PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) — Florida authorities say they responded to a rogue vehicle spinning in reverse around a suburban cul-de-sac with a lone occupant inside: a Black Labrador.
News outlets report residents called police Thursday after seeing the dog trapped and clambering around in the car as it spun in circles in a Port St. Lucie neighborhood.
Police say they think the dog’s owner stepped away from the running car and that’s when the pet knocked it into reverse. Neighbor Anne Sabol says she watched the furry speed racer take out a mailbox and a trash can.
Sabol says the dog was in high spirits after being rescued, adding it “jumped out of the car, wagging his tail.”
Police stopped the joyride by punching a passcode into the driver’s door. No one was hurt.
Schools apologize over differing
events for boys, girls
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina school district is apologizing for the way boys and girls were treated differently at an event about leadership and character for elementary school students.
News outlets report that many boys at Pickens Elementary School dressed in collared shirts and ties and heard from male role models from the community at a recent event called a “summit.”
Girls, meanwhile, dressed in T-shirts and met with Pickens High School cheerleaders at a separate event called a “retreat.”
A backlash erupted on social media with critics complaining about the differing experiences for boys and girls. Some accused officials of sexism.
The district is now apologizing. A statement says the events weren’t meant to send a message that students should display traits or pursue goals based on their gender.
Police: Pregnant woman forced
to drink toilet water, bleach
ST. PETERS, Mo. (AP) — An eastern Missouri man is accused of holding his pregnant girlfriend captive, punching her and forcing her to drink toilet water and bleach.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that 40-year-old Ronnie William Howard of St. Peters is charged with kidnapping, domestic assault and unlawful use of a weapon. He is jailed on $300,000 cash-only bail.
Police say the assault took place Wednesday at the 20-year-old victim’s apartment in St. Peters. She made a video call to a relative about the crime. The relative called the woman’s mother, who called police.
A police probable cause statement says Howard has convictions in another state for kidnapping, assault by strangulation, assault with a firearm and stealing a motor vehicle. He does not have a listed attorney.
St. Louis woman incriminated by
diary sentenced to prison
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Louis woman whose diary entry detailed dumping a body along a highway has been sentenced to two years in prison.
A judge on Friday sentenced 39-year-old Joni Janis. She pleaded guilty in September to abandonment of a corpse and a drug charge.
Authorities say 26-year-old Kierstin Whitcher of Waterloo, Illinois, died in 2017 of a diabetes complication. Police found Janis’ diary in which she wrote that a male tenant of an apartment in her home left behind the woman, saying she was in a coma.
Janis explained in her diary that when she realized the woman was dead, she put the body in a car, which was left alongside the highway with the woman inside.
Her husband, Timothy Janis, was sentenced previously to two years in prison.
Medical examiner’s macabre
humor leads to complaint
BANGOR, Maine (AP) — A state lawmaker is taking exception to the macabre humor that Maine’s chief medical examiner used in an old job posting.
The 2017 posting for a deputy medical examiner touted Maine’s benefits like a “really short season for decomposing bodies” and the fact that others are “lost at sea.”
The Bangor Daily News reports that state Rep. Jeff Evangelos, of Friendship, complained about the job posting to Attorney General Aaron Frey. Evangelos said it was “beyond sick.”
Attorney: Teen charged in 90
mph crash to plead insanity
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The attorney for a Louisiana teenager who told authorities God instructed him to end his life, so he crashed his car into another driver says his client intends to plead not guilty by reason of insanity.
The Advocate reports 18-year-old Jack Jordan was indicted this month on a second-degree murder charge in the fiery, 90 mph (145 kph) crash that killed 51-year-old Stephanie Payne.
Jordan was sent to a state mental hospital in August after he was deemed not competent to assist his attorneys.
Deer with snout stuck in
Halloween bucket is rescued
PUTNAM VALLEY, N.Y. (AP) — Animal control officers in New York came to the aid of a deer that had a plastic Halloween bucket stuck to its snout.
TV station WABC reports that that the yearling deer was spotted in Putnam Valley northeast of New York City with its snout in a pumpkin-shaped bucket.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation and Putnam Valley Animal Control made the rescue on Wednesday. Authorities say the bucket was stuck to the deer’s snout for four days.
The community nicknamed the animal Little Pumpkin.