A collection of unusual and quirky stories from across Canada and around the world
HAVE A BLAST
DE RIDDER, LA. — Looking to offer something a little different as a grand prize for a fundraiser, organizers of a police raffle decided to give away the chance to Taser a police officer. A certified instructor would actually shoot the gun under controlled conditions to demonstrate what officers endure in training, according to police chief John Gott in De Ridder. While the idea garnered mixed reviews on social media, according to the American Press, the event and raffle were suggested by the officers themselves, said Gott: “They were the ones who came up with the idea to have a volunteer Tased as an education tool.” The officers also wanted the event to be light-hearted, he said. “They are willing to do whatever it takes to raise money to purchase toys for local families in need, and if it means putting themselves in front of a Taser, they are more than willing to do so.”
TRAINING CAN BE TOUGH
BARRIE, ONT. — The first day of work is usually about making good first impressions, but one fast-food restaurant employee apparently took that the wrong way — when he punched his manager. Police were called to a Barrie, Ont., restaurant to investigate a reported altercation, according to the Canadian Press. The 20-year-old man had just started the job that day and was being trained by the manager, but when corrected, he allegedly made the blow. The worker then fled the establishment — but turned himself in the next day, to be charged with assault.
MORE THAN STOIC
RAIPUR, INDIA — News anchors always have to be ready to deal with the unexpected when they’re live on air, but Supreet Kaur of IBC24 in India did amazingly well recently, according to CNN. The nine-year veteran was reporting on a deadly car accident — with three people dead and two injured — but after hearing more details and seeing images from the scene, she started to wonder if her husband was involved. Kaur kept on reporting but her suspicions were later confirmed when she found out her husband had died in the crash. “She was doing her job, and she kept on doing it with composure and without showing her emotions on air,” said Ravi Kant Mittal, editor-in-chief at IBC24. Even the state’s chief minister, Raman Singh, tweeted about the incident: “Salute Supreet’s strength in dealing with her husband’s demise with extraordinary bravery and professionalism. May (his) departed soul rest in peace.”
SCHOOLED ON SCREENING
NEW PITTSBURG, KAN. — Pittsburg High School (PHS) in Kansas is looking for another principal after the newly hired Amy Robertson resigned. The reason? A group of students looked into her background and found questionable credentials, according to the Kansas City Star. “She was going to be the head of our school, and we wanted to be assured that she was qualified and had the proper credentials,” said Trina Paul, a senior and editor of the Booster Redux, the school newspaper. The students published a story questioning the legitimacy of Corllins University, where Robertson got her degrees years ago — and the U.S. Department of Education agreed. Pittsburg journalism adviser Emily Smith said she was proud of her students: “They were not out to get anyone to resign or to get anyone fired. They worked very hard to uncover the truth.” But Robertson disagreed: “The current status of Corllins University is not relevant because when I received my MA in 1994 and my PhD in 2010, there was no issue,” she said. “I have no comment in response to the questions posed by PHS students regarding my credentials because their concerns are not based on facts.”
OFF A SHOW, OUT OF A JOB
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — When Jeff Varner decided to compete on the popular TV show Survivor, he probably wasn’t expecting to get kicked off the show — and to lose his job. But that’s the way it went down after the realtor “outed” rival Zeke Smith as transgender on one of the broadcasts. By confronting Smith, Varner had wanted to convey to others that there was deception going on, but host Jeff Probst asked Varner to leave the show. Varner later apologized for his actions, but that wasn’t enough for Allen Tate Realtors in Charlotte, N.C., which fired the 50-year-old employee because he was “in the middle of a news story that we don’t want anything to do with,” according to the Greensboro News & Record.