Hurricane Makes Explosive Discovery

Residents of a Florida coastal community found something interesting in the wake of Hurricane Jeanne — a World War II-era missile, complete with live warhead, buried under a driveway.

"We have seen other bombs and depth charges wash up before, but that is unusual to find it underneath the driveway," Pat Schulke, who lives across the street in an unincorporated part of Indian River County (search), told the Vero Beach Press Journal.

The pounding waves generated by Jeanne washed away most of the beachfront driveway, revealing several feet of a rocket poking out of the sand, tail fins and all.

"[Bombs] have washed up in the past, but not usually found within a community," said Detective Joe Flescher from the county sheriff's office.

Experts from Patrick Air Force Base (search) up the coast identified the rocket as a "Tiny Tim," a 10-foot-long air-to-ground missile carrying a 500-pound bomb.

Flescher explained that 60 years ago, the barrier island opposite Vero Beach was a training ground for the U.S. military.

Ordnance disposal personnel from the Air Force base determined the warhead was live, and moved it elsewhere for detonation.

"It sounded like a large firework going off," said Lt. David Dangerfield of the Indian River County Fire-Rescue department, who was about half a mile away. "Dirt shot right up in the air, and I felt a minimum percussion from it. The bomb was live."

Surfer Gets Ride From Whale

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. (AP) — A surfer says the swell he was riding on a recent trip turned out to be more than just a wave — it was a whale.

Spyros Vamvas, a 60-year-old San Clemente therapist, felt the ocean swirl under him and was lifted up by the giant mammal.

"All of a sudden I just felt, wow, this huge noise and bump," said Vamvas, "and it lifted my board up. I'm looking down, and there's just swirling water and I see barnacles on the back of the whale. I'm used to dolphins. This was different. It was huge."

Witnesses at Lasuen Beach (search) last Monday morning began yelling.

"We were all screaming, 'Oh my God!"' said Mona Ferner, who was playing volleyball with her sister when she spied the whale.

Vamvas had no idea how big the whale was. Others on the beach guessed between 15 feet to 30 feet long, meaning the whale was likely a juvenile.

Vamvas, who has been surfing since he was 12, said the whale lifted him gently.

"I never changed position on my board," he said.

Those who saw the incident said that after setting Vamvas back onto the water, the whale turned and headed out toward the open sea.

"It looked like the whale was obviously spooked," said Marine Safety Capt. Bill Humphreys, one of several lifeguards on the beach.

The sight of the whale scared a number of surfers out of the water, Humphreys said.

Vamvas was the only one left in the surf line as the whale approached. Witnesses said he was looking out to sea in search of a wave and didn't appear to see the animal heading his way.

Vamvas said that his 6-foot, 10-inch surfboard wasn't damaged, though he did pinch the middle finger of his left hand between the whale and his surfboard.

Another Trash Collector, Another Cash Stash

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (AP) — Andrew Pritt has found some unique and valuable things while working as a trash collector, but none of them came close to the metal box he recently found under a trash bin.

Pritt, 51, of Mount Pleasant, found roughly $22,000 in the box under a rollout trash receptacle while working Monday in downtown Mount Pleasant, the Morning Sun reported.

When Pritt first found the box, he didn't think much of it and threw it in the back of his truck. But on his way back to Waste Management in Harrison, Pritt stopped at a rest area, popped open the box and was stunned to find the cash.

He called Mount Pleasant police and said he was headed back to the city to drop off the money.

After Pritt gave the money to police, officers looked at paperwork in the box and determined the money belonged to a city resident, Inspector Tom Forsberg said.

Pritt has found items of value before while on the job.

"I've found change," he said. "When I worked in Detroit, I found wallets and purses. Down there, it was an everyday thing."

Court Reporter Starts Happy Hour Early

MUSKOGEE, Okla. (AP) — A court reporter found herself on the other side of the law after failing a sobriety test at work.

Myrna Gay Parrish, 50, was booked into the Haskell County jail on complaints of misdemeanor public intoxication after finishing work in a judge's courtroom Monday, officials said.

Parrish was released Tuesday morning on a $200 bond, the standard fine for such charges, said Joe Denney, public information officer for Haskell County Sheriff's Department.

Parrish was arrested about 6 p.m. Monday after someone in an elevator with Parrish notified the sheriff's office they believed they smelled alcohol on her, Denney said.

"Parrish was brought down to the sheriff's office from the courthouse and given a field sobriety test. They determined she was intoxicated, and she was placed in the Haskell County Jail," Denney said.

Parrish, a temporary court reporter, had been in the courtroom of Special District Judge Farley Ward taking down information during a preliminary hearing.

Deputies returned to the courtroom for evidence and found a glass they believed was filled with vodka.

"They recovered a glass in which she was sipping a straw that smelled like pretty rank vodka," Denney said.

Man Makes Creative Contribution to Public Library

DECATUR, Ill. (AP) — Authorities have accused a rural Decatur man of adding mostly pornographic images to more than 250 videotapes he checked out of the library.

The tapes, which spanned a variety of topics, had pornography recorded into the one- to three-minute gap between the closing credits and the end of the tape, authorities said.

"In my 20-year career, there has always been vandalism, like pictures cut out of books, but never anything like this," city librarian Lee Ann Fisher said.

None of the tapes were children's videos, Decatur police Sgt. Steve Chabak said.

Randall Wells, 40, was arrested last week on charges of defacing library materials and criminal damage to property after police traced past users of the library's videos, said Chabak and Macon County State's Attorney Scott Reuter.

"To tell you the truth, I have never heard of that before but people's creative skills are amazing these days," said Bob Doyle, president of the Illinois Library Association.

Wells is free on $10,000 bond and is cooperating with the investigation, Chabak said.

Wells faces up to five years in prison on each charge that sticks against him if damage exceeds $300.

Frustrated Commuter Ticketed for Getting Home

NEW CANAAN, Conn. (AP) — A man who told police he wanted to avoid traffic gridlock has been ticketed for landing a helicopter in his back yard.

John Kjekstad, 42, told police he landed the chopper at home Thursday because he did not want to deal with the traffic on the Merritt Parkway (search), Sgt. Louis Gannon said Tuesday.

Kjekstad, who runs two helicopter and airplane charter companies, had planned to land his helicopter at Teterboro Airport (search) in New Jersey and drive home to New Canaan.

On his flight to Teterboro, Kjekstad told police he saw bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Merritt and chose to fly directly home instead.

Police received a phone call from a neighbor and issued Kjekstad a $75 ticket for violating a town ordinance prohibiting landing aircraft on residential property, Gannon said.

Compiled by's Paul Wagenseil.

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