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Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 8:45 EDT

Oddities News Archive - March 24, 2009

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Toronto taxpayers will pay the $4,500 bill a female city councilor incurred to help her overcome speaking in a shrill voice, the Toronto Star reported.

A pair of Domino's Pizza managers in Des Moines, Iowa, said they followed an alleged robber and recovered most of the money he took from the store. Store manager Steve Huebner and district manager Mark Forder said they decided to follow the suspect, identified by police as David Edward Williams, 55, despite the fact that he had told an employee that he had a gun, the Des Moines Register reported Tuesday. The managers said the robber had taken $2 from the pocket of an employee and $115 from a cash register. They said they confronted Williams on the street and he immediately gave them $97. His initial reaction was, 'I just need $20,' Huebner said. The managers followed Williams back to his apartment and called police.

Authorities said a Florida woman was charged with disorderly conduct after she allegedly chased a restaurant employee and threw a pie at a sheriff's deputy. A Burger King employee told authorities that Denise Lauria, 57, of Sebastian, Fla., was belligerent while ordering her food from the drive-through lane at 10:20 p.m.

A Chicago theater is seeking competitors for So You Think You Can Strip, an American Idol style contest for women willing to shed their clothes. The Admiral Theatre, an adult venue, said it is seeking students, housewives, secretaries and the girls next door to take off their clothes in a contest beginning Thursday, the Chicago Tribune reported Tuesday. I don't care what you look like, what you do, what your background is, said Tim Brown, the theater's marketing manager.

The owner of a suburban Chicago tavern said he is planning to tear down a wall that was installed by his father more than 60 years ago to see what it is hiding. Pete Jakstas said his father installed the wall in 1943 when the Mineola Hotel and Lounge in Fox Lake, Ill., was redesigned to its current floor plan and he has always wanted to tear it down to have a look-see, the Arlington Heights (Ill.) Daily Herald reported Tuesday. Now, I'm gonna find out, he said.

A proposed overhaul of the Chicago Public High Schools Athletic Association bylaws would ban coaches from displays of temper including pushing and paddling. The proposal, which comes after allegations last fall that at least four coaches at Chicago Public Schools had struck or paddled athletes under their supervision, would also force coaches to attend annual training sessions and pass criminal background checks, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Tuesday. Patrick Rocks, a lawyer for the school district, said CPS officials want to make it clear that they don't support any form of corporal punishment. "We're trying to send a message.

A pair of Orlando, Fla., third graders raised $23,856.73 for M.D.

A University of West Georgia campus organization said it has captured, fixed, vaccinated and released 36 feral cats since October 2007. Ineke Abunawass, who works in the school's environmental safety and health office, said she came up with the CampusCATS catch-and-release scheme as a humane way to deal with the estimated 150 to 200 feral cats living on campus, the Carrollton Times-Georgian reported Tuesday. She said the cats are captured in humane traps and taken to the West Georgia Spay and Neuter clinic in Villa Rica, where the animals are spayed and vaccinated for rabies and distemper.

Social networking Web site Twitter has shut down an account that falsely claimed to be affiliated with the police department of Austin, Texas. The AustinPD page, which was created in 2008, had featured the official City of Austin seal and published comments pretended to be from real Austin police officers, the Austin American-Statesman reported Tuesday. Although some may dismiss the site as a simple prank or minor irritant, the fact is that the information presented was false and misleading and could lead to unwarranted concern by the public, Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo said Monday. The page, which had about 450 followers, now states that it has been suspended due to strange activity. Anne Morgan, Austin's chief of litigation, said officials learned about the page about a week and a half ago and immediately lobbied Twitter to have it taken down. What we really wanted was for Twitter to take the page down and educate people that it wasn't a police department site, Morgan said.

A New York woman said police tracked down the man who stole her iPhone after he used the device to e-mail pictures of himself. Sayaka Fukuda, 29, who moved to New York from Tokyo three years ago, said Daquan Mathis, 18, and an accomplice approached her Feb. 21 at 4:30 a.m.