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Dec. 12, 2012 at 6:30 AM   |   Comments

Owner wants monkey back

TORONTO, Dec. 11 (UPI) -- Toronto lawyer Yasmin Nakhuda said Tuesday she wants authorities to return her little monkey Darwin, who was found wandering outside an IKEA store.

Nakhuda told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. Darwin got out of her parked car Sunday afternoon. The rhesus macaque, sporting a faux-shearling coat and diapers, was captured in the IKEA parking lot and authorities placed it in a sanctuary

Nakhuda, a real estate lawyer, was fined $240 for violating the city's prohibited-animal bylaw. She said she is consulting an attorney about the possibility of regaining custody of the monkey she now considers part of her family, though she said she would consider allowing Darwin to remain at the sanctuary if she feels comfortable about his future there.

"If the sanctuary is able to convince me ... that they are doing a better job, then for sure. Because everything has to be what's best for him," she said.

Nakhuda told the CBC she wasn't always so fond of the little guy she obtained from a client. Darwin required regular diaper changes and would scream whenever she left the room. It was, she said, so "horrendous" a challenge she tried to give him back to his original owner but Darwin screamed the moment they were separated.

"The gentlemen who had him started laughing and said to me 'Well guess what? He has chosen you, you're his mom,'" Nakhuda said.

Nakhuda said she accepted the role and even relished it.

"The fun part was the day we sneaked into the CNE [Canadian National Exhibition] with him," she told the CBC. "And we had fun and he was there in my little baby carrier and nobody knew there was a little monkey in there."

Darwin, she said, is a big fan of Quiznos sandwiches and will "go crazy," standing on the dashboard of the car and jumping up and down fast whenever he sees the store's sign.


Woman allegedly asks $300,000 to pull over

MYRTLE BEACH, N.C., Dec. 11 (UPI) -- Police in North Carolina said a woman who refused to pull over for police called 911 to say she would stop her vehicle for $300,000.

Brunswick County sheriff's deputies said they attempted to pull over a vehicle driven by Jennifer Herring, 37, around 11:30 p.m. Monday, but the driver refused to stop, The Sun News, Myrtle Beach, S.C., reported Tuesday.

Deputies said Herring called 911 during the chase and told a dispatcher there was no emergency and she would not stop unless police promised her $300,000.

The sheriff's office said Herring was arrested when she pulled into a private driveway. The arrest report said Herring had been driving about 70 mph in a 45 mph speed zone.

Herring was charged with driving while impaired, felony fleeing to elude arrest, driving while license revoked, careless and reckless driving and driving left of center, the newspaper reported. She was also charged in an unrelated case on a charge of failing to appear in court for a driving while impaired charge.


Pig discovered in towed vehicle

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio, Dec. 11 (UPI) -- Police in Ohio said an abandoned vehicle found in the middle of a road had a pot-belly pig in the back seat when it was towed away.

Youngstown police said officers responded to a report of an abandoned vehicle around 1:30 p.m. Monday and they arrived to find a 2011 Nissan Cube parked perpendicular to the curb with heavy front-end damage, two flat tires and both air bags deployed, the Youngstown Vindicator reported Tuesday.

Police said there was a 250-pound pot-belly pig in the back seat of the car when it was towed away from the scene.

Officers said they tracked down the owner of the vehicle, a Pennsylvania woman who said she had left Penelope the pig in the car while she visited a friend in Youngstown. She said she had noticed the vehicle missing, but had assumed the "kids took it."

Police said they are looking for suspects in the auto theft and animal authorities have been notified of the incident.


Typo doesn't ruin field tractor proposal

DEER PARK, Wash., Dec. 11 (UPI) -- A Washington state farmer said a typo in the proposal message he wrote using a tractor on his 200-acre field did not stop his girlfriend from saying "yes."

Loren Lentz said he spent an hour and a half plowing the message into his Deer Park field and his 10-year-old daughter was the first to notice he had used a backwards "J" to spell "Jody," KREM-TV, Spokane, Wash., reported Tuesday.

Lentz said he thought his daughter was mistaken, but when he took his girlfriend, Jody Schaefer, up in an airplane to get a look at the proposal he realized the girl had been right.

However, he said Schaefer still accepted his proposal.

"Had the ring in my hand at that point and turned around and handed her the ring and she gave me a great big hug over the seat," he said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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