three women are accused of throwing two- and three-year-olds into an arena where the toddlers were told to duke it out, reports CBS.

The police have video of the alleged daycare fight club and the three women are now facing a variety of criminal charges. [The second rule of toddler fight club is do not take cell phone video of toddler fight club.]

Health-conscious Californians have railed against perceived radiation risks from cell phones and wireless utility meters. Now Santa Monica's new wireless parking meters are being challenged in a woman's $1.7 billion claim.

The new meters are sometimes called "smart" parking meters, because they can detect when a vehicle leaves its spot. The meter then zeroes-out the balance of that car's remaining time, the Santa Monica Daily Press reports.

But the meters' wireless technology is making one woman sick -- literally, according to her claim, which could potentially lead to a lawsuit.

Thurman Nesbitt III is likely seeing red after police arrested his girlfriend, the mother of his child, for allegedly poisoning him with Visine eye drops.

But Vickie Jo Mills, 33, of Ayr Twp., Pa., "never meant to kill" Nesbitt, 45, a police affidavit states, according to ABC News. Instead, she "only wanted him to pay more attention to her."

Now the mother is getting national media attention for her alleged poisoning, which took place in drips, literally, over more than three years, police say.

NYPD Drained Brooklyn Bar's Liquor Stock by Mistake, Owner Says

A liquor license mix-up with the NYPD has left David Kelleran out thousands of dollars in alcohol, according to a complaint he filed in federal court.

Last year, the bar owner sent a check to the New York State Liquor Authority to cover the liquor license at his bar, '68.' The check bounced and he was told to pay it within 10 days or lose his liquor license.

Five days later, cops showed up at his other establishment, 'Coco 66,' and shut it down for operating without a liquor license. Then they did something that was questionably legal.

Portland Man Travels to Seattle to Confront Alleged Bike Thief

If you've ever wanted to confront a thief for something that's been stolen, say a bicycle, this one's for you.

Jake Gillum's bike was stolen from him at the beginning of August. But a few days after it happened, he found his bike listed on Craigslist in Seattle. He lives in Portland.

So Gillum and some friends contacted the seller and ambushed him at a shopping mall in Seattle. He got back his bike, the alleged thief was arrested, and he caught it all on camera.

To people who say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, they obviously have never known a man whose bike was stolen.

A pair of Texas fighters foiled an attempted MMA gym burglary, and they really didn't even have to lift a finger.

The badly timed break-in took place about 3 a.m., when two mixed martial arts fighters had just wrapped up a late-night training session, San Antonio's KSAT-TV reports.

"We're just kind of sitting down, drinking water, ... and we start to hear pounding on this door," one of the fighters told KSAT.

A sea of lies has likely sunk the career of Navy Cmdr. Michael Ward II, who allegedly faked his own death to get out of an extramarital affair.

The woman he allegedly lied to says that's conduct unbecoming an officer. "He does not need to be commanding a submarine," the woman told The Day of New London, Conn. "He's a deceitful man."

Ward, 43, of Gales Ferry, Conn., was named commander of the attack submarine USS Pittsburgh last October. A week later, he allegedly dove into a relationship with a woman 20 years younger on a dating website.

Jury Shown Video of TX Teacher's Group Sex with Students

Brittani Colleps first day on trial took an exciting turn when the jury was instructed to watch a video of Colleps allegedly having sex with several students. Sadly for the courtroom observers, the video was only shown to the jury.

Puts a whole new twist on jury duty being a drag, doesn't it?

Colleps is a former Texas high school teacher who stands accused of having sex with some of her students. The sex video the jury saw allegedly shows her engaging in group sex with four students.

Ick-factor aside, all the students were over 18 at the time. So why is she in so much legal trouble?

Top 5 Strangest Vehicles People Have Driven Drunk

When people talk about drunk driving the vehicle they're generally picturing is a car. But here at FindLaw we know that DUI is an equal-opportunity offense.

You can get a DUI for driving pretty much anything that can cause harm to others. It doesn't even need a motor.

In honor of all the pioneers who have tested DUI laws across this great country, it's time for a swerving and potentially hazardous trip down memory lane. Here the top five alternative vehicles that got busted for DUI.

Jailer Sent Facebook Friend Request to Inmate, Gets Fired

Friending people on Facebook is a good way to stay in touch but it's not always a good idea to friend everyone you know. Say you work as a jailer and you friend a cute female inmate; that will probably end with you fired.

How do we know this? It happened to Dewayne Powers, a Georgia jail deputy.

Powers wasn't the only jailer who got in trouble for friending the 23-year-old inmate, reports NBC News. Andrea Rogers resigned after a hearing where he was asked about his contact with the young woman.

Spoiler alert: A jailer flirting with inmates is not an approved activity.

Is it a legitimate lawsuit or just revenge? Leila Tarantino of Florida claims a traffic stop got way too personal when deputies allegedly strip-searched her and then removed her tampon by force.

But the sheriff's office in Citrus County, Fla., insists the strip search never happened, Tampa's WFTS-TV reports.

Here's what's not disputed: Tarantino was driving in Beverly Hills, Fla., in June 2011, when a sheriff's deputy pulled her over.

Here's what's being disputed: Everything else.

Walmart Groper Grabbed Woman Because 'Her Booty Looked So Good'

If you're going to grope someone's derriere in Walmart it's best to have an alibi ready. Something like 'that's my significant other and they consented' or 'I didn't do anything' would be helpful.

'Her booty looked so good' is not going to help with the sexual harassment charges.

Aaron Morris already tried that defense when he was arrested for misdemeanor battery. It didn't garner much sympathy.

Empanadas Con Cocaine: Baggage Handlers Smuggled Drugs in Treats

If you're looking for a side of cocaine with your empanada, you should have asked Jorge Guerrero about it last week because now he's been arrested.

Guererro was busted on Tuesday for his role as the ringleader of a drug trafficking ring bringing illegal narcotics into the U.S. from Ecuador. Homeland Security agents have been following the New York lost luggage handler for six-months and intercepted 11 lbs of heroin and cocaine being illegally smuggled into the country.

Empanadas weren't the only vehicle the smuggling ring used. They also hid drugs inside some sweet treats.

If nudity and Crisco cooking spray sound like your idea of a party, consider giving Chad William Forber a call.

Police say Forber, 41, of Blue Grass, Iowa, sprayed himself with Crisco last week and then pranced around naked in downtown Rock Island, Ill., in the middle of the night.

"He said he was looking for a place to party," Rock Island's police chief told The Quad City Times.

No surprise, Forber was also allegedly caught with drugs in his possession. But with no clothes on, where could he possibly have hidden the contraband?

It's always nice to see neighbors helping neighbors. But a California man's idea of a neighborhood watch somehow ended with him naked in his female neighbor's bed, police say.

Cops arrested Konstantin Khazin, 25, a native of Ukraine who lives in San Diego, after his neighbor called police about 1 a.m., San Diego's KNSD-TV reports.

Khazin's neighbor apparently returned home late, to the unexpected sight of Khazin naked in her bed. She ran out of the apartment and called police.

But in a strange twist, Khazin allegedly told police his in-the-buff bed-sitting was actually meant to prevent crime.

Lawn Mower DUI: FL Man Caught Drunk on Lawn Equipment

The 'driving' aspect of a DUI applies to any vehicle, including a lawn mower. Maybe you didn't need the clarification but it appears James David Gray could have used it on Tuesday.

Gray was on his way home from mowing lawns when he stopped into a convenience store and bought his first beer in two years. Actually his first 18 beers in two years.

His choice? Natural Light.

Several hours later, Gray was stopped by police after he was seen driving south in the northbound lane. That was the first thing that tipped off police but it wasn't the only one.

A New York woman, Shirley Draper, was charged with criminal mischief for tearing down a picture of fake testicles from her neighbor's property.

You may be wondering just why Draper's neighbors had a picture of fake testicles on their property in the first place. Well, that's because Draper first hung a pair of fake testicles in her backyard just where the neighbors could see them in an apparent to annoy them.

The annoyance tactic worked and the neighbors tried to settle the dispute legally. However, unable to find a legal remedy, the neighbors put up the picture so that Draper would get a taste of her own medicine -- seeing a pair of testicles every time she looked out her window.

Woman Faked Labor to Avoid Shoplifting Arrest, Cops Say

An Ohio woman who faked labor complications to escape the cops sure had a creative way to resist arrest. But not only was it unsuccessful, she got in more trouble for doing it.

Police tracked down Tamala Grissett after she was accused of stealing almost $1,300 from a local Macy's. When they arrived at her home she gave a fake ID, then threatened to kill one of the officer's and file a false abuse complaint.

When that didn't work, she told the officers she was in pain and having pregnancy complications.

Turns out, she might not even be pregnant, according to the Huffington Post.

Beer and DUI checkpoints don't mix, especially if you happen to be tossing back a brewski while behind the wheel.

David Caruso learned that the hard way over the weekend. No, not the famous David Caruso of CSI and NYPD Blue fame. This David Caruso, 51, of Coventry, Conn., had his license suspended for a prior drunken driving arrest, The Hartford Courant reports.

But that apparently didn't stop Caruso from hopping into a car and allegedly doing something quite stupid.

Topless Woman Led Cops on a Chase Because She Was Topless

Cops have heard most excuses for speeding but Mandy Ramsey of Fort McCoy, Florida may have a new one. She couldn't stop because she was topless.

At least it's original.

To be fair, Ramsey wasn't speeding because she was topless. But she did allegedly lead police on a car chase because she wasn't wearing a shirt.

Somehow we don't think that will help with the charges against her.

Urologist Took Video Up Women's Skirts on NYC Subway, Cops Say

Urologist Adam Levinson is so into his job that he was caught by police 'examining' a woman who was not his patient using an upskirt camera.

But enthusiasm or no, putting a secret camera under a woman's skirt and pressing record is a no-no. Levinson's alleged actions have earned him a felony charge for second-degree unlawful surveillance.

He might have thought he was being smooth but Levinson was caught because someone saw what he was doing.

How better to mark the dog days of summer than with a look back at nitwits and ne'er-do-wells whose actions landed them in the dog house?

A mid-year roundup of our most popular Legally Weird blog posts so far in 2012 includes fraternity brothers, ghosts, suspected drug use, and the need to relieve oneself. In short, something for everyone.

Here, in reverse order, are our Top 5 stories so far this year:

PA Man Busted for Oral Sex on Sleeping Guys

Waking up to oral sex may be a pleasant surprise for most sleeping guys. But then again, it depends on who is giving the oral sex, right gentleman?

In Pennsylvania, a Harrisburg DJ allegedly would prowl the bar scene and target unsuspecting sleeping guys to give oral sex to.

The DJ, Dajuan Porter, was recently arrested and charged with sexual assault on three men. Porter was apparently notorious in that club scene for assaulting men as they slept and police are urging more victims to step forward, reports CBS 21.

TX Woman Assaults Boyfriend with Stripper Pole, Oil, Cops Say

Consider using a stripper pole next time you need to assault someone and nothing else is handy.

Actually no, scratch that, pink stripper poles should not be used for evil.

But when she ran out of other weapons that's what Sarah Howell of Killeen, Texas allegedly used to beat her boyfriend on Sunday. Turns out assaulting someone with a stripper pole will still get you arrested.

If, like Howell, you've been prosecuted for domestic abuse previously that can mean a larger potential punishment.

Snickers Bars Stuffed with Meth, not Peanuts, Caught at LAX

Snickers are known for being full of peanuts and nougat, but Rogelio Mauricio Harris of Long Beach, California thought the recipe could use a kick, so he filled his snickers bars with meth.

Harris was on his way to Japan when customs agents searched his bag during a routine baggage inspection.

The agents first noticed that Harris had a large box of Snickers in his bag. But upon closer inspection those bars were reportedly lacking the signature combination of nougat, caramel, and peanuts.

Turns out you pack a lot of meth into a box of what looks like candy bars.

Walmart Sex Show: Kan. Couple Stole Lube for In-Store Sex Act

Public displays of affection can be sickening in most situations, but a Kansas couple may have taken it to an extreme when they were arrested for putting on a Walmart sex show.

The Kansas couple was reportedly so enamored with each other that they just had to get it on in the middle of the Walmart. Right in front of other customers, 22-year-old Julian Call and 35-year-old Tina Gianakon allegedly began "sexually fondling" each other, reports the New York Daily News.

Couple High on Bath Salts Break into Neighbor's House with Guns, Knives

A North Carolina couple high on bath salts were arrested for breaking into their neighbor's home on Tuesday. They allegedly believed someone was after them and armed themselves with guns and knives.

Then they ran to Richard and Debra Robinson's home nearby and forced their way in.

It doesn't seem that they stopped to consider whether they were the people to avoid, not the ones being chased.

The arresting officer had them committed but they have since been released to jail.

NY Man Groped Passenger While He Slept

New York City resident Othniel Polanco was recently arrested for groping his seatmate on a JetBlue flight to JFK.

The unfortunate victim was asleep at the time but when the 18-year-old victim woke up and discovered the alleged groper, he punched Polanco in the face.

Polanco, age 29, originally said that he was asleep and didn't realize where his hand was. Because, you know, sometimes when you're asleep your hand ends up in another person's pants. Happens all the time, right?

He later recanted that statement and submitted a new defense.

CA Student Sues Teacher, District Over C+ in Chemistry

A high school student in California is suing his teacher claiming that she unfairly gave him a C+ instead of the A+ he said he justly deserved.

Bowen Bethards says that he carried a 106 percent in Ms. Peggy Carlock's chemistry class, but was forced to miss a lab due to an adoption hearing for his little sister. Not given a chance to redo the lab, Bethards saw his mark go from a A+ to a C+.

As a result of the average grade, the 17-year-old Bethards now says he suffers from severe physical and emotional distress, damage to his academic reputation, and diminished chances of getting into his college of choice, reports ABC.

A Florida man who lost his left hand in an alligator attack has been charged with illegally feeding the gator. Talk about adding insult to injury.

Wallace Weatherholt, a 63-year-old airboat captain, was giving an Indiana family a tour of the Everglades when he was attacked. Weatherholt allegedly tried to get a nine-foot gator to surface by feeding it and patting the water. The tactic worked too well, and Weatherholt lost his hand.

Weatherholt now faces second degree misdemeanor charges for the unlawful feeding of the alligator. If he is convicted, the airboat captain could go to jail for 60 days and pay a $500 fine, reports the Naples Daily News. As if losing his hand was not punishment enough.

There she is, Miss Nevada 2007. And here's her lawsuit: Caleche Ranae Manos alleges sheriff's deputies busted the wrong apartment and ogled her naked body as they forced her out of bed.

The mistaken ex-beauty queen bust took place in November 2011 in her Los Angeles County apartment, KTLA-TV reports. Manos was asleep in bed with her fiance when armed deputies barged into her unit, clearly labeled apartment "A."

Unfortunately, the deputies' search warrant was for apartment "C."