News of the Weird

Lead Stories

For an August feature on Rhonda Lenair, a Newbury, Massachusetts, "medical intuitive," a Boston Globe editor confirmed that Lenair had discerned the editor's various body problems with "75 to 80 percent" accuracy on the basis of a mere telephone call. Lenair (fee: $275) said she is like an ultrasound machine in that she can mentally scan the body and tap into the patient's energy field, and sometimes can even feel the patient's pain by transference. Said one fawning Harvard-clinic psychiatrist, "Sitting in front of her is like being in front of an Xray machine," that it was "almost embarrassing" how well she could read him.

Among the men's fashions introduced in Paris in July were a crocheted face mask (reminiscent of Hannibal Lecter) and a flower-print jacket and matching headscarf, from Belgian designer Walter Van Bierendonck; a white full skirt for men to wear over blue jeans, from Dutch designer Dries Van Noten; and, also to be worn with blue jeans and a white shirt: a formal black dorsal wing extending five feet out on each side (by a designer unidentified in an Associated Press dispatch).

God, the Micromanager

Debtors Norman and Melissa Cameron said in court documents that God told them they didn't have to pay their mortgage (Hartford, Connecticut, August). Dean William Trammel, 22, charged with assaulting a flight attendant, said in court that God told him he didn't have to remain seated during the landing (Baltimore, January). Donald R. Delgade, 37, arrested for driving through the front door of the James R. Thompson Center in Chicago, said God told him to (June). Priscilla Lee Jansma, 44, arrested for killing her husband, told police, "Jesus told me it was okay to do it" (Aurora, Colorado, June).

Police Blotter

Driver Lamarn Williams, 27, and his three passengers were arrested in August near Washington, Pennsylvania, by a state trooper who had intended only to warn Williams for driving too fast. However, when the trooper asked the obligatory question about whether the car contained any guns or drugs, passenger Marlon Martez Lee's eyes rolled back in his head, and he fainted. The trooper called for drug-sniffing dogs, and about ten kilograms of cocaine (value: $1 million) were found in the trunk.

The "ugly robber" plaguing the Phoenix area was arrested in July in Peoria, Arizona. Karen Marie Tribby, 33, reportedly confessed to 12 robberies in which police bulletins afterward in each case described the robber as a "very ugly woman." A police spokesman justified that description by pointing out that "every victim who has seen her" has described her as "very ugly."

From the Police Blotter column of The State Journal-Register, Springfield, Illinois, July 29: A 41-year-old man reported that another man who lives at the same residence on East Adams Street may have stolen his glass eye. Both men have glass eyes, but the alleged victim said his was missing from his pocket but that another one was left in its place. The victim admitted he "did not see the exchange."

-- By Chuck Shepherd


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