Man Snaps and Strips Over Bad Cell Service

Everyone gets frustrated with shoddy cell phone service, but a former college wrestler got so raving mad in a Verizon Wireless (search) store that he stripped naked to the waist and put on a pair of safety goggles, then threw phones and terrorized employees.

Jason Perala, 22, will spend 60 days behind bars for his temper tantrum, The Associated Press reported.

"I want to apologize; I'm sorry," Perala said after his sentencing. "I gotta change my ways a little bit."

He pleaded guilty Monday to felony criminal mischief and misdemeanor assault. He'll also have to pay a $1,200 fine and spend a year on probation.

Perala's outburst got so out of hand that store workers locked themselves in an office while he destroyed merchandise for several minutes.

The 5-foot-11, 200-pound former college wrestler said he had intended to only scream at the Verizon employees about his dissatisfaction with his wireless service.

But when he tried to throw his cell phone against a wall, it hit a worker in the shoulder. And so the rampage began.

Verizon said Perala's anger cost the company more than $20,000 in broken equipment and lost sales.

Perala, who before the May incident had no criminal record, was arrested three more times during the summer on charges relating to disorderly conduct. He received fines, unsupervised probation and suspended jail sentences in those cases.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

A Lovely Drive Through Target

There's nothing like going for an evening drive in your local Target (search) store.

But a Wilkes-Barre, Pa., man who did just that in a stolen Subaru Forester learned it's the kind of cruising that gets a guy arrested.

Patrick Tosh, 52, made his dramatic entrance when he crashed the vehicle through the front double glass doors of a Target in Stroud Township, Pa.

Instead of backing out of the store, Tosh drove around inside for a little while before leaving through another main entrance, The Associated Press reported. Police arrested him in a nearby parking lot a short while later.

No one was injured during the bizarre incident, which happened about 11 p.m. Friday night. There were roughly 40 employees in the Target when Tosh made his surprise appearance.

Tosh told police he did not remember anything about how he ended up driving the Subaru Forester, which was listed as stolen, Stroud Area Regional Police Detective Douglas Knowles said.

He was arraigned Saturday morning on charges including burglary, reckless driving, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief, and was not driving under the influence and had no known history of mental illness, Knowles said.

Employees said the store would be closed for several days while the damage is repaired.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Puppy Love Gone Wrong

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (AP) — Puppy love got a nurse in trouble.

Sandy O'Leary, 58, pleaded no contest to misdemeanor theft and was sentenced to 200 hours of community service for taking a cocker spaniel puppy from a car outside PetsMart (search).

O'Leary was arrested April 29 after taking the dog from its owner's Toyota Corolla. A witness wrote down O'Leary's license plate number after seeing her reach through a partially open car window, unlock the door and take the dog, investigators said.

"Stealing somebody's beloved pet is like taking a part of their family and is very different than simply taking property," prosecutor Jeff Rosell said. "If it wasn't for this concerned citizen who took down her license plate, there would have been no way to locate the defendant and the victim's dog."

O'Leary, who initially claimed to have acted out of fear that the heat inside the car would harm the puppy, had changed the dog's collar and told a deputy she found the dog running in the street.

Defense attorney Ben Rice submitted 26 letters in support of O'Leary to Superior Court Judge Michael Barton.

Giant Flying Squid — Oh My!

LONG BEACH, Wash. (AP) — When hundreds of giant squid washed up dead on the Long Beach Peninsula (search) last weekend, Dean Marsh knew exactly what to do: He stocked his freezer.

"No sense letting them go to waste," said the 57-year-old bait salesman, who planned to cut them up and sell them to fishermen.

An estimated 1,000 to 1,500 Humboldt jumbo flying squid — typically found off the coast of Mexico — have washed up on southwest Washington beaches in the past few days, said Greg Bargmann, a marine fish manager with the state Fish and Wildlife Department.

What's killing them isn't clear.

"They're like salmon: They spawn and then they die," Bargmann said. "I don't know if this is post-spawning, or if the waters got so cold they couldn't take it anymore."

Tuna fishermen first reported seeing the squid about 30 miles off the southwest Washington coast in August. At the time, the ocean water was significantly warmer than usual — 67 degrees, instead of 50 to 55 degrees.

Ever since, the squid have surprised anglers as far north as Sitka, Alaska. One salmon fisherman in British Columbia hauled in a 6½-foot, 44-pound squid this month — a specimen that's now in a formaldehyde tank at the Royal British Columbia Museum (search).

Some people have called Bargmann to ask if they can eat the dead squid they find on the beach.

"I sure wouldn't eat them. It would be like eating a deer on the side of the road," Bargmann said. "But if you catch them live they'd be good."

One Kidney Short

MARYSVILLE, Kan. (AP) — Eric Swim was surfing on the Internet in June when he stumbled across the story of a 10-year-old Jewish boy from Israel who was in desperate need of a kidney transplant.

"I began thinking that I have two good kidneys," the Marysville man said, "and I didn't have to have one of them."

Swim, 38, returned Sunday from Israel with one less kidney and the thanks of the many Israelis he met.

"It's a humbling thing when a Holocaust survivor comes up to you and says 'you're a big hero,' or 'gibor' in Hebrew," Swim said Monday during an interview at his home, "when in reality all I did was donate a kidney. It's very humbling."

The organ recipient, Moshiko Sharon, who had waited for a compatible kidney donor for more than a year, is doing well after undergoing implant surgery Sept. 21 at a Tel Aviv-area hospital.

But before the surgery could happen, Swim had to undergo tests to determine whether he would be a good match. Swim learned the results of the tests Sept. 3 and left three days later for Tel Aviv.

"I was doing my housekeeping work at the hospital when we got the call," said Swim, an employee at Community Memorial Healthcare Inc. in Marysville. "It was Labor Day weekend and the banks were shutting down, and they wanted us to leave for Israel on Labor Day. So we left, with four airline tickets we had bought at the last minute and $60 in our pockets."

Swim was joined by his wife Lori and the couple's two children, Lucy and Josiah, who are 10 and 6.

"So many bad things are going on these days that it is hard to look at the world and have any hope for children," said Lori Swim, 34. "If you want to have children see a better way, maybe saving one person's life will help us in the bigger scheme of things."

Swim was raised as a Missouri Synod Lutheran but he and his wife began studying Judaism several years ago and are considering converting. His wife, who has an education degree, home-schools the couple's children.

The organ donation was facilitated by the New York-based Halachic Organ Donor Society, which educates Jews about organ donation.

Compiled by's Catherine Donaldson-Evans.

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