Great Moments in Capital Punishment: Prosecutors in Portland, Ore., took the death penalty off the table for Tremayne Durham in July, accepting a minimum-30-year prison term for an “aggravated murder” over a business deal. Durham agreed to plead guilty when prosecutors relented to his additional demand of two pig-out meals (featuring KFC, Popeye’s and Haagen Dazs right away, and pizza and lasagna on the day the judge accepts the plea). Prosecutors said they hated appearing to cater to the whims of a murderer, but eyeing the expense of a long trial and lengthy appeals, as well as the turmoil for the victim’s family, they agreed. In August, the judge accepted the deal.]

CAN’T POSSIBLY BE TRUE
    Though it has been on national cable TV since mid-July, ratings have not been spectacular for the G4 channel’s show, Hurl!, leaving many Americans unaware of precisely how far standards of taste have fallen. Hurl! contestants are forced to gorge themselves, then are purposely, rapidly, twirled and shaken on carnival-type rides, with the last player to retain his stomach contents declared the winner. Wrote a Washington Post reviewer, it’s “for people who found Fear Factor much too nuanced.”

TOO BUSY PARENTS
    A Dallas entrepreneur recently created a programmable device for those busy, busy parents who actually need to be reminded that they brought their tots with them in the car (lest their child become one of the several hot-car deaths a year in America). Provided that they’re not too busy to set the system up, an alarm alerts them if they exit the car without the baby. Said one Texas woman interviewed by NBC News, “As a mom, you can get really distracted.”

OH YEAH, TOUGH GUYS!
    Lamont Cooke was arrested by a SWAT team in Vernon, Conn., in July after spending the last year on the run from Philadelphia and Maryland authorities, who wanted him for charges of kidnapping and murder. According to the arresting U.S. marshal, Cooke surrendered quietly, except that he wet his pants.
    A police task force in Orem, Utah, arrested a 21-year-old gang member in June, catching him riding a tricycle that he had just stolen from a little girl.

COPYRIGHT 2008 CHUCK SHEPHERD
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