Thursday Morning Bizarre News Headlines

STOLEN LIBRARY BOOKS

VISTA, Calif. (AP) -- Maria Nater faces a lot more trouble than just library fines. The San Diego County woman has pleaded guilty to stealing about 2,000 library books and DVDs. Prosecutors say she intended to resell the stolen books on Amazon.com. City News Service reports she's pleaded guilty to felony burglary. According to authorities, Nater had thousands of books on cooking, crafts and animals. Some of them were wrapped and ready to ship.

WANDERING DONKEY

BEND, Ore. (AP) -- Someone may be missing Shrek. That's what authorities in the Bend, Oregon, area are calling a miniature donkey found wandering last weekend. Deputies say the mini donkey looks like it had been well cared for, but may have been on the loose for some time. Officials are withholding additional details about Shrek, like its age and gender. They hope the information will help identify Shrek's owner.

GIANT LOBSTER

BOOTHBAY HARBOR, Maine (AP) -- It's a monster -- of a lobster. But a giant 27-pound lobster won't be going into a pot of boiling water. Maine shrimp fisherman Robert Malone caught the huge crustacean in his nets last week. Malone named it Rocky, and turned it over to the state Department of Marine Resources. Officials say the big guy will be set free. Rocky is big, but not the biggest lobster ever. The record was set by one caught off Nova Scotia, weighing more than 40 pounds. But compare the 27-pound Rocky to the typical one- or two-pounder that's served for dinner.

FREE FISHING

CUMBERLAND, Md. (AP) -- Fishing will be on the house -- or rather the state. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources wants a place in every county where people can fish for free. State fisheries director Tom O'Connell says the idea is to get folks hooked on fishing. An annual freshwater fishing license costs Maryland residents a little over 20 bucks. A bill being considered by state legislators would create the free fishing spots. O'Connell tells the Cumberland Times-News that the freebie fishing holes would have sunfish and bass. But people who want to go after trout in high-quality streams would still be required to have a license.

LOST BALLOON

GARDEN GROVE, Calif. (AP) -- That's no U-F-O -- just a high school science experiment that got away. A 30-foot-long balloon escaped from a class at Pacifica High in Orange County, California. An instructor tells a local paper (Orange County Register) that an advance placement class was testing a solar-heated balloon. It worked -- maybe a little too well. The balloon reached 1,500 feet in about 10 minutes, then headed south. There are no reports of the balloon causing any interference with commercial air traffic.

FREQUENT FLIER FANTASY CAMP

ABOARD AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHT 9454 (AP) -- It's like a fantasy camp for aviation geeks. Eric Mueller is one of those who jumped at a chance to go behind the scenes at American Airlines. He's runs a book review website in L-A. Mueller and his fellow passengers got a chance to visit American Airlines' flight attendant academy and practice evacuation procedures. The flight also visited Boeing's sprawling 737 factory, American's mission control-like operations center and the cockpit of the world's largest passenger jet. Tickets cost up to $1,699 each and sold out in 17 minutes.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


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