Watercooler Stories

Jan. 15, 2013 at 6:30 AM
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Suspect signed his own name at theft site

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- Philadelphia police said a man accused of posing as a fire inspector to steal from three institutions was arrested after signing his own name to a visitor log.

Investigators said Christopher Kieter, 26, first gained entry Jan. 3 to the Academy of Music, where he allegedly stole a Toshiba computer, headphones and a radio, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Monday.

Police said he posed as inspector again the following day at the Independence Visitor Center, where a security camera filed him allegedly taking a $2,500 handheld radio and a $639 wireless microphone.

Kieter allegedly stole two laptops in a similar incident Jan. 8 at the Art Institute of Philadelphia.

Investigators said Kieter was arrested after they discovered he had used his real name to sign the visitor log at the Art Institute.

Kieter was charged with impersonating a public official, criminal trespass, theft and related offenses.

Police said they recovered the stolen items Thursday during a search of Kieter's home.

Website gives contractors outlet

FEASTERVILLE, Pa., Jan. 14 (UPI) -- A Pennsylvania landscaper said a website he started for contractors to identify troublesome customers now has nearly 5,000 members.

Matt Stachel, 33, of Feasterville said he started NastyClient.com in response to media reports of bad contractors that failed to include reports of bad clients, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Monday.

"I didn't reinvent the wheel. I just gave it a bigger stage and a louder microphone," Stachel said.

He said he rewrites submissions to the website to take out opinions and keep the site factual. He said reports are eventually taken down if the clients and contractors resolve their differences.

Stachel said he now has nearly 5,000 members on his site, most of whom pay a $15.99-per year fee for the ability to search the site for clients by their names.

The landscaper said he is hoping the site will eventually become a resource for contractors nationwide.

Cyclists find horse poop in bike lanes

CLEVELAND, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- A Cleveland bicycle group says an increasing number of cyclists are complaining about horse droppings in the bicycle lanes of roads.

Jacob Van Sickle, executive director of Bike Cleveland, wrote an email to city leaders saying cyclists have been complaining of horse droppings in the bike lanes of the Detroit Superior Bridge and the Hope Memorial Bikeway on the Lorain-Carnegie bridge, The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported Monday.

"Hearing from a number of cyclists that there are piles of horse poop in the bike lane on the Detroit Superior bridge headed west-bound," Van Sickle said. "This is a hazard for cyclists riding in the bike lane who may swerve out of the bike lane to miss the mess."

Van Sickle said he has not yet received a reply from the city. He said he does not know who is responsible for cleaning up the equine messes.

"It's nice seeing police out of their cars and on the horses. It's a great community builder," Van Sickle said. "But if they're going to do that, they need to have a plan for dealing with the messes they make." 

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