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Inexplicable 

A weekly roundup of international news oddities

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Inexplicable
Metro News reported on Aug. 15 that authorities in the village of Wonersh in Surrey, England, are stumped by a serial baked bean bandit who is pouring the savory legumes on doorsteps, cars and into mail slots. Officers have promised to step up patrols in the area, but residents are seeing the lighter side: "What half-baked idiots would do this? I hope they get thrown in the can!" and "Absolutely Heinzous crime."

Repeat Offender
A Davenport, Iowa, man was arrested on Aug. 12 after nonchalantly entering a home and rummaging for children's dirty underwear, then sitting down next to a juvenile on the couch. The Quad-City Times reported that Brock Joseph Beert, 30, was led out the back door and waited for police while sitting on a fence. Beert was charged with second-degree burglary and will face the court for those charges after a sentencing hearing on Aug. 19 for another burglary earlier this year.

Fine Points of the Law
Paul Flores, 44, of San Pedro, California, is facing the court for the 1996 disappearance and murder of Kristin Smart, Yahoo News reported. On Aug. 11, Bob Sanger, Flores' attorney, filed a motion requesting a hearing to recuse the entire district attorney's office. Sanger argued that prosecutors have a conflict of interest because they've been wearing purple clothing during the hearing, which was Smart's favorite color. He also said the victim witness coordinator has been sending a "prejudicial message" to witnesses that the DA's office is on Smart's side. Specifically, Sanger said, Detective Clint Cole had worn a purple tie every day of the hearing. Sanger's motion will be heard on Aug. 25.

Bright Idea
New York City subway motorman Terrell Harris is in trouble with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority after letting his girlfriend take a train for a joyride on Aug. 13. According to NBC New York, the couple posted photos to social media showing them in the cab, with her operating the controls through several stops. Interim NYC Transit President Craig Cipriano called the incident an "egregious violation of public trust. Something that I haven't seen in my 32 years here." Harris has been "taken out of service."

Puppy Le Pew
A Nylabone dog treat plant in Neptune City, New Jersey, has neighbors holding their noses after the company consolidated its manufacturing at the site recently. "It's nauseating," Linda Williamson, who lives nearby, told NBC New York. "Instant headaches." Nylabone President Glen Axelrod said the company has spent more than $2 million on odor abatement, charcoal filters and other fixes. "If it were a bakery, you'd be smelling baked food; if we were a steakhouse, you'd be smelling steak," he said. But ... it's not. "You can't enjoy your own yard in this beautiful neighborhood," complained Linda Colucci. While neighbors consult with lawyers about their next moves, Axelrod said the company will continue to explore solutions to the noxious odors.

Rubbish
• In Bathside, Harwich, England, resident Irene Slater, 59, has been "gobsmacked" by the theft of garbage bags from outside her home -- four times! She keeps the full bags outside because of the smell, but someone obviously appreciates the bouquet, according to the Harwich and Manningtree Standard, sneaking up in the dark of night to take them away. Slater and her neighbors are concerned that the thieves are looking to steal their identities. "It's just so strange -- why would you steal a bin bag?" Slater asked. "It's certainly not as bad as being burgled, but it still makes you think."

• Freddie Gillium-Webb, 29, from Hampshire, England, was tasked in August with a cleaning job he won't soon forget, the Daily Mail reported. After a tenant was removed for not paying rent, Gillium-Webb went in to clean the apartment and found a pile of approximately 8,000 beer cans several feet deep, but that wasn't the worst of it. "The smell was terrible. The kitchen was full of food waste and in the living room there were half-eaten kebabs and moldy loaves of bread all over the floor," Gillium-Webb said. "The toilet was piled high with toilet paper and feces, it was disgusting. He'd never flushed it by the looks of it." He said he vomited three times during the cleanup and used 100 large trash bags and 10 bottles of bleach. Still, Gillium-Webb was empathetic: "The tenant might have had depression and he probably had a drinking problem, based on the amount of cans. You need help sometimes, but you can't live like that."

That Was Fast
Steven James Jordan, 31, launched a Twitter account on Aug. 8 and tweeted 186 times within three hours. His account was suspended on Aug. 9, and by Aug. 12, Law & Crime reported, Jordan was booked into the Pinellas County (Florida) jail for threatening tweets. Sheriff's spokesperson Deputy Amanda Sinni said Jordan targeted Activision Games in reference to video games and said he was going to blow up Disney executives' homes, even tagging the company in the tweets. Jordan admitted to writing the tweets but said he posted "stupid things" and didn't want to be arrested. He has a previous conviction for threatening to open fire at a Masonic lodge in Clearwater, Florida.

Suspicions Confirmed
In January, Demetra Street of Baltimore attended a memorial service for her husband, Ivan, complete with a photo of him next to an urn at the front of the room at Wylie Funeral Homes. But after the service, funeral home personnel whisked the urn away and wouldn't turn over Ivan's ashes, she told The Washington Post. Now she thinks she knows why: Ivan's ashes weren't in the urn. Instead, his body had been buried three days earlier, according to the wishes of another woman who claimed to be Ivan's wife, at Baltimore's Mount Zion cemetery. In early August, Street filed a lawsuit against the funeral home for $8.5 million, calling the urn displayed at the memorial service a "sham." The funeral home's president, Brandon Wylie, denies the accusation: "We vehemently deny the claims advanced by Ms. Street and assert that the underlying matter was handled with the utmost sensitivity toward the loved ones of the deceased."

Awesome!
In July, customers at Tesco supermarkets in England were greeted with motivational posters encouraging camaraderie during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Daily Record reported. However, some patrons were amused by the placement of the messages -- especially one reading "Together we can do this" found in a urinal stall in the men's restroom. Users posted the sign online, prompting replies such as, "Nah I got this one all by myself thanks Tesco" and "Ok, but only three shakes please."

News That Sounds Like a Joke
Dan Ball, a host on One America News, interviewed Amelia Miller on Aug. 12 about her newfound power: She claims she became magnetic after getting the Pfizer vaccine in December 2020. According to HuffPost, Miller said she recently started "to feel this extremely strong metallic taste in my mouth" and remembered stories about people who had become magnetic after being vaccinated. "I thought all these videos were hoaxes, people are doing it, like you said, for social media fame," Miller told Ball. But then she tried sticking metal objects to her skin, and they stayed, and the metallic taste came back. When she tried to demonstrate during the interview, one metal object stuck, while another fell off. "I'm speechless. I'm just going to end the interview right there," Ball responded.

Send your weird news items to WeirdNewsTips@amuniversal.com

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