07-31-2003: Safecrackers are a dying breed. Today's AOTD is one of the reasons why.
On July 28th, a burglar broke into a Perkins resturant in North Charlston. He knew where he was going - he headed straight for the safe, and began cutting a hole in it with a cutting torch.
Cue the Mission Impossible theme song.
Oh, never mind with the song - he burned the cash inside! According to the story in the Charleston Post and Courier, the would-be safecracker let the heat build up a little too much inside the 1/4 inch-thick steel safe. The cash went up in flames, or at least partially. On surveilance video, the burglar is seen scrambling from the kitchen with two buckets of water, trying to extinguish his loot.
Authorities are on the lookout for charred one, five, and ten-dollar bills. Stinkweasel staff is on the lookout for the man's name, so we can give him his Asshat Of The Day award good and proper.
07-30-2003: This potatohead has had an AOTD award coming for a while now...
Silvio Berlusconi is a powerful man in Italy. He is up to his ears in controversy, about anything from business deals to his temporary stint as president of the European Union.
Several times now, he's pushed legislation through that favors his business dealings, and in fact he's gotten laws instated that protect him from prosecution while he's in office. Nope, no abuse of power there...
Berlusconi's latest law takes the cake, though. You see, poor Silvio is afraid of spiders. So, he pushed a law through banning the import of spiders. According to the story from News.com.au: "We understand that the measure was dictated by the prime minister's fear of spiders."
OK, everyone keep an eye on this guy. Methinks he's just a little bit ... unbalanced.
07-29-2003: Well, if they're not going to do their damned jobs, why not just fire them?
Yep, those whacky Democrats in Texas are getting wanderlust again. Faced with actually having to do their jobs, eleven politicians from Texas' state legislature instead fled Austin and flew to Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The politicians are trying to avoid a redistricting plan presented by the Republicans. Since they are the minority within the legislature, they face a tough fight, if they're not just steamrollered over. But, what I want to know, is why they think running away like little screaming schoolgirls is going to make the problem go away?
Read the Houston Chronicle story. If you live in Texas, consider writing to your representative. You elected them. And they're not doing their jobs.
Hmmmmm, I don't really want to fix one of the UNIX machines at work today... I think I'll just run away! Hell, publicly elected officials in Texas can...
07-28-2003: Fox executives: bite my shiny metal ass!
I knew this was going to happen. Every damned time Fox gets a good show, they let it run for a while and then cancel it out of the blue. The only notable exception is the Simpsons, who, IMHO, are a few seasons too old.
In case you haven't figured out why my mouth is frothing, Fox cancelled Futurama. According to the AP story (since removed from AP's site), Matt Groening's Futurama enjoyed a solid four seasons on Fox. Dammit, they were good for another four. Bastards.
I know, I know, this is hardly the world ending, or a diagnosis of cancer, or California sliding off into the ocean... It's just a major pet peeve of mine when it comes to Fox - they're the only network with balls, but they make some pretty sucky decisions when it comes to their better shows.
For god's sake, cancel a few friggin' "reality shows", those are getting stoooooooopid.
Today's AOTD award goes to the weasel at Fox that cancelled my favorite Fox show.
07-25-2003: If you have a weak stomach, you'd best not read today's AOTD column.
Today, Stinkweasel takes you to Kansas City for arguably one of the worst cases of neglect of a living human being ever seen.
Quinilla Swartz, a 43-year-old woman, has been restricted to a wheelchair for the past ten years. Her husband, Robert, has taken care of her. Until recently, that is.
Paramedics were called to the Schwartz's home on Tuesday evening, after relatives were told by Robert that his wife was complaining about back pain. Her back pain could have something to do with the fact that she had been laying in the middle of the living room floor for days, if not weeks.
Quinilla had severe bedsores from laying on the carpet. Her sores were so severe, that bones were exposed, carpet fibers were embedded in her skin, and live maggots were found in her infections. And that's not all - dog feces was found on the floor, near to where she lay incapacitated.
According to the Kansas City Star's story, part of her rotting flesh actually peeled off and remained stuck to the carpet when she was taken away for treatment for biological infections.
I think we all know who the AOTD today is. And said asshat is being charged with felony second-degree elder abuse.
The AOTD will be back on Monday - I'm taking a trip this weekend.
07-24-2003: Sweet lord, let the stupidity end!
There are many people that believe they have found the diet that's "right for them." There are vegans and vegetarians, people that eat only red meat, and people that make fruit and vegetable smoothies all day. Nutritionists have long since extoled the virtues of a balanced diet, but some people are a bit more extreme.
Take, for example, today's asshats. Lamoy and Joseph Andressohn believe in a very strict raw-food diet, consisting almost completely of raw fruits, grains, and vegetables. Raw grains?
In fact, they believe in this diet completely - they're still following the diet in jail, where they sit awaiting trial for allowing their 5-month-old baby to die of malnutrition.
Little Woyah died from malnutrition, weighing less at the time of her death than at the time of her birth. Have I mentioned that they gave their children (including little Woyah) wheat grass enemas? Oh, and they had their two older children assist when they gave Woyah an enema, because according to the story in the Miami Herald, they thought the baby was .. wait for it .. toxic.
Todays AOTD award goes to the Andressohn parents. And perhaps, if the diet killed their 5-month-old baby, perhaps they should get off it as well?
And one final bit of hipocrasy - Joseph Andressohn smoked, and enjoyed steak dinners from time to time. And their little baby died of malnutrition.
07-23-2003: Can't let those waterproof shoes get wet...
Kids will be kids. There's just no getting around that - they're learning, and they're going to make poor decisions.
Some mistakes just seem to raise the bar on stupidity, however. Take, for example, this story from the United Kingdom's Sun newspaper. A group of teenagers get cut off from the shore by an incoming tide, and need to be rescued. Fine, that happens, get a boat and pluck them off the rocks. Except, of course, for today's asshat that didn't want to get his new designer Rockport shoes wet.
No, instead of getting his Rockports wet, he scrambled up the cliff face where rescue boats couldn't reach him. I'll take this opportunity to mention that the pair of shoes cost around 70 GBP, or approximately $112 according to today's conversion rate.
Have I mentioned that Rockport shoes are known for being waterproof?
So, the lad had to be airlifted by a Sea King rescue helicopter, so his waterproof shoes wouldn't get wet. The Sun reports that this rescue cost around 25,000 GBP (approximately 40,113 USD).
07-22-2003: And in other news, the American judicial system goes horribly, horribly wrong...
Mark Lewis Brooks is a convicted murderer, doing time in the state of New York. He was convicted of killing 20-year-old Dean Lockshiss back in 1989. He is serving 20 years to life.
He is also calling himself Jessica Maria Lewis, and wants the state of New York to pay for his sex change operation.
And today's Asshat Of The Day, US District Judge Lawrence E. Kahn, agrees with "Jessica." Kahn refused to dismiss Brooks' lawsuit, saying prison officials have failed to provide adequate treatment for Brooks and his gender identity disorder. Brooks is seeking $650,000 of taxpayer money to receive psychotherapy, electrolysis, hormone therapy, breast implants, and genital reassignment surgery to change him into a woman, according to the story from Newsday (the story has since been removed from Newsday's site).
Enjoy your AOTD award, Kahn - you had the chance to strike down this lunacy, this total farce, before it cost taxpayers any more.
07-21-2003: God forbid the couch gets damp.
Everyone makes mistakes while driving at some point. It's human nature - we get distracted, or we take our eyes away from the road for a moment, or we drive a little too fast on snow. However, every now and again, we get an attack of the stupids.
Take for example, the woman that was hauling a couch down I-20 in Atlanta. According to the story from CNN, she got caught in a sudden rain shower. Unfortunately, at the very same instant, she got an attack of the stupids.
You see, instead of calmly driving on, she swerved for the shoulder, trying to park underneath an overpass to protect her couch. While this is part of human nature, perhaps she should have thought about the cars behind her. When she swerved, she set off a chain reaction that ended up crashing 24 cars. 24.
Luckily, only eleven people suffered injuries. So, today's AOTD award goes to this unnamed woman who caused a pileup just so her couch wouldn't get damp.
Today's honorable mention AOTD award goes to one Amber Norem, of Story City, Iowa. She was waiting to make a left turn onto Duff Avenue in Ames, Iowa, when she pulled out in front of contributing editor Mr. M. Mr. M schmucked her pretty good, but there was no way he could have stopped (she was sneaking through a line of traffic).
Unfortunately, Norem was "inbetween insurance," so Mr. M is getting screwed.
Enjoy your honorable mention, Norem.
07-19-2003: And today, from the "Stupid Criminals Department"...
It's midnight, in a suburb of Melbourne, Australia. A lone gas station attendant is tending to his chores, carrying two large sacks across the parking lot. Is he taking the day's proceeds to the bank for deposit? Are the sacks filled with cash, or checks?
A green van suddenly sped up in reverse, and the side door yanked open. A man wearing a makeshift mask points a sawed-off shotgun at the hapless attendant, demanding the bags. How much money will the armed robbers escape with? Will the attendant survive this ordeal?
The attendant let them take the bags, and the van sped off. According to the story from cnews, the attendant tried to tell the robber that the sacks were simply filled with garbage, but the robber wouldn't listen.
Yes, that's right - the attendant was taking out the trash when he was robbed of the sacks at gunpoint. Today's AOTD goes to the robbers that simply didn't do a very good job of .. well .. robbing.
07-18-2003: How about just paying the bill?
In Camp Verde, Arizona, a man was killed while trying to illegally reconnect the electricity to his business. According to the story (since removed from azcentral.com's site), Dennis Mahan was fried and thrown from his ladder as he attempted to reconnect power that was disconnected for nonpayment.
Arizona Public Service had warned Mahan last month about attempting to reconnect his service illegally. He was found laying next to a utility pole with a scorched mop handle.
Today's posthumous AOTD goes to Mahan, who should have just paid the damned bill.
07-16-2003: " ... I will enter for the benefit of the sick ... "
Dr. Robert Ricketson thinks outside the box. Unfortunately, he thinks outside the box while operating on people.
Arturo Iturralde went under Ricketson's knife back in 2001, having surgery done to his spine. According to CNN's report (since removed from CNN's web site), Ricketson had already lost his medical license in Texas, and was suspended in Oklahoma. But luckily for him, he was just under review in Hawaii, where he was performing spinal surgery on Iturralde.
The procedure seemed to go as planned, until the pin or rod that was to be inserted in Iturralde's spine went missing. No matter, Ricketson had a screwdriver handy. The shaft of the screwdriver was hacksawed off, and screwed into place instead of the intended length of surgical-grade material.
A length of SCREWDRIVER?!?
Iturralde's sister has brought a malpractice suit against Ricketson, after her brother eventually became a paraplegic and later died. Her lawyers contend that this was at least the eighth time Ricketson has been sued for malpractice.
Doctors make mistakes. They are only human. But, does anyone see a trend here? Today's AOTD goes to Ricketson, who appears to be quite a dangerous and reckless practitioner.
07-15-2003: Guard! Where's my mail? I'm gettin' twitchy.
Caitlyn Derck likes writing letters. The Fostoria, Ohio woman allegedly wrote ten letters to an inmate incarcerated at the Lorain Correctional Institution in Grafton, each one sealed with a kiss, I'm sure.
Ooops, nope, not with a kiss, with marijuana.
Derck sent the letters to the unidentified inmate, only to have prison officials examine and confiscate them. Under each stamp, Derck had placed a little less than a gram of marijuana.
Let's go back over the fine points to this story: Mailing marijuana. To a prison.
The Cleveland-area Morning Journal has the scoop on this tale of stupidity. At least she had the sense to turn herself in.
Enjoy the AOTD award, Caitlyn!
07-14-2003: Which statute of limitations was that again?
Takao Kamiguchi has been a man on the run, living under a pseudonym for 29 years. Kamiguchi is a former communist, and former member of the Japan Revolutionary Communist League.
He's been on the run since 1974, when he skipped his appearance in court stemming from arms possession and obstruction charges. He has since been wanted as a suspect in a murder case. For 29 years, Kamiguchi has successfully avoided police capture.
According to News.com.au's story, Kamiguchi moved to Yokosuka in February, and needed to register his name and address with local authorities so he could receive national health insurance.
And after 29 years on the run, he used his real name.
Yamiguchi believed that the statute of limitations had run out, and he was in the free and clear. Unfortunately for him, there is no statute of limitations in Japan, if a court case is still pending.
07-11-2003: I was at my McJob, and all of a sudden all these cops showed up!
In Tampa, Florida, the McDonald's resturant at 920 E. Fowler Ave. has always been popular with law enforcement officials out on the beat - they're open 24 hours a day.
Well, until yesterday that is. The St. Petersburg Times' report tells a chilling tale - after biting into a burger at the resturant, Deputy Stuart O'Shannon coughed, choked, and spit up blood. Deputy Daniel Witt was already on his second burger.
Upon investigation, someone had placed pieces of glass in the burgers, "very similar in size and color to the onions," according to Col. Jose Docobo. O'Shannon was flown to the hospital by air ambulance, while Witt was taken later for observation.
Following the discovery, the officers radioed for help and officials locked the resturant down. Three employees who had worked the food line at the time were taken for further questioning.
Now, I'm sure it's possible that this could be an accident. However, it seems highly unlikely that some pieces of glass approximating the size and color of onions might accidentally fall into two Sheriff's Deputies' burgers at the same time, don't you think?
I'm assuming that it was malicious, as is the Hillsborough Sheriff's Department. And today's AOTD goes to the stupid asshat that did it.
07-10-2003: But I thought someone was going to go get them...
Leslie Sue Smoot of Lancaster, California, was distracted on Tuesday, July 8th. She pulled into the daycare she helps run around nine in the morning, and went inside.
She left her three and five-year-old sons in the vehicle. She didn't return to the vehicle for another five hours.
Lancaster is in the desert. Lancaster got up around one hundred degrees fahrenheit on Tuesday, July 8th. She didn't leave the vehicle running, so there was no air conditioning for her sons.
The five-year-old was dead when she returned. The three-year-old died shortly afterwards at the hospital.
According to the story written by CNN, local authorities mentioned that there was a miscommunication and that Smoot had thought someone else was going to retrieve her children. OK, I can believe that ... for the first fifteen minutes. What about the other four hours and forty-five minutes?
Why didn't she notice when her children didn't appear? Why did she wait another four hours and forty-five minutes to look for them?!?
Did she forget she had children?
I can understand a mistake, an oversight, misplacing something. But you don't misplace your two sons in a baking hot vehicle in the desert for five hours. I can't imagine the anguish that family is going through because of this little "oversight," but face it - she killed her sons. Enjoy your AOTD award, Smoot.
07-09-2003: In the red corner, little Jimmy Walker, weighing in at 57 pounds!
I used to be in 4-H. For those of you that are not familiar with 4-H, it's an organization that focuses
on teaching children community service and good values, with some fun thrown in for good measure. I'm sure some of you were members, and I bet you agree that some of the activities were kinda boring. What can camp counselors do, then?
Well, you can arrange fistfights, charge admission,
and encourage betting like these asshats allegedly did. According to the WFTV article, counselors at the Smith Mountain Lake 4-H Educational Conference Center in Virginia did just that - kids were pitted against each other in fistfights, while the counselors charged a dollar a head to watch, and sent kids that didn't want to participate back to their cabins. Betting was allowed up to a four dollar maximum.
Keep in mind - this is all under the umbrella of "allegedly." However, a rash of black eyes and a broken hand seems to suggest something out of the ordinary happened at the camp, which ran for five days beginning June 30th.
So far, the Sheriff's Department is investigating. No sign of the rabid pack of lawyers yet, but I'm sure they're on their way.
07-08-2003: Today, we're going to play a little game. In the following list of events, try to catch where things become stupid:
- School in Tennessee has security cameras.
- This is a middle school.
- Cameras are in the locker rooms.
- The cameras captured images of middle school
children, in various stages of undress.
- Images are stored on a networked computer.
- An internet-accessible computer.
- With no firewall.
- And a default password, never changed since the
See, now, I personally can't figure out where things went from Bad Idea to Criminally Stupid. It's somewhere around step #3, but it's kinda hazy.
You can read about the pending $4.2 million dollar lawsuit here, on News.com's site. I typically don't agree with much of the litigation going on around this country, but after the images have been accessed by internet users 98 times, I kind of agree with this one. If one of them were my kid, I'd be screaming bloody murder.
07-07-2003: I took a break over the holiday weekend... I'm still off today and tomorrow, but I'll get off my lazy ass and publish an asshat at least.
Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota - a beautiful lake to say the least. Last Friday was the Fourth of July, and the boaters were out in droves. There was a fireworks display scheduled that night, so people were arriving early and docking to get good spots to watch the show.
And then an argument broke out between Ryan Nustad and Anthony Lee Zemke. It might have been over a slight bump between their boats, but more likely we'll never know exactly what touched off the fight. It turned physical, and eventually Zemke and his friend Jeffrey Ewald Walen threw Nustad overboard. Zemke threw his boat into gear, and they motored off.
Unfortunately, they ran over Nustad. He was killed, and Hennepin County medical examiners determined he died from blunt force injuries.
However, today's AOTD award is not being presented to Zemke or Walen. No, today's AOTD is being awarded to the boaters who refused to move their boats so that police could search for Nustad. According to the article in the Saint Paul Pioneer Press, Captain Bill Chandler of the Sheriff's Water Patrol stated "There were less-than-cooperative boaters who hampered our efforts because they wouldn't move because they didn't want to lose their spot for the fireworks."
You want to tell me what kind of person refuses to move their boat for a police search-and-rescue mission, because they might lose their fireworks-viewing spot? A true asshat.
So, to the boaters on Lake Minnetonka that didn't want to lose their precious place: enjoy your Asshat Of The Day award, you selfish bastards. Better hope no one obstructs rescue workers if you ever need help, eh?
07-03-2003: Everything in moderation.
Some of you will remember this asshat, the one that called 911 because his wife wouldn't make him dinner (for some reason, the Reuters link in the above AOTD entry doesn't work). Today's AOTD makes that one look like a true amateur. Today's AOTD is the Black Ninja.
You see, Howard V. Hill Jr. is the little punk who cried wolf. According to West Palm Beach police, Hill has called 911 over 900 times since May. No, I'm not kidding.
According to the Sun Sentinel's story (since removed from their site), Hill has called in with various reports, including a fictional officer-down call, wanting to shoot an officer himself with a bow, and various other made-up stories. Once dispatchers recognized his voice, he often called to make animal noises into the phone.
Over 900 calls since May. WTF? Hill has since been arrested, and released upon his own recognizance. Anyone want to give those poor dispatchers that had to deal with this asshat a "Howard V. Hill Jr. pinata" for their next office party?
07-02-2003: One, two, three, sue! One, two, three, sue!
July 2001 in Coshocton, Ohio - a horrible accident happened at Wal-Mart. A stack of dog food bowls toppled over, trapping Richard Whittington for thirty-six hours. Rescue crews from three surrounding towns worked frantically to free him. The local churches hurredly threw together a volunteer army to keep the rescuers fed, and a helicopter was waiting in the parking lot to carry him to a trauma ward the moment he was freed. The paramedics and firemen that worked so hard to save his life worked for thirty-six hours straight - no one went home.
In those dark and gloomy hours, the town of around fifty thousand put aside their differences and pulled together, frantically trying to save poor Richard Whittington trapped under all of those dog food bowls. Sadly, when rescuers finally pulled him from the rubble, his legs and left arm had been devoid of oxygenated blood for too long. Later, the trauma unit had to amputate. Whittington was left with only his right arm.
The above story is false. In reality, Whittington was hit by eight or nine dog food bowls on the neck and shoulder. He suffered two cuts, each less than an inch long. Whittington claims that those two little cuts took three to four months to heal.
And he's suing Wal-Mart for almost a million dollars.
Whittington is claiming "mental anguish," and will be representing himself in court. All I want for Christmas this year is a judge with zero tolerance for frivolous lawsuits.
Check out the short
story by the Associated Press and News Channel 5. I normally cheer for the "little guy," but this time the "little guy" is an asshat. Go Wal-Mart!
07-01-2003: Weymouth, Massachusetts - home of Abigail Adams, the first first lady, as well as some of the most pissed-off drivers in the world.
Anna Gitlin, a 25-year-old software engineer, must have been late for work. Perhaps she had a raging case of explosive diarrhea, or it was just a bad day for her, karma-wise. Or, perhaps, she's just an asshat.
When faced with commuting delays due to an accident, her selfishness and ego got the best of her. According to witnesses, she was quoted as having screamed "I don't care who [expletive] died. I'm more important" at a police officer on the scene.
OK, so it's a little road rage. Everyone gets it every now and again - I know I'm guilty of swearing at an occasional stupid driver or two. But, according to the Boston Globe's story (since removed from the Globe's site), this was far from over.
Following the outburst, police pulled Gitlin over at a gas station. Officer Steven Shalno, the same officer that received the "I'm more important" spiel, attempted to retrieve her license and registration. Instead of complying, Gitlin allegedly put the car into gear and began driving away. When Shalno attempted to grab the car, Gitlin closed the window on his hand. She seemingly released his hand several seconds later, before making a U-turn onto the street.
By now, I can only assume Shalno is pretty fed up with this screaming psychobitch "More important than thou" software engineer. He blocks her car with his body, standing in front of it. Gitlin edges forward, and finally stops for a red light. I'm assuming this was probably right at the intersection at the gas station.
Shalno should have just maced her or something - as soon as the light turned green, she clocked him with the car, tossing him onto the hood of her Toyota Corolla. Shalno was later taken to the hospital with scrapes, bruises, and possibly a knee injury.
And you think this is over.
So, Gitlin, a 25-year-old quivering mass of software engineer rage, then attempts to leave the scene of the crime! It wasn't until a semi blocked her way and an off-duty police officer snatched the keys from her ignition did she give up.
She's being charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, disorderly conduct, negligent driving, and attemped murder. Her lawyer was quoted as saying "I have no recollection of a cop being attacked because of the simple frustration of driving."
The simple frustration of driving?!? Sorry, honey, there are plenty of frustrated drivers out there. They aren't mowing down cops, only you are.