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Good, Bad & The Ugly

Feb 16, 2012
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The good

Building on President Obama’s State of the Union address on supporting innovation and American companies, the Department of Energy recently announced the top three startup companies based on a public vote and an expert review. Out of the 14 participating in the “America’s Next Top Energy Innovator” challenge, Iowa Power Atomization Technologies (IPAT) was in the top three. IPAT is a start-up company based in Nevada that makes titanium powder with processes that are 10 times more efficient than traditional methods, significantly lowering the cost of the powder to manufacturers. Basically, IPAT’s innovation assists in the manufacturing of important things like artificial limbs for veterans, for example — in the small town of Nevada. That’s pretty cool.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recently awarded about $4.7 million to public housing authorities in Iowa that will be used to make major large-scale improvements to their public housing units, such as new roofs and energy-efficient upgrades that replace old plumbing and wiring. This will affect numerous housing authorities in Iowa, including $914,329 to the Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency and $158,879 to the Central Iowa Regional Housing Authority.

The bad

Big boobs won’t get you out of trouble. Florida resident Maureen Raymond, 49, was arrested last week after she failed a sobriety test. In a desperate attempt to catch a break, she tried to argue that she failed the test because her breasts were too big. According to police, an officer stopped Raymond for speeding and reckless driving. Raymond staggered out of the car and had slurred speech, glassy eyes and a strong odor of alcohol. When the officer advised Raymond to perform a field sobriety test, Raymond said she wouldn’t do well because “big breasts don’t balance well.” After the officer asked her to perform another test, Raymond began dancing, showed the officers her breasts and then began to undress. Officers took Raymond into custody and charged her with OWI and speeding.

Alcohol affects your judgment, we all know that, but a drunk driving incident that happened in Corning last week is an unfortunate combination of bad luck and stupidity (probably more of the latter). Jodie Hastings, 41, of Corning, allegedly crashed her vehicle into two others parked at the Adams County Sheriff’s Office — one belonging to the magistrate judge and the other owned by a dispatcher. Hastings was arrested and charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, possession of a controlled substance and driving without a valid driver’s license.

The ugly

South Carolina resident Tanya Lightsey, 27, was arrested last week after giving birth to a baby who tested positive for multiple drugs, including cocaine and opiates. When officers questioned her, Lightsey claimed the child tested positive because she had rubbed cocaine on her gums to alleviate the pain of a toothache. Officers weren’t buying it, because in 2010, Lightsey was investigated after giving birth to another child born with drugs in its system. Lightsey was arrested and charged with unlawful neglect of a child.

This guy’s kind of like Wylie Coyote, super evil genius, but without the genius part, (and his back-firing plot was neither natural nor cheeky, though loony definitely covers it). Florida resident Matthew Wong, 50, was hospitalized last week after he tried to set his wife on fire but instead burned himself. According to police, Wong was waiting at his estranged wife’s house, and when she came outside to leave for work, he tried to pour gas on her, but she fled to a neighbor’s house. Wong chased after her, spilling gas all over himself. When she got inside the house, Wong attempted to set the house on fire, but in the process caught himself on fire and became what witnesses described as a “walking ball of flames.” Witnesses put him out with blankets and a fire extinguisher. Wong was taken to the hospital with third-degree burns covering most of his body and is in critical condition. Maybe he should have tried an Acme anvil, instead. CV

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