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Creme de la Weird 

A weekly roundup of international news oddities

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Creme de la Weird
An arrest warrant was issued July 8 in Little Rock, Arkansas, for Brian Dale Reams, 32, in connection with several incidents where he allegedly approached women and asked if he could touch their feet—with a curious twist, KATV reported. In Conway, Arkansas, a woman said a man with no arms followed her into a Walmart last September, telling her she had pretty feet and asking if she liked having people touch them. Later, he began harassing her on Facebook. In June, a second woman said a man matching the same description (but wearing a face mask with "Brian" written on it) followed her around the same Walmart and wondered if she'd let him give her a foot massage. He apparently didn't explain how that might work. A third woman identified Reams after viewing screenshots of his Facebook account; he approached her in a Kroger store.

Awesome!
Delray Beach, Florida, has a new addition to its fleet of police vehicles: an ice cream truck. Police Chief Javaro Sims told WPBF-TV that he's been thinking about getting an ice cream truck for some time. "We must continue to find ways to break down those invisible barriers we continue to deal with on a daily basis within our communities," Sims said. He hopes the public will grab some free ice cream and stay for some conversation, getting to know the officers and building relationships.

Bright Ideas
California Highway Patrol officers were called to a spot on I-80 near the Nevada border on July 15 because of a car on fire, SFGate reported. When they got there, they discovered a man yelling about "the bears," Officer Carlos Perez said. After talking with him, they determined that the man had set his car on fire to ward off bears. "Listen, we have bears in the area," Perez said, "but there were no bears nearby. ... You can't light a fire on the hood of your vehicle to 'keep the bears away.'"

• Jimmy Jennings of Lafayette, Louisiana, doesn't like being stuck in traffic. But on July 9, as he sat in a jam on the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge, he was struck with a dubious notion: He would jump off the interstate bridge into the river below. "When I hit the water, my shoulder went up, I kind of hurt my shoulder, but I started swimming," Jennings said, according to WABC-TV. "I couldn't get back to the bank because the current was way too strong. I thought I was going to die, but God saved me." Eventually, Jennings found his way to land, where he rode around on an ATV for a while—only to discover he was on an island. Finally, he found a boat and was met by police, who charged him with criminal mischief and trespassing. Jennings later admitted on Facebook that his leap of faith was a bad idea.

But Why?
A Reno, Nevada, woman was charged on July 14 in a break-in incident at a dental practice where she worked, the New York Daily News reported. Laurel Eich allegedly broke into the practice in May and stole $23,000 worth of checks and cash. In the course of the investigation, Eich also admitted to extracting 13 teeth from a sedated patient after using anesthetic discarded by the practice—even though she is not licensed to perform such procedures. Eich was charged with multiple felonies, including performing surgery on another without a license.

Smooth Reaction
When Fort Worth, Texas, code compliance officers arrived at a home at around 8:30 a.m. on July 16 to issue a violation for too-high grass, the homeowner did not answer the door. But when mowers hired by the city showed up and started cutting the grass, the person inside began shooting at them, KDFW-TV reported. The police officers who had accompanied the compliance team took cover and waited for backup; the person inside continued shooting until SWAT units arrived and shot tear gas into the home. The shooter was taken into custody at about 1 p.m.; the citation was his seventh in two years. "Being shot at for trying to make the community look better?" said Fort Worth officer Jimmy Pollozani. "That just proves the dangers of this job." The man was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Say What?
The Guardian reported on July 19 about a phenomenon among American preschoolers called the Peppa Effect. The hypothesis is that children who watched a lot of Peppa Pig during the pandemic lockdown have developed British accents and started using British terms like "mummy" (mommy), "give it a go" (try it) and "satnav" (GPS). Wall Street Journal reporter Preetika Rana tweeted that her niece "had an American accent before the pandemic. Now she has a posh English accent." One responder agreed: "And for Christmas I had to put out a freaking mince pie for Father Christmas, or, as we call him here in the States, Santa Claus."

Least Competent Criminal
Robert Perez, 53, was pulled over in Iowa City, Iowa, on July 15 for erratically driving a stolen Kawasaki motorcycle, The Smoking Gun reported. He told police that he had borrowed the bike from "a fellow meth user," but he couldn't provide the name or address of that friend. Perez admitted that he had injected meth five hours earlier; while in police custody, he was caught Googling "how long meth stays in your system after initial consumption," Officer Daniel Boesen said. Investigators obtained a blood sample from Perez and sent it to the crime lab; he was booked for theft, DUI and driving with a suspended license.

Questionable Judgment
An unnamed 31-year-old woman in Beachwood, Ohio, went on a spectacular joyride on June 15, crashing into another car at more than 100 mph before spinning into a utility pole, another car and a house, WJW reported. Surprisingly, no one was hurt in the series of crashes, including the driver and her 11-year-old daughter, who was sitting in the front seat with her. Officers didn't detect any evidence of drug or alcohol use. Instead, the driver told police that she's been going through some "trials and tribulations" and was recently fired from her job, so she "let go and let God take the wheel." She went on to say that she believed she had done the right thing. She now faces charges of felony assault, endangering a child and driving under suspension.

Florida
Parents of students who attend Sallie Jones Elementary School in Punta Gorda, Florida, are considering taking matters into their own hands after police have failed to stop a man from standing outside the school, waving swastika flags and screaming profanities as they pick up and drop off their kids. "I think it's inappropriate, and I want to put an end to it," said parent Adam Ackerman. WINK News reported that Punta Gorda police can't arrest the man because he hasn't broken the law; a city ordinance prohibits signs with obscene language or symbols, but apparently swastikas aren't considered obscene by law. "I think the people that can get it done

Police Report
On July 18, at an LDS church in St. George, Utah, Jeremy David Miller, 40, stripped off his underwear in the parking lot and, while nude, removed items from the trunk of his car and scattered them on the church lawn, ABC4-TV reported. Next, Miller went inside and slammed a child's car seat onto a table, knocking the sacrament tray and water to the ground. He then sped off in his Jeep; officers found him at his home, where he came outside "shouting and cursing" at them. Miller continued to resist officers until handcuffs were applied; he faces multiple charges including lewdness and assault against a police officer.

Send your weird news items to WeirdNewsTips@amuniversal.com.

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