Richards' Auction Gallery had one interesting item up for sale this week just in time for Halloween: A real human skeleton.
The bones, wired together to keep them in place, were sold for $500 Tuesday. The winning bidder then donated the skeleton — believed to be that of a European man — to a forensics center for research.
Auctioneer Tim Richards found the skeleton among furniture and boxed items he collected from New Castle for the auction. The bones had apparently been someone's macabre decoration.
Tipton County Coroner Bob Nichols, after discussing the find with Richards, contacted University of Indianapolis forensic anthropologist Andrea Simmons, who examined the remains Friday.
Simmons concluded the skeleton was that of a European man who was between 5-foot-3 and 5-foot-5 62 inches. Simmons told Mattingly the man died sometime before World War I and was not murdered.
Simmons suggested that the skeleton be donated to research instead of being used for a Halloween prop, but Richards already had advertised that it would be sold.
Jane Harper then made the purchase and donated it to the forensics laboratory at the University of Indianapolis.
"I just felt very strongly this person needed to be in a final resting place," Harper said. (AP)
Robbers Leave Loot After Getaway Car's Too Small
Two armed robbers hijacked a security van with $1.3 million inside but were forced to abandon more than half the cash because their small getaway car could not carry it all, Malaysian police said Tuesday.
The robbers and their compact getaway car were still at large with $524,000 following Monday's heist near Kuala Lumpur, district police chief Shakaruddin Che Mood said.
The robbers stole a small car then held up guards in the security van at a shopping mall. One robber drove the van away and the other followed in the car, Shakaruddin said.
The van was recovered nearby with nine bags containing $786,000 inside — evidently because the bags did not fit in the compact car, the police chief said.
"The bags are quite big. I consider them quite stupid. Their planning was very shortsighted," Shakaruddin said. (AP)
A Christian book publisher says its next edition of the Bible will be handwritten by more than 31,000 Americans.
Zondervan is kicking off a 90-city, 15,000-mile cross-country tour Tuesday to mark the 30th anniversary of its popular New International Version translation of the book.
The tour will stop at special events, churches and U.S. landmarks to allow people to write out Bible verses.
The collection of handwritten verses will be published and sold after the tour ends in San Diego on Feb. 12.
The Michigan-based publisher says most verses will be written by regular people, although the company hopes to collect a few from President George W. Bush, the Rev. Billy Graham and others. (AP)
Read more: USA Today
Lawyer Gets Twin to Cover Her Cases
It was double trouble for a set of Italian twins.
An overbooked lawyer and part-time judge who didn’t want to miss out on legal fees is in a heap of legal trouble after she had her twin sister take her place in court.
When the woman — identified only as Gabriella – was called to be a substitute judge, she dispatched her twin sister, who is not a lawyer, to a prior legal engagement as a defense attorney. The clients figured out the sister was not Gabriella, and are now suing both sisters for damages.
The twins were charged with fraud.
Read more: Reuters
Diaper Fashion Show Hits the Catwalk
One after the other, the models strutted across the stage to bouncy '80s dance tunes, all showing off designs of the same article of clothing — adult diapers.
Japan has one of the world's most rapidly aging societies, and the fashion show Thursday proved the country's diaper producers are intent on keeping the elderly clean and dry.
"Diapers are something that people don't want to look at," said Kiyoko Hamada of the Aging Lifestyle Research Center, a leading organizer of the show.
"But if you make them attractive, then people can learn about them more easily," she said.
A survey by The Nikkei, Japan's leading business newspaper, showed sales of adult diapers have more than doubled over the past decade, reaching an estimated $500 million this year.
Speakers blared oldie hits such as "Relax" by Frankie Goes to Hollywood as models jaunted on the stage with diapers pulled on over black tights. (AP)
Political Stunt Gone Wrong
What started as a publicity stunt to get more votes wound up costing a Thailand gubernatorial candidate a staffer's life.
Underdog candidate Leena Jangjanya said her 32-year-old campaign manager Thirasak Sitanont drowned Thursday as she and other staff members were warning journalists of the crisis of residents who don't have access to clean water.
Some members of Leena's staff were bathing in a Bangkok canal to show the rashes they got from bathing in the filthy water.
"One of my staff saw him waving and crying for help, but we thought he was pretending and he was far away from us, posing for two TV crews," Leena said through tears.
Read more: Reuters
Naked Clown Calendar
Bozo in the buff — all year long!
Seeking to raise money for MS research, 16 graduates from the Clown Conservatory have unveiled its 2009 naked clown calendar, which features the jolly jokesters posing in nothing but their birthday suits.
The proceeds from the calendar benefit the Judy Finelli Fund, which supports research and advocacy for cures and treatment of MS.
Read more: NakedClownCalendar.com.
Smashing Pumpkins in Style
One New Jersey farm has a special attraction to go with the season's hay rides and corn mazes: giant pumpkin catapult.
A group of middle school students who became obsessed with the medieval weapon asked northern New Jersey farmers Anthony and Heidi Lentini if they could use physics to fling the big orange squash.
The couple, who have corn mazes on their Newton farm to attract customers, agreed.
The half dozen boys, farmers and a technology teacher from Halsted Middle School began work in August and finished building the giant catapult this weekend.
It cost about $1200. The Lentinis paid for construction. (AP)
Read more: The Star-Ledger
Dead Animal Prank Leads to Arrest
Police have arrested a 20-year-old man on suspicion of stealing dead animals from a veterinary hospital morgue and stuffing them into empty lockers at a Bay Area high school.
Police say the man admitted that he took the bodies of two cats and a 25-pound dog from an unlocked freezer behind the VetCare Hospital in Dublin. He said he then put the dead animals in lockers at Dublin High School before classes started Aug. 25.
The man told police he thought it was a practical joke.
The man was arrested at his Pleasanton home Friday afternoon arrested on suspicion of grand theft, tampering with school property and improper disposal of animals. (AP)
Compiled by FOXNews.com's Tom Durante.
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