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Good, Bad & The Ugly

May 10, 2012
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The good

More than 700 volunteers came together last weekend for one of the largest community efforts in town, the 17th Annual Rebuilding Together Day, organized by Rebuilding Together Greater Des Moines. Volunteers made home repairs and improvements to a total of 40 homes in Greater Des Moines at no cost to low-income homeowners, families and military veterans. The efforts were also supported by local companies and organizations that together raised about $100,000 toward the project, including: Wells Fargo, Polk County Housing Trust Fund, NCMIC, Waukee Rotary, Bank of the West, First American Bank, Bank of America, Praxair, Booz Allen Hamilton, Hubbell Realty, Storey Kenworthy, Ryan Companies, R & R Realty, Firestone and Sears.

More than 100 educators, friends and family unveiled a new memorial last weekend as a tribute to Iowa teachers and their outstanding service to students. It’s the 47th memorial and first to honor teachers on the Capitol grounds. The Teacher Memorial rests on the northwest terrace, at the corner of the Capitol Complex across from the Historical and Wallace buildings on Grand Avenue. The granite boulder bears one word: “TEACHER.” Private donations for the memorial were collected from members of the Iowa Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (IAHPERD).

The bad

Analise Garner, of Illinois, was arrested last week after she attacked her mother and the family dog. Yes, the family dog. According to police, Garner, 19, had returned home early on Sunday morning after a weekend of drinking and got into an argument with her mother. Garner continued arguing, which led to her scratching her mother and biting her hand. Garner then attacked the family dog, biting it three times on the back before it attacked her. She was charged with animal cruelty, domestic battery and underage drinking. The dog was not charged for its retaliation. Now, who’s the bitch?

The five men accused of plotting the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the U.S. were officially charged on Saturday with crimes of murder and terrorism. Confessed mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other defendants deferred their pleas to a later date. The special military tribunal charged them with “conspiracy, attacking civilians, murder and violation of the law of war, destruction, hijacking, terrorism.” If found guilty, the men face the death penalty for their roles in the attacks that killed 2,976 people. The trial could still be years away, unless Mohammed pleads guilty, making himself a “martyr” for al Qaeda.

The ugly

Don’t cross this lady. Dallas, Texas, resident Cristal Richardson, 28, was arrested last week after she cut off a man’s penis and then stabbed him to death. A motel security guard called police after he encountered Richardson walking down the hallway naked and covered in blood. Officers arrived on the scene and found the deceased victim inside Richardson’s room. He had been repeatedly stabbed, his throat was cut and his penis and scrotum were also cut off. Richardson was arrested on murder charges.

This goes beyond motherly love — disgustingly way beyond. Napa, Calif., resident Mistie Atkinson, 32, was arrested last week after she was discovered having a sexual relationship with her 16-year-old biological son. According to police, Atkinson, who had no custody rights to the boy, began sending him nude photos of her, and the two exchanged sexually explicit messages and talked about running away together. Police arrested Atkinson after they found her in a hotel room with the boy. Police later found videos on the boy’s phone that showed Atkinson performing oral sex and engaging in sexual intercourse with him. Atkinson was arrested and charged with incest, oral copulation of a minor, contact with a minor for a sexual offense and sending harmful matter to a minor. CV

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