The Blotter

Another installment of The Blotter is here, where we take a look at some of the wildest, weirdest and most confusing crimes from around the world.

First, we are going back in time, because this story is something you’d see only in a Hitchcock film – seriously. In 1930, Carl Tanzer was working in a hospital when he fell madly in love with a tragic young woman who was dying of tuberculosis. After she died, Tanzer visited her grave frequently, giving her gifts and singing songs, until one night, he claims he heard her spirit asking him to take her home. So.. yeah he dug her out of the grave and took her home. But it gets weirder. Over a period of NINE years, he replaced her skin with silk, stuffed with rags to keep the shape of her body intact, and used perfumes to disguise the smell. He was eventually discovered after his lover’s sister stormed into the home with police but, too bad- the statute of limitations on his crime had lapsed, and Tanzer walked away a free man.

Speaking of Hitchcock, a bird was involved in a pretty salacious crime – but not for the reasons you might think. Bud, the gray parrot, was thought to have overheard the last moments of his murdered owners, when he was heard repeating the phrase, “Don’t f***ing shoot” in his owner’s voice. He also repeated what sounded like an argument between a man and a woman in their voice. According to witnesses, it sounded like the owner and his wife. The owner was killed and the wife was found, alive, with an attempted gunshot wound to the head. After a lengthy trial, the wife, Glenna Duram, was found guilty of the murder. Seems like the bird’s testimony might have had a little something to do with it.

Data roaming charges can really go through the roof, and is there anything worse than running out of data? Not according to one man out of Iowa City, who allegedly broke into his neighbor’s apartment to steal her Wi-Fi password. Apparently, the woman’s neighbor, Christopher Cummings, had previously asked for her password, which she had denied. Not cowed, he broke into her home through a window, and was then charged with third degree burglary. That has to be worse than data charges, right?

Desperation can be serious though. One woman, Carolyn Kesel, was arrested for alleged drunk driving after drinking… vanilla extract. She blew a whopping .26 upon her arrest, telling police that she had drank two full bottles of pure vanilla extract in a parking lot. For the record, vanilla extract has an alcohol content of over 40% in most cases – about the same amount as a good vodka or gin. Don’t try to give her the benefit of the doubt – maybe she’s just a sugar friend? False – this was her second DUI arrest. Besides, no one drinks vanilla extract on purpose for the fun of it.

Nobody likes tourists. But these two brought it to a whole other level. Two Welsh tourists got crazy drunk and stole a penguin, charmingly named Dirk, from Sea World in Australia. They also swam with the dolphins and let off a fire extinguisher in the shark enclosure (good thing they didn’t get those two mixed up). In a weird ‘Hang-Over’ type montage, the pair woke up the next morning with poor Dirk in their room, and tried to feed and shower him. They later released him in a canal, where the pair were luckily spotted by locals. The Welshmen had to pay a fine, and Dirk was returned to Sea World unharmed.

This was a fairly wild (pun intended) round of crimes this week. Look to next month to see where the craziest criminals take us.

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