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Dead goose falls from sky, knocks out hunter

A Maryland waterfowl hunter got a goose, but not in the way he expected.

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Robert Meilhammer, 51, of Crapo was hunting with a group near Miles River in Easton late Thursday afternoon, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources said in a news release. The hunting group took shots at a flock of geese flying overhead, and one goose was struck dead, falling approximately 90 feet and striking Meilhammer.

Meilhammer was knocked unconscious and suffered head and facial injuries. The Maryland DNR says the hunter was taken to a trauma center and is in stable condition.

Family writes obituary for beloved chicken named ‘Big Mama’

The Sword family readily admits that not every chicken deserves an obituary, but Big Mama was special.

Big Mama, a Rhode Island Red chicken, once lived in a Houston apartment until her original owners decided to have her euthanized, The Eagle reported. A veterinarian intervened, and the chicken was put up for adoption. The Swords adopted Big Mama in 2013, after falling in love with a photo of the year-old chicken checking out its reflection in a mirror.

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The family slowly acclimated Big Mama to a more natural outdoor life with a flock of free-range chickens on their College Station property. Stephanie Sword told The Eagle that Big Mama maintained a few quirks from her indoor living years, such as refusing to go into the coop at times and trying to come inside the house. In bad weather, Big Mama could be seen taking refuge on patio furniture, Sword said.

The chicken quickly became a beloved member of the family, and even appeared in the family Christmas card last year. The Sword family was devastated when they found her dead in her coop last week, The Eagle reported. The family wanted to honor her and those who saved her from euthanasia by telling her story in an obituary, which was published in The Eagle on Tuesday.

Big Mama is survived by the Sword family and her flock: Bubbles, Runt, Ms. S, Funky, Lucky and Blondie.

Big Mama also received a musical tribute.

Waffle House customer says, 'I'll go to jail over barbecue sauce' -- and does

Things got hot at a Waffle House in Middle Georgia this week over a customer’s request for barbecue sauce.

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Early Tuesday, a man sat down for some food at the restaurant on Riverside Drive near Interstate 75 in Macon, according to the Macon Telegraph.

Willie Edward Drake, 43, of Columbus, asked for some barbecue sauce, according to a Bibb County sheriff’s report. Drake was told the restaurant had none, and then things got spicy, according to the sheriff’s report.

The man “then began screaming obscenities and insulting” the workers, then he reportedly added, “I’ll go to (expletive) jail over some barbecue sauce!”

And soon, he did.

When deputies arrived, Drake was allegedly “uncooperative and disorderly.”

He was jailed on a disorderly conduct charge, the newspaper reported.

Read more of the story here.

Deputies: Escaped inmate caught with home-cooked food, alcohol outside jail

Authorities arrested an escaped inmate Wednesday after officials said he was caught picking up contraband, including a large amount of home-cooked food and four bottles of alcohol, to bring back to the prison.

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Joshua Hansen, 25, was originally booked into the Federal Correctional Complex in Beaumont, Texas, on narcotics charges, according to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

He was spotted Wednesday on the back side of the prison after a rancher told authorities that inmates were escaping the facility and crossing onto his land, deputies said. Around 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, narcotics investigators and officers with the U.S. Marshals Service set up surveillance outside the prison. They said they spotted a vehicle dropping a large duffel bag on the rancher’s private property and watched as Hansen ran from the prison’s grounds to pick up the bag around 7:30 p.m.

Deputies apprehended Hansen as he was running back toward the prison, authorities said. He was charged with escape and possession of marijuana.

Inside the duffel bag, deputies said they found three bottles of brandy, a bottle of whiskey, multiple bags of tobacco, packaged snacks, fruit and home-cooked food.

Hansen remained jailed Friday.

Deputies: Florida man tries to order burrito from bank, gets charged with DUI

Police in Florida arrested a 28-year-old man on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol after authorities said he attempted to order a burrito from a Bank of America after confusing it for a Taco Bell, according to multiple reports.

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Records from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office show authorities arrested Douglas Jon Francisco, 28, on Wednesday.

The manager of the Bank of America branch on Mariner Boulevard in Spring Hill, Martin Claussen, called authorities Wednesday afternoon after he said he found a blue Hyundai in the bank’s drive-up bank lane with a man who appeared to be passed out inside, WTSP reported.

Claussen said he had to bang on the car window several times before Francisco awoke, according to the Tampa Bay Times. When Francisco saw the bank manager, deputies said he tried to order a burrito.

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Claussen told Francisco that he was not at a Taco Bell and Francisco drove the Hyundai to the bank’s front parking lot, according to the Times. Deputies said he was in the front parking lot, the car still idling, when authorities arrived.

In an arrest report, a deputy wrote that Francisco “made several statements that were differing from reality” and denied asking Claussen for a burrito. Deputies said his responses during a field sobriety test “were slow in a way that was consistent with someone on prescription narcotics,” WTSP reported. He was given a drug test, the results of which were pending.

During a search of the Hyundai, deputies said they found prescription medication that had been made out in Francisco’s name, according to the Times.

Jail records show Francisco was booked into the Hernando County Detention Center around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday and released Thursday afternoon on a $500 bond.

Woman says neighborhood church bells too loud

The bells from a church in New Mexico are anything but heavenly-sounding to one disgruntled neighbor.

Bernadette Hall-Cuaron told KOB that she's lived near Our Lady of Guadalupe church for years with no issues, but a couple of months ago, the church switched to an electronic bell system. 

The switch means that the bells sound several times per day, and each occasion can include 20-25 bell rings, according to Hall-Cuaron. The electronic bell system also plays songs like "Amazing Grace."

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Hall-Cuaron told KOB that the bells are so loud they wake her up, and make it difficult to work from home. She wishes church leadership would have consulted with residents in the area before installing the new bell system. She also said that she's complained directly to church officials, but she is not satisfied with their response.

The church's pastor told KOB that he's lowered the volume and is starting the bells at 8 a.m. instead of 6 a.m. in response to Hall-Cuaron's complaints. 

While Hall-Cuaraon said the bells are annoying enough to deter people from going to church, the pastor told KOB that he's heard from neighbors who appreciate the bells.

Florida man accused of hiding full rack of stolen ribs in his pants

A Florida man’s alleged attempt at stealing food was short-ribbed.

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According to TCPalm, authorities said Maeli Aguilar-Alvarez, 26, of Indiantown tried to get away with placing a few items into his pants waistband and walking out of Rines Market IGA in December. The Martin County Sheriff’s Office claimed that he might have gotten away with it, had a sergeant not spotted him revealing some of the evidence of his crime in full view.

According to an arrest affidavit, Aguilar-Alvarez “removed a full rack of ribs from his waistband.”

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And that’s not all he's accused of stealing. The grocery list of stolen items reportedly included the following:

  • Nine pieces of fried chicken
  • Some mashed potatoes
  • Two packs of hamburger buns
  • And, of course, the one “full rack of ribs” — whether they were beef or pork has not been clarified

The price tag for this alleged theft, which sounds like a carnivorous take on the “12 Days of Christmas,” amounted to $32.49.

Authorities said Aguilar-Alvarez smelled a little like alcohol and was intoxicated at the time.

CDC prepares for nuclear attack

The Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is preparing for the possibility of a nuclear event amid rising tensions between North Korea and the United States.

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President Donald Trump took to Twitter last week to mock North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his recent message in which the dictator said he had a “button for nuclear weapons on my table” and bragged that the “entire area of the U.S. mainland is within our nuclear strike range.”

According to the New York Times, security experts have noted, “There is no reasonable military option for restraining North Korea that would not involve unacceptable loss of life.”

>> Related: KFC mocks Trump's 'nuclear button' tweet in threat to McDonald's

In response to the growing fear around the possibility of a nuclear event this week, the agency scheduled a “Public Health Response to a Nuclear Detonation” briefing for 1-2 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 16 with government officials to inform the public about what preparations have been made.

From the scheduled announcement:

“While a nuclear detonation is unlikely, it would have devastating results and there would be limited time to take critical protection steps. Despite the fear surrounding such an event, planning and preparation can lessen deaths and illness. For instance, most people don’t realize that sheltering in place for at least 24 hours is crucial to saving lives and reducing exposure to radiation. While federal, state, and local agencies will lead the immediate response efforts, public health will play a key role in responding.

“Join us for this session of Grand Rounds to learn what public health programs have done on a federal, state, and local level to prepare for a nuclear detonation. Learn how planning and preparation efforts for a nuclear detonation are similar and different from other emergency response planning efforts.”

The expert presentation includes:

- Dan Sosin: deputy director, chief medical officer at the CDC’s Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response

- Capt. Michael Noska: radiation safety officer and senior advisor at U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Advisory Team for Environment, Food and Health

- Robert Whitcomb: radiation studies chief at CDC’s division of environmental hazards and health effects and the National Center for Environmental Health

- Betsy Kagey: academic and special projects liaison at Georgia Department of Health’s Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response, division of health protection. 

You must have prior security clearance. U.S. citizens can submit a request to the Grand Rounds Team by emailing Note that a U.S.-issued photo ID is required. Non-U.S. citizens must submit their requests 20 days prior to the session.

Read more information at

Wisconsin football players catch 450-pound shark days before Orange Bowl win

You can’t do this at every bowl destination. Wisconsin’s football team landed in Miami for the Orange Bowl earlier in the week, and between practices and team outings, a few teammates had the chance to schedule some deep-sea fishing.

>> Read more Floridoh! stories

Members of Wisconsin’s football team went fishing somewhere near Miami this week and caught a 450-pound hammerhead shark. The Badgers’ Twitter account posted a photo of the impressive catch Wednesday.

>> See the photo here

The Badgers’ Orange Bowl gift bag included a PlayStation 4, wireless headphones, a 39-inch television and more, but none of the gadgets compare to a huge hammerhead. 

>> Read more trending news 

Wisconsin went on to defeat Miami 34-24 on Saturday night.

Florida man said he pummeled ATM for giving him too much money, police say

Authorities in Florida arrested a 23-year-old man after he was accused of punching an ATM outside a Wells Fargo bank in Cocoa.

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Police identified the suspect as Michael Joseph Oleksik. He was charged with a felony charge of criminal mischief.

A bank manager was notified around 1 p.m. Nov. 29 about a man who was outside the Wells Fargo at 834 North Cocoa Blvd., punching the screen. Wells Fargo security guards confirmed that the incident took place after viewing surveillance video.

>> Read more Floridoh! stories 

A short while later, bank officials reached Oleksik by phone, according to authorities. He said he punched the ATM’s screen because the machine was giving him too much money and he didn’t know what to do, police said. He said he was in a hurry because he had to go to work, so he left the bank after causing the damage, according to authorities.

He was accused of causing more than $5,000 worth of damage to the ATM.

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

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