Ohio Man Jonesin’ to Get Out of Jury Duty

Some people will do anything to get out of jury duty.

An Ohio man spent a night in jail after claiming to be a heroin addict and a killer to avoid being chosen for jury duty in a death penalty case, the Associated Press reports.

Benjamin Ratliffe stated he had a "bad jonesin' for heroin" in a questionnaire given to potential jurors. In response to whether he’d ever fired a weapon, Ratliffe wrote: "Yes. I killed someone with it, of course. Right."

Ratliffe, 21, of Columbus was charged with contempt of court and obstruction of justice. On Thursday he apologized to Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Julie M. Lynch.

"He didn't try to defend his responses, and he lied under oath and he was insubordinate," said Lynch, who removed Ratliffe from the jury pool and dismissed the charges against him.

"You do not make a mockery of the process."

Thief Foots Bill Before Running Away With Man's Shoes

A man using a public phone in Australia was approached over the weekend by another man who forced him to give up his shoes and then left a $50 tip, ABC News Online reports.

The 20-year-old was in Melbourne’s central business district on Sunday when another man forced him at knifepoint to surrender his footwear.

The thief then left behind his own shoes and $50 in the phone box before running off.

Police say the trainers are worth more than $300.

Cop Mistakes Gun for Taser; Tree-Climber Pays Price

BREMERTON, Wash. (AP) – A Kitsap County sheriff's deputy in Washington state is on administrative leave after mistakenly pulling a gun instead of a Taser and shooting a man who was in a tree and refused to come down, authorities said.

The five-year veteran meant to fire the Taser and not his gun on Thursday but grabbed the wrong weapon, sheriff's office spokesman Scott Wilson told the Kitsap Sun.

The deputy was responding to a report of a man in his 20s who reportedly was wearing only underwear and talking to himself in a fig tree. He appeared drunk or mentally ill, police said. Deputies were trying to get him down after several hours.

The bullet wounded the man in a leg and he was flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle in satisfactory condition.

Deputies carry both a Taser, or stun gun, and a gun in their utility belts.

The shooting is under investigation by State Patrol detectives, Wilson said.

Deputies and Bremerton Fire and Rescue personnel were called to the scene after an employee of a local business reported the man had climbed the tree and was acting strangely. The man had been in the tree and talking to himself when one employee arrived at work at 7:30 a.m.

Deputies and rescue personnel attempted to coax the man from the tree for almost two hours before he was shot. During that time, the man was becoming increasingly hostile toward rescue personnel and deputies trying to get him out of the tree, witness David Blakeslee told the newspaper.

Deputies were unsure whether the man was intoxicated, on drugs, or experiencing a psychotic episode. They wanted to get him down before he hurt himself or others, Wilson said.

One deputy attempted to discharge a Taser at the man, but when it did not work asked another deputy to fire a Taser. Instead of grabbing the Taser, the deputy grabbed and fired the gun, Wilson said.

Blakeslee, an employee with nearby B&B Auto Repair, described the man's reaction to getting shot.

"He said, 'Ow, that hurt, I'm coming down, I'm coming down,"' Blakeslee said.

The man climbed down the tree on his own where medical personnel were waiting, Blakeslee said.

The sheriff's office is reviewing its firearms and Taser training.

Employee Fired for Sleeping on Customer's Couch

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Comcast Corp. has fired an employee for sleeping on a customer's couch during a house call after video of the incident became a minor Internet sensation.

Philadelphia-based Comcast also said in a statement that it had apologized to customer Brian Finkelstein of Washington, D.C., for the "unsatisfactory customer experience."

Finkelstein posted video of the sleeping technician and told this story on YouTube.com, a site that lets users share videos:

His Comcast Internet connection had worked only intermittently since he moved to a new apartment June 1. A Comcast employee who came to Finkelstein's home June 14 to replace the modem called the company for help. Put on hold for more than an hour, he caught some shuteye while he waited.

Finkelstein, a Georgetown University law student, picked up his video camera, added an Eels song with the lyrics "I need some sleep," and sent it to YouTube.

The 58-second video has been viewed more than 227,000 times since it was posted last week. Finkelstein's service has since been fixed.

Gator Causes Scare in N.Y. Neighborhood

LINDENHURST, N.Y. (AP) — Police in a Long Island village nabbed an unusual suspect on Monday — with a long tail, powerful jaws, sharp teeth and a family rap sheet that stretches back millions of years.

The alligator was sitting on a Lindenhurst man's front lawn when he went out to get his paper Monday morning. At the sight of the homeowner, the gator ran to hide in the hedges.

Suffolk County police officers used a dog-catching noose to collar the animal.

The homeowner helped police, grabbing the 3-foot-long gator by its tail and pulling it out of the hedges. Its mouth was then duct-taped shut.

The alligator was taken to the BTJ's Jungle Pets & Aquarium in West Islip for safekeeping, but authorities later removed it Saturday afternoon.

BTJ owner Tom Niehoff said the gator was healthy and docile, and was probably somebody's pet.

Authorities don't know where it came from, but owning an alligator violates state law, said Roy Gross, chief of the Suffolk County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Gross also believed the alligator was probably a pet. He said its owner, if found, could be charged with allowing a wild animal to endanger the public, a misdemeanor.

"This is not the type of pet people should own," Gross said. "Stick to dogs and cats and birds. It's a very dangerous animal."

Gross said the Suffolk County SPCA was taking care of the reptile. On Monday, Gross said, the alligator would be transported to a herpetologist in Massachusetts.

Click in the box above to watch video of the alligator.

Compiled by FOXNews.com's Heather Scroope.

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