An eye for an eye, a pig for a pig
PAINESVILLE, Ohio — A man who called a police officer a pig has served his sentence with a sow.
A lunchtime crowd — including his daughter — jeered and joked with Steven Thompson on Friday as he stood on a city sidewalk next to a 350-pound pig in a pen for two hours, with a sign reading, “This is not a police officer.”
Painesville Municipal Judge Michael Cicconetti ordered the sentence instead of jail time following Thompson’s guilty plea to disorderly conduct.
Thompson, 44, had used the word “pig” while shouting obscenities in a Jan. 28 confrontation with a city police officer.
“I made a mistake, and now I’m sorry and I’m paying for it,” Thompson said in a speech next to the pen.
His teen-age daughter and friends from her high school shouted, “Way to go, Mr. Thompson!”
A farmer from nearby Perry loaned the city the sow, an award-winning Duroc purebred. Painesville is about 30 miles east of Cleveland.
YORK, Pa. — When court clerks asked York County Prison inmate Greg Gould Jr. to list his occupation for a marriage license, he replied “criminal.”
It was part of a ceremony Jan. 25 held in the basement of the county courthouse.
“That was a joke. Did they write it down that way?” asked Gould, 30, who was escorted by sheriff’s deputies.
“Well, he is a criminal,” said York County Sheriff Bill Hose.
Gould married 27-year-old Valentina Marie Natasha Roberts, the mother of his two children. No family or friends were allowed in the courtroom where the wedding took place.
Gould was convicted Jan. 10 of multiple robbery counts in a 1999 gas station holdup. His new wife is on probation until 2003; she pleaded guilty to supplying Gould and a co-defendant with handguns used in the robbery.
Valentina Gould said “it isn’t tough” being married to someone in prison, and she’s standing by her husband.
“I love him; the commitment’s there,” she said.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Maryland’s former first lady — not the current one — soon will sit for an oil portrait that may hang permanently in the governor’s residence.
Frances Glendening and Gov. Parris Glendening divorced in November. But the hanging of their official state portraits will go ahead as planned, said officials with the Government House Foundation. The foundation raises money to pay for the portraits and other improvements to the residence.
The portraits traditionally are not hung until after a governor is out of office. It is not known whether Glendening’s bride, Jennifer Crawford, 35, a former deputy chief of staff, will request a portrait of her own.
Mike Morrill, the governor’s spokesman, said, “They just got married. It’s not the appropriate time to ask.”
The foundation so far is not raising money for a portrait for Crawford, said board chairman William Myers.
The former first lady is known for her work promoting the arts in Maryland. She also initiated a Maryland State Archives research project that became an exhibit highlighting the state’s other first ladies.
The governor, 59, and Frances Glendening, 50, were married nearly 25 years. He married Crawford, the state’s 56th first lady, last month.
Frances Glendening said she looks forward to sitting for the portrait and plans to wear “something bright.”
ITHACA, N.Y. (AP) — Wanted: ornery felines.
Researchers have begun recruiting 20 of the most foul-mannered cats in upstate New York for an experiment to see whether drugs will calm their nerves and stop fights.
Behavior specialists at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine want to test the theory that the scrappy cats are really suffering from social anxiety.
“We’re looking for 20 real bullies — the ones that start the fights — to see whether cat-to-cat aggression can be reduced with anti-anxiety medication,” said Tracy Kroll, a veterinary resident and researcher in Cornell’s Animal Behavior Clinic.
The researchers will be using clomipramine, which is used in humans under the brand name Anafranil to treat panic and anxiety disorders. In dogs, under the brand name Clomicalm, it treats “separation anxiety,” when canines find the absence of their owners to be unbearable.
“Some of the over-anxiety may be territorial or it may start when you bring a new cat into the house,” Kroll said. “Then there’s the so-called redirected aggression, when your indoor cat can’t reach a cat outside the window, so it fights with a sibling or other feline friend inside.”