Weekly Wire
Weekly Alibi Odds & Ends

By Devin D. O'Leary

MAY 24, 1999: 

Dateline: Mexico--Eerie and ironic or merely creepy and convenient? A young Mexican couple who sneaked into the back of a hearse to have sex died from carbon monoxide poisoning while sleeping off their irreverent activities last Saturday. Apparently José Austin Noh, an employee of the Perez Diaz funeral home in Campeche, Mexico, and his girlfriend, Ana Maria Camara, left the vehicle running in order to have air conditioning but were eventually overcome by the fumes. The bodies were found a day later by funeral home employees.

Dateline: California--Voters in celebrity-stocked Beverly Hills overwhelmingly rejected a measure to require labels on fur coats describing how the animals were killed--electrocuted, gassed, clubbed, poisoned, drowned or put to sleep painlessly. The measure saw several famed animal rights activists such as Jack Lemmon and Larry King challenging Beverly Hills' trendier boutiques. Nonetheless, voters rejected the proposal by 63.8 percent

Dateline: Arizona--A 23-year-old fugitive from the law made things awfully convenient for police when he handcuffed himself and then called the local constabulary for help. Phoenix waiter Sean Barry was playing around with a pair of handcuffs when he shackled himself in and realized that he did not have the keys. Instead of calling a locksmith, Barry phoned the police. After performing a routine computer check, officers discovered that Barry had an outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court for driving on a suspended license. Police left the handcuffs on and hauled Barry to jail.

Dateline: Indiana--A last minute decision by a federal judge has allowed an Indiana teen to attend his high school prom in drag. Arlington High School administrators had tried to prevent Dale Stewart from attending the dance in a black formal dress because they said it violated the school's dress code. A federal judge in Indianapolis, however, ruled that Stewart's decision to wear a dress was a protected form of speech.

Dateline: Wisconsin--Phil Montgomery, a state representative from Ashwaubenon, Wis., has vowed to reform his state's draconian ice cream laws. Wisconsin is one of only two states, along with Hawai'i, with laws that govern the size of ice cream containers. In America's Dairyland, ice cream can only be sold in half-pints, pints, quarts and multiples of quarts. The nation's largest ice cream producer, Good Humor-Breyers, sells a "Pints Plus" container which gifts consumers with just over a pint of dessert. The Good Humor-Breyers confection is currently illegal in Wisconsin. State officials aren't sure why the 34-year-old ice cream container law was enacted in the first place.

Dateline: Pennsylvania--This May's Democratic primary for Allegheny County Commissioner turned inadvertently ugly last week when incumbent Mike Dawida aired his first television ads. Dawida's television commercial featured a woman's voice saying, "The public record doesn't lie." The slogan was then printed on the screen over a picture of Dawida's opponent, County Coroner Cyril Wecht. Unfortunately, a crucial consonant was missing in the printed version of Dawida's campaign slogan. Without the letter "l," the printed slogan became, "The pubic record does not lie." Sheinkopf Communications of New York City, which created the ad, has corrected the typo.

Dateline: Michigan--Seventy-year-old William Cope, Jr. has been arrested and faces "serious child-sex charges" in Wayne County, Mich., after being nabbed in an Internet sting operation. Cope drove 12 hours to a secret rendezvous with a 14-year-old girl he met on-line. The "girl" was in fact a group of police deputies who met up with Cope two months ago in a computer chat room. At the time of his arrest, Cope was packing a gun, a bottle of Viagra and a Beanie Baby. Wayne County's "cyber cops" have been patrolling the Internet for over six months, but Cope is the oldest of the half-dozen suspects arrested so far.

--compiled by Devin D. O'Leary

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