The Coast News Group
Columns News of the Weird

News of the Weird


In the tony Denver suburb of Castle Rock, Colorado, the motto might be “If the house is rockin’, DO come knockin’!” Residents on Avery Way are in a tizzy about the Thunderstorm Play Palace, a 7,500-square-foot home where, neighbors told KDVR-TV, the owner invites swinging couples and singles to gather for wild sex parties. Invitees must make a “donation” ($70 for couples and single men, $20 for single women), and the parties include drinks, snacks and potluck dishes. “One had four crockpots,” said a neighbor, “showing up like they’re going to a Bunko party or something.” On the invitation, guests were asked to bring their own condoms and show respect for the “new furniture.” The host is a married father of three who feels harassed by the neighborhood, but he counters that he’s taken steps to be discreet, including installing soundproofing and making sure “there are no open areas.” But neighbors claim they hear “disturbing sounds” coming from the house. “You can hear people doing what they’re doing,” one resident told reporters. Castle Rock Police say the man is not breaking the law because he’s only taking donations, and the activities are contained to his home. [KDVR, 4/24/2018]

Do Not Climb!

The Black Panther isn’t feeling the love in South Korea lately. The Walt Disney Co. sent two statues of the superhero to Busan to celebrate Marvel Studios’ filming along Korea’s southern coast. But on March 17, according to The Korea Herald, a 32-year-old drunk man was arrested after he vandalized the statue in the Gwangbok-ro shopping district, and on April 21, the statue near Gwangalli Beach was toppled and part of its head broken off. An official from the Korea Film Council thought someone had probably tried to climb the statue, despite numerous off-limits signs. [Korea Herald, 4/23/2018]


— Police officers in the German town of Neustadt were called April 25 to an apartment building after reports of screaming led neighbors to suspect domestic violence, the Daily Mail reported. Instead, they found a couple receiving instruction in the Japanese art of Shibari erotic bondage from the apartment’s tenant. (“Shibari” translates as “the beauty of tight binding.”) In a statement titled “Fifty Shades of Neustadt,” police reported the couple were “well and in a good mood,” even asking the officers if they’d like to join in, but they had to decline. [Daily Mail, 4/26/2018]

— In the seaside village of Lytham St Annes, England, Douglas Cholmondley Travis, an 88-year-old member of the local Neighborhood Watch, was on patrol Oct. 10, 2017, when he and an 87-year-old watch colleague noticed a van turning into Lytham Park Cemetery. Regarding the vehicle as suspicious, they began taking pictures of it until Antony James, driver of the van, there only to visit family graves, grew angry and stopped, according to Metro News. James got out of his van to confront Travis, causing a panic, according to defense attorney Robert Castle, that resulted in James being knocked down by the Neighborhood Watch vehicle and Travis charged for reckless driving and assault. “This is all terribly sad,” Castle told Blackpool Magistrates Court in late April, as his client is “one of the eyes and ears of the police.” Travis was fined 40 pounds plus court costs. [Metro News, 4/30/2018]


Dolores Leis, 64, of Nanton in Galicia, Spain, is a modest wife and potato farmer. But thanks to the internet, she has found fame as “Trump’s Galician sister.” The Associated Press reports that a journalist researching farming posted a photo of Leis at her farm on Instagram, and the striking resemblance between her and the U.S. president caught the attention of the web. “I say that it must be because of the color of the hair,” Leis told La Voz de Galicia on April 24. She added that she’s not overwhelmed by the sudden attention because, unlike her doppelganger, she doesn’t use a mobile phone and isn’t much interested in online chatter. “I look at everything that my daughters show me, but it never stung my curiosity to have (a phone),” she said. [Associated Press, 4/25/2018]


Greyhound Bus passengers were frustrated on April 19 after their trip to New York was delayed by mechanical trouble and navigational challenges. The ride started in Cleveland, where the scheduled departure time was 2:30 a.m., passengers told WEWS-TV, but the bus didn’t leave until 6 a.m. After crossing into Pennsylvania, the bus turned around, and the driver explained he was returning to Cleveland because of mechanical difficulties. However, the driver missed Cleveland and drove all the way to Toledo before realizing the mistake and heading back to Cleveland. “We were on this bus for seven hours just going in a circle,” said passenger Morgan Staley. [WEWS TV, 4/20/2018]

Bathing News

— Evelyn Washington, 29, broke then crawled through a window in a Monroe, Louisiana, home on April 17, then settled into a warm bath with a bag of Cheetos and a large plate of food within reach on the toilet lid. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that when the homeowner returned from work around 5 p.m., she called police, who removed Washington to the Ouachita Correctional Center, where she told them “an unknown male told her to break into the victims’ residence.” [Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 4/18/2018]

— On April 4, a homeowner in the Longton area of Stoke-on-Trent, England, returned home to discover a man bathing in his tub and enjoying a cup of Oxo (broth), according to the BBC. When police arrived, the 36-year-old naked man tried to flee but was caught and arrested. The homeowner complained: “He ate me crisps, had five rounds of corned beef and sauce, ate a jar of pickles, had two ice creams and a can of Coke.” [BBC, 4/6/2018]

What’s in a Name?

A Planet Fitness customer in Saginaw Township, Michigan, was alarmed April 15 to find a Wi-Fi network named “remote detonator” while searching for an available connection. The gym manager evacuated the building and called police, who brought in a bomb-sniffing dog and declared the facility safe after a three-hour shutdown. Saginaw Township Police Chief Donald Pussehl told that people often choose odd names for their Wi-Fi networks, adding that one on his own street is called “FBI surveillance van.” [, 4/16/2018]

Crime Report

In October 1981, Stephen Michael Paris escaped from the Jess Dunn Correctional Center in Muskogee, Oklahoma, where he had been serving a nine-year sentence for drug possession and distribution. Using the name Stephen Chavez, Paris managed to evade authorities until April 12, when investigators tracked him down, thanks to his mother’s obituary, at an office in Houston where he was working. Now 58 years old, Paris was mentioned in his mother’s tribute, using his alias, the Associated Press reported, and after confirming his identity with fingerprints, the U.S. Marshals Service returned him to custody. [Associated Press, 4/12/2018]

New World Order

Jaywalkers, beware: The city of Daye, in Hubei province China, has installed water sprayers and an electronic screen at a crosswalk to stop people from crossing on a red light. Five pylons were placed along the road April 16, China Daily reported, three of which identify offenders using sensors and then spray them with water vapor. Other pylons “photograph people crossing against red lights,” explained Wan Xinqiang of the Daye public security bureau, and “a large electronic screen at the intersection will instantly display their photos. … If the equipment works well, we will utilize it throughout the city.” [China Daily, 4/20/2018]