Money Matters - Simplified


Motorola Droid 2 allegedly explodes in man's ear

A Northern Texas man, Aron Embry, recently created buzz when he claimed that his newly bought Motorola Droid 2 exploded in his ear while he was in mid-conversation, thus leaving him injured.

Police: Man lost car, made up robbery

Boynton Beach, Fla. -- Police in Florida said a man allegedly invented a story about a carjacking because he couldn't remember where he had parked his car.

Boynton Beach police said they were approached by Craig Alberstat, 46, of Delray Beach, at about 2:20 a.m. Nov. 19 and he told them he had stopped while driving his 2003 Volkswagen Jetta to talk to a "cute girl on the street," the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Thursday.

Police said Alberstat told them he was then approached by four robbers who assaulted him and took the vehicle.

However, investigators said they soon determined Alberstat had invented the tale and he admitted to officers he had forgotten what he did with his car after using Xanax.

Grandma uses Facebook to confirm scam

Ocala, Fla. -- A 75-year-old Florida woman said she used Facebook to discover a man claiming to be her grandson and asking for money was actually a scammer.

Dolores Langley, 75, of Ocala, said she received a call from a man who claimed to be her grandson and told her he has been arrested in Canada with 2 ounces of marijuana in his vehicle, the Ocala Star-Banner reported Thursday.

Langley said she spoke with a second man who claimed to be a Canadian police officer and told her she would need to send a $5,050 money gram through Walmart to post bail.

However, Langley said the man sent up a "big red flag" when he told her to send the money to Haiti.

Two arrested for motorized cart theft

Huntington, W.Va. -- Authorities in West Virginia said a man and a woman were arrested after allegedly stealing a motorized cart from Wal-Mart and taking it to a strip club.

Cabell County sheriff's deputies said Jonathan Lee Misner, 34, and Billie Jo Stevenson, 36, both of Huntington, were arrested in the early hours Monday and charged with grand larceny and public intoxication, The Herald-Dispatch, Huntington, reported Wednesday.

Man wants his pot back from the sheriff

Seattle -- A man allegedly caught walking into a Seattle courthouse with a small amount of marijuana is demanding it back.

John Worthington of Renton, Wash., representing himself, is not denying possession or even invoking his medical marijuana card, reported.

Citing a state Board of Pharmacy decision that pot has medicinal value, he asserted Tuesday that it was an "herbal substance," not a drug, and therefore does not fall under laws regulating illegal narcotics.

Worthington was passing through security on his way to the King County Courthouse's law library Oct. 14 when he allegedly placed an old baggy of pot tucked in his jacket in a security tray, the report said.

Police watch suspect for ingested jewels

Washington, Pa. -- Police in Pennsylvania said they are waiting to discover whether a man found to have swallowed two stolen rings also swallowed a pair of bracelets.

North Strabane Township police said three rings -- two ingested -- were recovered from Robert Spriggs, 53, after he allegedly stole them Saturday from his 81-year-old mother and he is now being observed at Washington County Jail to see if he swallowed any other jewelry, the Washington (Pa.) Observer-Reporter reported Wednesday.

"It is possible he may have ingested more than what we know," township police Lt. Dan Levi said. "Two tennis bracelets are also missing. We are in a holding pattern."

Police said Spriggs' cell at the jail does not have a flushable toilet.

Mouse head biter acquitted of cruelty

Gotland, Sweden -- A Swedish court has acquitted a man videotaped biting a live mouse's head off because the action was "repulsive, but not criminal."

The Gotland court said the 23-year-old man's actions were "not criminal," as the mouse's death was quick and there was no evidence to suggest the man intended to cause undue suffering to the rodent, the Swedish news agency Tidningarnas Telegrambyra reported Wednesday.

The April incident, which resulted in animal cruelty charges, was recorded on a cellphone camera.

Prosecutor Anna Beckman said she plans to appeal the decision.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

Vestment-clad man took collection plate

Jackson, Mich. -- A Michigan priest said a man wearing priestly vestments stole $3,6000 in a collection plate after he had asked the priest for money and showed identification.

The Rev. Bob Pienta of St. John Catholic Church in Jackson said a man used vestments from the church as a disguise during a Saturday mass and took the collection plate from the front of the church before walking out the door, The Jackson Citizen-Patriot reported Tuesday.

Pienta said members of the congregation described the man to him and he realized it was the same man who had asked him for money prior to the service. He said the man had showed him his ID and the pastor gave the information to police.

Man arrested for bank crash

Naples, Fla. -- Police in Florida said a man who slammed his car into a bank believed the government was after him for posting YouTube videos about the banking system.

Naples police said Phil Nguyen, 24, of Fort Myers, crashed his green Honda into the front of a Comerica Bank at about 10:30 p.m. Saturday and the car came to rest about 20 to 30 feet into the building, the Naples Daily Post reported Tuesday.

Police said Nguyen told officers and firefighters he crashed into the building then backed his car up and crashed a second time to increase the damage.

Investigators said Nguyen believed he was being targeted by the CIA for criticizing the U.S. banking system in a series of YouTube videos.

Man admits faking assault report

West Pawlet, Vt. -- Vermont police say a man who told them he'd been stabbed Halloween night by someone dressed in a gorilla costume admitted to fabricating the claim.

Donald Gould, 22, of West Pawlet, Vt., called police Halloween night to say he answered a knock on his door and was stabbed by a person wearing a dark-colored gorilla costume, the (Glens Falls, N.Y.) Post-Star reported Sunday.

Gould suffered a minor puncture wound in his arm and was taken to Glens Falls Hospital, just over the state line in New York, treated and released.

Vermont State Police said after questioning numerous potential suspects and interviewing Gould several more times, Gould admitted he made up the claim.