Skating thief on the loose
Police were on the lookout on Wednesday for a rollerblading criminal who robbed a woman while she waited in her car at a fast food restaurant's drive-through lane. The woman told investigators in the Vancouver suburb of Burnaby that the man rolled up to her car window on in-line skates late on Tuesday, brandished a knife and demanded cash. She complied and the man skated away with the money. "The female victim clearly remembers that this male smelled strongly of liquor," the Royal Canadian Mounted Police also noted in a press release.
■ United Kingdom
Murder sparks sales spree
Sales of a violent video game, linked to the brutal murder of a British teenager, were soaring on Thursday across the UK as buyers rushed to buy their copy before the game is banned. Publicity surrounding the Manhunt game has sparked a consumer frenzy in the UK, with copies flying off the shelves in stores where it is still available. Many multi-media retailers withdrew the game from their stores last week in the wake of media coverage about the murder of 14-year-old Stefan Pakeerah, killed in February by his friend, Warren Leblanc, 17, who was said to be obsessed with the game.
■ United States
`Lez' in Scrabble shocker
It wasn't a four-letter word, but it was close enough to cause a stir at the National Scrabble Championship in New Orleans. In the final round on Thursday, eventual champion Trey Wright played the word "lez," which was on a list of offensive words not allowed during the tournament. Normally, no word is off-limits, but because the games were being taped for broadcast on cable sports channel ESPN, certain terms had been deemed inappropriate, including the three-letter slang for lesbian. "There are words you just can't show on television," Scrabble Association executive director John Williams said.
■ United States
Hiker drives off bear with ax
Officials closed a back-country area of Denali National Park in Alaska after a hiker told rangers he had driven off an attacking grizzly bear by burying his ice ax in the animal's back. Park Service spokeswoman Kris Fister said Roberto Cataldo, 29, of Modena, Italy, reported the encounter on Monday. A 130km2 tract where Cataldo said he had hiked was closed indefinitely. Fister said much of what he told rangers has not been corroborated, but the park had to take protective measures. A wounded bear "poses a threat to anyone going into the area," she said on Thursday.