1. Archive


Can't have or hold

A 43-year-old woman in Miyazaki, Japan, faces charges of killing her husband. Well, he wasn't really her husband. And she didn't really kill him. Apparently, the woman was "married" to the man in an online role-playing game, but he "divorced" her without warning. So she signed on using his ID and "killed" him. She has been detained, but not charged with anything yet, though police are considering charges of illegal manipulation of electronic data. She could face five years in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.

FDIC insured

Mouse-eaten cash may be refunded

A man in southeastern Missouri had a bag with about $1,000 in it last winter, but he lost track of it during an ice storm, then subsequent flooding. In the meantime, a bunch of mice found it and started chewing on it. When he found the bag, it was full of a bunch of pieces of money, and other rodent-associated material that you would rather not read about. He took the bag to the bank, where staffers started reassembling what was left. "With that mess, I didn't know if we could do anything with it," said Michelle Johns of First Missouri State Bank in Jackson. The mint says that as long as two complete sets of serial numbers can be found, it will reimburse.

Real estate

Home is nice, but access is an issue

Ashley Parsons of Somerset, U.K., found a deal on a place he intended to make his first home. It is a 150-foot-tall, medieval-style tower that he got at auction for about $55,000. The problem: It is surrounded on all sides by land owned by a company that really doesn't want the tower redeveloped as a home. So it isn't allowing him access. "The only way I can access my home legally would be by jumping from a helicopter on to the roof," Parsons, 20, told the Daily Mirror. "It's a pathetic decision, but they won't stop me."

To protect and serve

Top cop stopped

Terry Cozad was the police officer of the year in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Likely he won't be defending the title next year, though. On Sunday night he was arrested on a charge of drunken driving.


No penalty

Edna Jester, 89-year-old grandmother in Blue Ash, Ohio, will not face charges involving the football that was in her yard that she kept. She had been arrested on a theft charge for keeping the ball that had been lost by some neighborhood kids. She says she plans to keep it with the other toys that have landed in her yard, all from the same family. That makes the block party kind of awkward.

Compiled from Times wire services and other sources by staff writer Jim Webster, who can be reached at


"(ACORN) should have picked a more ominous name, like KAOS or SPECTRE, instead of squirrel food. Something really scary. They are the biggest nut-based threat to America since Mr. Peanut tried to assassinate the GOP elephant to impress the Morton Salt girl."

Stephen Colbert, host of The Colbert Report, on the voter registration group