Watercooler Stories

By United Press International  |  March 27, 2007 at 6:30 AM
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Brothel burned by firefighters

RENO, Nev., March 27 (UPI) -- There was a new kind of hot in an old brothel as firefighters in Storey County, Nev., burned the building donated to the county for fire training.

The Mustang Ranch 2 building, which played host to legal prostitution from 1983-99, was set afire Sunday to allow firefighters to practice hosing down burning structures and observe fire behavior, KTVN-TV, Reno, Nev., reported Monday.

Dennis Hof, who also owns the famed Moonlite Bunny Ranch brothel, donated the building to the county when it his plan to convert the unsound structure into a brothel museum turned out to be too costly.

Storey County officials said the building's state of disrepair made it a nuisance to the county.

The brothel, which had been owned by Joe Conforte during its days of operation, was shut down in 1999 after several years of tax problems.

Wrong way drive prompts run-in with police

NEW HAVEN, Conn., March 27 (UPI) -- A 45-year-old woman who allegedly drove the wrong way on a Connecticut road and crashed into a police cruiser was arrested.

The Hartford (Conn.) Courant reported state police arrested the unidentified woman after the accident Monday in the town of Seymour.

She was not only charged with driving the wrong way on the highway, but also with drunk driving, failure to stop on the proper side of the road and striking a police car with her vehicle.

The unusual incident occurred when the woman allegedly began driving the wrong way on Connecticut's Route 8.

While the approaching officer attempted to distance his car from the oncoming vehicle, the woman allegedly smashed her car head-on into the police cruiser.

Both cars were damaged, no one was injured in the accident.

School girl 'arrested' at parents' request

SHADY COVE, Ore., March 27 (UPI) -- The police chief of Shady Cove, Ore., said he handcuffed a third-grade girl at her school and escorted her home at the request of her parents.

Shady Cove Police Chief Rick Mendenhall said the girl, whose name and age were not released for privacy reasons, was taken from school to her home for a talk with her mother about theft, the Medford (Ore.) Mail Tribune reported Monday.

"The parents are trying to instill responsibility and show consequences," he said. "This was my first request like this, but I would do it for any parent."

Mendenhall said the girl, who had been caught stealing on two separate occasions, was handcuffed in her third-grade classroom and driven home in a police car. He said the "arrest" had been requested by the girl's parents and no actual charges were filed. "If we can show people consequences for their actions and keep them out of the criminal justice system, I'm going to do it," Mendenhall said.

Drivers decry bright lights

SAN DIEGO, March 27 (UPI) -- Many Southern California highway drivers are complaining that high-intensity headlights are creating traffic hazards on the roads at night.

Drivers complain that the super bright lights blind them on the road and could lead to hazards, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Monday.

"If bright lights have been bothering you more lately when you drive at night, you are not alone," reads a pamphlet issued by the Automobile Club of Southern California.

"They're very dangerous," Point Loma, Calif., resident George Martinez told the newspaper. "They actually blind you is what they do."

Federal highway safety officials awarded a $900,000 grant last year to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to analyze the possible safety risks posed by the lights.

John Bullough, the head researcher of the ongoing study, said in the Union-Tribune article that while there is no direct proof that the bright lights can trigger accidents, "people do behave differently when they see these kinds of lights."

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