Denver sheriff's deputies are basically Super Troopers, minus the movie ending
According to an investigation by The Denver Post, "the Denver Sheriff Department has deep-rooted issues within its organizational culture."
That is the understatement of the year.
A review of disciplinary letters issued since January 1, 2013, uncovered a trail of ineptitude that reads like a comedy, but unfortunately, is very real. One deputy lost a gun in a McDonald's bathroom. Another allowed inmates to watch YouTube videos on her computer and take cigarettes from her purse. Two other jail employees got into a fight over a day-old cupcake, chasing each other through the hallways and hurling curses.
Perhaps most notable, though, is the deputy who mistakenly allowed an inmate to leave the jail while he searched Craigslist for auto parts and munched on corn flakes. When he realized what had happened, the deputy got into his own car and patrolled the area, returning with a person who turned out not to be the on-the-lam inmate. That career criminal was luckily re-captured the following day.
The department recently appointed a new sheriff, Elias Diggins, to turn things around. Check out the Post's full story, and then debate just how futile Diggins' attempts may prove.
The NFL is finally launching a YouTube channel
For years, as other professional sports leagues made highlight reels and clips readily available for fans to consume online, the NFL maintained a tight grip on its video stash. That will soon change, as the NFL on Monday announced it would be launching a YouTube channel to host game action, interviews, and clips from the NFL Network.
The move is part of a broader multimillion dollar deal with Google, which owns YouTube, that will give the tech giant the right to host the NFL Network. Under the deal, Google will also prominently feature NFL videos in its search results.
IRS insists living man is dead — but still takes his money
Siegfried Meinstein of Upper Arlington, Ohio, is 94 years old, but he is definitely still alive. But since April of last year, the IRS has insisted the World War II vet is dead, despite all evidence to the contrary, including the eyewitness account of an IRS agent.
Originally the Meinstein family thought the problem may have originated with the Social Security Administration, which mistakenly decides about 1,000 people are dead each year. Yet though the SSA is actually well aware that Meinstein is still alive, the IRS refuses to back down. In the meantime, the agency continues to cash Meinstein's checks.
"If they keep insisting, what is it you say?" said Meinstein's son, Ron. "'Eventually, they'll be right?'"
BLS: Texas is responsible for most new jobs since 2007
Employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Texas Workforce Commission indicates that Texas alone is responsible for the net job growth of the last seven years. While the other 49 states plus the District of Columbia have seen a 0.2 percent decline in available employment, Texas has added more than 1.4 million new positions:
While the oil industry has contributed significantly to the job boom in Texas, other areas of work — like construction, finance, mining, and office work — are surging in the Lone Star State.
Study: Many breast cancer patients don't understand the disease
A new study from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston found that many breast cancer patients don't understand what, exactly, the disease's characteristics are.
The study, published Monday in the journal Cancer, surveyed 500 women with breast cancer. The researchers found that only 20 to 58 percent of the women understood the tumor stage, grade, and type of tumor with which they were diagnosed. African-American and Hispanic women in particular didn't correctly identify their tumor characteristics.
Rachel Freedman, author of the study, said that patients not understanding breast cancer makes it harder for them to follow their treatment plans and make informed medical decisions. Freedman noted that the study "identified a critical need for improved patient education and provider awareness" about breast cancer.
Secret Service hunting for suspects after quadcopter drone crashes on White House lawn
The Secret Service has confirmed that a small drone quadcopter crashed inside the White House compound early Monday morning.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) January 26, 2015
The administration is searching for suspects or a motive, but White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest says the incident "does not pose any sort of ongoing threat." President Obama is in India as part of an international swing.
The incident comes one month after a report faulted the Secret Service for a range of lax behavior and called for the construction of a taller fence around the White House.
Restoration work reveals seat numbers at Rome's Colosseum
The ancient Romans may not have had the ease of StubHub, but a new discovery has revealed that even the Colosseum had organized seat numbers.
The Colosseum is currently undergoing a $33 million restoration to repair the damage it's endured over the last 2,000 years. During the restoration work, curators discovered traces of red paint numbers on the entrance gate arches.
— Archaeology Magazine (@archaeologymag) January 23, 2015
The numbers are "similar to today's stadium seating systems," according to Discovery News. Researchers believe the Romans used red paint so the numbers would be visible from a distance. The seating plan regulated the Colosseum's 76 public entrances and four levels of seating.
"The 50,000 spectators had a ticket that said which numbered gate arch they were supposed to enter," monument director Rossella Rea explained to Discovery News. "Inside the arena, there were other numbers to help people access their seats, which were assigned according to social class."
A majority of Americans think God rewards pious athletes
Most Americans are inclined to have literal faith in a Hail Mary pass, according to a new survey from the Public Religion Research Institute.
In the poll, 53 percent of Americans (and 56 percent of sports fans) said they believed God "rewards athletes who have faith with good health and success." More specifically, about one-quarter said they think God plays a direct role in determining which team wins a given sporting event.
Yasiel Puig (pictured below) would seem to agree. —Jon Terbush
Malaysia Airlines website hacked by ISIS supporters
Malaysia Airlines confirmed Monday that its website had been "compromised," but it said that no customer data was at risk.
On Sunday night, the website displayed the message "ISIS will prevail" and a fake "404" page reading "Plane not Found." Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared last March, has yet to be found.
— Sky News (@SkyNews) January 26, 2015
Other "404" messages on the site featured a lizard wearing a top hat and a monocle. The "Lizard Squad" hacker group, which refers to itself as the "Cyber Caliphate," has taken responsibility for the attack on Malaysia Airlines' website. The Lizard Squad Twitter account accused Malaysia Airlines of "lying," saying that customer data had indeed been compromised.
Malaysia Airlines released a statement on its Facebook page asserting that "user data remains secured."
French court forbids parents from naming daughter 'Nutella'
A French court has ruled that a couple's decision to name their child "Nutella" was "contrary to the child's interest." The court also ruled the same for another child who had been named "Strawberry."
The Valenciennes court renamed the child formerly known as "Nutella," giving her the name "Ella" when her parents failed to show up at a court date in November. The baby was born in September, according to French newspaper La Voix Du Nord.
The court noted that "Nutella" is "the trade name of a spread," and naming a child "Nutella" would "only lead to teasing or disparaging thoughts."
Kurdish forces now control 90 percent of Kobani, activists say
Islamic State militants have been almost completely pushed out of the strategically and symbolically important Syrian border city of Kobani, according to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) have fought their way into Kobani's Maqtalah neighborhood, and now control at least 90 percent of the city, the monitoring group said Monday. The long battle for Kobani has pitted ISIS against the YPG and Iraqi Kurds, plus other Syrian rebel groups and U.S.-led airstrikes.