Odds and Ends – May 9, 2019


Finders keepers? Police say no way after $30K spills on road

Grand Haven, Mich. (AP) — Police in Michigan are appealing to people to surrender their instant riches after a box with $30,000 fell off the back of a truck. Authorities in Grand Haven say drivers stopped Thursday to pick up cash for themselves. Only $2,500 was immediately recovered and returned to the owner, who had forgotten that a cash box was on the truck’s bumper. Traffic was backed up on U.S. 31 after money hit the ground. But by Saturday, more money was trickling in. The Department of Public Safety says two teenagers turned in $630, and a woman gave up nearly $3,900. The department says on Facebook: “We commend you for your honesty!”


Pilot rescued from plane that crash-landed atop Idaho tree

McCall, Idaho (AP) — A pilot who was trying to crash-land this week in an Idaho field instead brought his small plane to rest at the top of a 60-foot (18-meter) tree, officials said. Pilot John Gregory was not hurt in the Monday night crash, which happened when his single-engine Piper Cub PA-18 lost power and a wing strut became entangled in the tree, according to the fire department in the resort town of McCall. Gregory was rescued from his perch atop the giant white fir by volunteer firefighter Randy Acker, who owns a tree removal company. “My thought was, ‘I need to get up there and see what’s going on,'” Acker said. Acker had Gregory stand up in the plane so he could cut the pilot’s harness and clip him to a safety line for the descent. Gregory was brought down safely with the plane still lodged in the branches. Most of the weight of the plane was borne by one tree, but it also was touching a nearby tree. “Those wings were perfectly centered over the top of the tree,” said McCall Fire Capt. Brandon Swain. A piece of the plane’s propeller and one of its wheels had fallen to the ground, but the rest of the plane was intact, suspended in the tree. Acker cut branches as he scaled the tree until he was about 20 feet (6 meters) from the top, where higher branches were supporting the plane. Swain said Acker then secured the plane to the tree using rope webbing before Gregory was rescued. “I’ve never seen anything like this happen,” Acker said. “Just glad I was able to help.” Officials are trying to determine how to remove the plane from its perch and warned people to stay away from it.

(Undersheriff Jason Speer/Valley County Sheriff's Office via AP)
(Undersheriff Jason Speer/Valley County Sheriff’s Office via AP)


‘Snot otter’ named Pennsylvania’s official amphibian

Harrisburg, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania’s new official amphibian is a slimy, 2-foot-long (0.6-meter) salamander that needs clean streams to thrive. Gov. Tom Wolf signed legislation Tuesday granting the honor to the Eastern hellbender, a nocturnal animal whose colorful nicknames include snot otter, lasagna lizard and mud devil. Members of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s student leadership council have spent three years campaigning to get it designated as the state’s official amphibian, helped by Lycoming College’s Clean Water Institute. It’s the largest salamander in North America. Wolf says the most recent official designation of that type in the state occurred in 1974, when the firefly was named Pennsylvania’s official insect.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

Wyoming man shoplifted at store, applied for job, police say

Gillette, Wyo. (AP) — Police in northern Wyoming say a man who allegedly shoplifted at the same store twice in one day also asked to fill out a job application during one of his visits. The Gillette News Record reported Sunday the 36-year-old man went to the Sportsman’s Warehouse in Gillette and bought some items with a rewards card but allegedly took sunglasses and ammunition without paying for them. Police say he returned to the store a few hours later, asked to fill out the job application and left with two more pairs of sunglasses, allegedly without paying for them. Officers issued the man a citation for the alleged thefts and recovered the items. The suspect’s name wasn’t immediately available.