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Dispatches Quick Takes

Quick Takes

(Karen Xia/NY Daily News via Getty Images)

That car is history

For some it was a landmark. For some it was an eyesore. But finally the 1971 Cadillac parked on a Brooklyn, N.Y., side street for decades has been towed. Residents of the Windsor Park neighborhood expressed shock to the New York Daily News when they learned the car had been towed. After all, the rusted vehicle hadn’t moved since 1994 and appeared packed to its ceiling with coffee cups, old newspapers, and other trash. A street cleaner finally ticketed the car in July, and authorities towed it to the Erie Basin Auto Pound.


 

CBS Chicago

CBS Chicago

Her favorite numbers

A lot of babies were born on July 11, and a small number of them would have been born at either 7:11 a.m. or 7:11 p.m. But how many were born on July 11 at 7:11 p.m. and weighed seven pounds, 11 ounces? At least one girl was, J’Aime Brown, born to Rachel Langford in St. Louis. Upon hearing the news, the convenience chain 7-Eleven pledged $7,111 to J’Aime’s college fund.

 


 

Krieg Barrie

Krieg Barrie

Glowing report

Most traffic stops don’t require police to call in a private company, but a lot was new for Guthrie, Okla., police when they pulled over Stephen Jennings and a passenger on June 26 after noticing they had an expired tag. The open container of Kentucky Deluxe and the unregistered firearm would have been bad enough, but police also found a rattlesnake in the backseat. Learning the car had been stolen, the officers searched a bit harder. That’s when they allegedly turned up a canister of powdered uranium. Both driver and passenger were taken into custody, and police had to call a private company to safely retrieve the radioactive canister from the car. Authorities say they don’t know why the couple was transporting the radioactive material.


 

CloseCallSports screen capture

CloseCallSports screen capture

Off pitch?

Just one week into the “robot umpire” era in baseball, an angry coach was ejected from a game for arguing balls and strikes in the first inning. The dispute occurred in the Atlantic League, an independent minor league that recently began using an automated system called TrackMan. The system uses cameras to determine balls from strikes. Former Cy Young Award winner and current High Point Rockers pitching coach Frank Viola disagreed with the judgment of the system and began shouting at the home plate umpire to overrule the robotic judgment. He was ejected from the game when he left the dugout. Viola’s wife, Kathy, confessed on Twitter that it “does not surprise me” that her husband was the first ejection of the TrackMan era.


 

Arwyn Roberts/Daily Post Wales/Newscom

Arwyn Roberts/Daily Post Wales/Newscom

A tall order

A Welsh town has pilfered the title of world’s steepest street from a New Zealand city after recognition from Guinness World Records. Local architectural historian Gwyn Headley led the campaign for recognition after his car slid down Fford Pen Llech street in Harlech, Wales, even after applying the parking brake. To win the record, residents of Harlech had to prove to Guinness that their street had a gradient greater than 35 degrees—that of the previous record holder in Dunedin, New Zealand. In July, Guinness verified that Fford Pen Llech had a gradient in excess of 37 degrees, good enough to be named steepest in the world.


 

iStock modified by World

iStock modified by World

Eating the profits

Zoo officials in Nigeria are blaming a gorilla for making off with a month’s worth of gate fees. According to police, the equivalent of $19,000 in Nigerian currency has gone missing from the Kano Zoological Garden. Zoo officials have said the animal ate the cash, including the revenue from the popular Eid-ul-Fitr festival in May. Perhaps skeptical, Kano state Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje ordered his anti-corruption commission to investigate the issue.

 


 

Handout

Handout

Postcard from the past

Something strange arrived in Kim Draper’s mailbox on July 8. It was a postcard sent to her address from Hong Kong featuring fishing boats but addressed to a couple she did not know. Deepening the mystery, the mail bore a 1993 Hong Kong postmark. The 26-year-old postcard includes a personal message about life in Hong Kong and is signed “Dad.” Postal officials can’t say why the letter took so long to arrive at the address. Draper said she plans to track down one of the addressees and make final delivery.


 

Johntez Brown

Johntez Brown

The walking dead

A Chicago resident made the entrance of a lifetime when he returned home from a trip just in time to interrupt his own memorial barbecue. A case of mistaken identity led the family of Alfonso Bennett to believe he had died when in reality he had merely been out of town. Using an old mug shot, police believed a severely injured and unconscious man they found in May was Bennett. Family members say they hesitated to confirm the identification, but that police pressured them into agreeing with their assessment. The man died soon thereafter, and while Bennett’s family and friends held a memorial barbecue ahead of the funeral, Bennett arrived to the shock of the guests. Authorities later identified the dead man as Elisha Brittman.


 

Krieg Barrie

Krieg Barrie

Give it back

To anyone who found bags of cash alongside a metro Atlanta interstate highway: Authorities would like to have them back. According to police, the door of an armored car transporting hundreds of thousands of dollars flew open while it drove on I-285 in Dunwoody, Ga., on July 9. About $175,000 in currency flew from the back of the truck and fluttered onto the shoulder. Motorists in the Atlanta suburb quickly began pulling over and scooping up cash. Authorities were only able to recover about $200 from the ground. About $2,600 of cash was turned in to the Dunwoody Police Department. A police spokesman said that motorists who picked up cash could turn it in at the police station without fear of charges.