Acting on an anonymous tip, authorities in Alabama's DeKalb County raided the Rainsville Wastewater Treatment Plant on Dec. 17 and discovered a large illegal winemaking operation that appeared to have been in operation for a long time, reported WHNT. The next day, plant supervisor Allen Maurice Stiefel, 62, of Fyffe, was charged with unlawful possession of illegally manufactured alcohol and suspended without pay, according to Rainsville Mayor Rodger Lingerfelt. The operation was found in a little-used building at the plant, where, Lingerfelt said, "Things happen like that." The sale of alcohol had been illegal in Rainsville until the City Council passed an ordinance approving it in September.
No open-door policy
As a Delta flight en route to Atlanta began to taxi away from the gate at La Guardia Airport in New York on Dec. 21, passenger Brian Plummer noticed a man and woman with a service dog changing seats several times on the less-than-full plane, he told the New York Times, and heard the man say, "If I sit down, I'll freak out." Plummer soon felt the plane come to a stop, and flight attendants revealed why: The man, 31-year-old Antonio Murdock of Florida, had forced open an emergency exit door, causing a slide to activate, and picking up the dog, slid down to the ground with the woman, Brianna Greco, 23, according to a complaint filed in Queens Criminal Court, where the two were arraigned on a number of mischief and endangerment charges. "This doesn't happen every day at the airport," said Lenis Valens, a spokesperson for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. No one was injured, but the flight was delayed for hours.
Hazardous online shopping
Andrea Ellis of East Moline, Ill., was wrapping presents on Dec. 19 when she opened a package of garden flags she intended to give her grandmother and noticed something extra in the bottom of the padded envelope. It turned out to be a biohazard bag containing a Virginia woman's COVID-19 test. Ellis told the Quad City Times that when she failed to reach the woman, she called police, who sent an officer to retrieve it, but 15 minutes later, he returned with the bag, saying, "I was told to bring it back to you." A representative of the Rock Island County Health Department picked up the sample the next day and will try to return it to the Virginia patient. Ellis has also heard from a vice president at Kohl's, where she bought the flags, who said the company is working to find out what happened and prevent it from happening again.
Tunnel of love
Police were called to a home in Tijuana, Mexico, to break up a fight that broke out after a man identified only as Jorge discovered a tunnel leading from his home to that of a neighbor, Alberto, who had been having an affair with Jorge's wife. Trouble began, reported the Daily Mail, when Jorge arrived home early from work and surprised his wife and Alberto, a bricklayer who was also married. Alberto hid behind a couch before disappearing down the tunnel, which appeared in photos to be professionally constructed. Jorge followed Alberto down the tunnel, eventually confronting him in Alberto's house.
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