Gun surprises teacher
Police have arrested a man after a teacher in his son’s school shot a chair in the staffroom with the father’s revolver, officials and reports said yesterday. Staff at the junior high school in Shime confiscated the weapon from the boy on Wednesday last week, believing it to be a dummy, and kept it in the communal office. The unidentified teacher, who reportedly thought the gun was a fake, fired it at the furniture on Saturday, broadcaster NHK and Kyodo News said. Officers arrested the boy’s father on suspicion of possessing a revolver and several bullets in violation of the Firearms and Swords Control Law, a police spokesman said.
Man bitten by tiger
A man was rushed to hospital yesterday after being bitten on the neck by a tiger at Australia Zoo, run by the family of late “Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin. The man, believed to be a trainer at the zoo north of Brisbane, was in a serious condition. Reports said the man was found with two puncture wounds to his neck and was breathing and conscious. The Australia Zoo is a 40-hectare facility on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast made popular by Irwin, who starred in the hugely successful wildlife documentary series The Crocodile Hunter.
Roof collapse kills nine
A roof collapse probably caused by a blizzard has killed nine people at a food processing factory, state media and an official said yesterday. The nine people were killed during the lunchtime collapse at the plant in Mudanjiang City in Heilongjiang Province on Monday, Xinhua news agency reported. Citing emergency officials, Xinhua said the collapse probably was caused by blizzards. A man from the local emergency response office confirmed the report, and said the plant was a food processing factory. He declined to identify himself, as is common with Chinese officials. Xinhua said local authorities are preparing to carry out a safety check across the city following heavy snowfall. Snow has closed roads and led to flight cancelations in the northeast this week.
Phone thief returns numbers
A thief painstakingly wrote out 11 pages of telephone numbers from a stolen iPhone and sent them to the owner, Xinhua said on Monday. The pickpocket is believed to have taken the Apple handset from Zou Bin when they shared a taxi, Xinhua said. Zou had nearly 1,000 contact numbers in the device and with no backup copy — like millions of other people around the world — he was more concerned about losing the data than the telephone itself, it added. “I know you are the man who sat beside me. I can assure you that I will find you,” he said in a text message to the thief. “Look through the contact numbers in my mobile and you will know what trade I am in... Send me back the phone to the address below if you are sensible.” The tone of the message was unmistakably threatening — Zou works in the pub industry, which is widely held to have links with gangs. Days later he received a parcel containing his SIM card and 11 pages of handwritten contact numbers, Xinhua said, adding that he was “fossilized” by the result — a Chinese colloquialism for astonished. “It would take a while to write from one to 1,000, let alone names and a whole string of digits. I suppose [the thief’s] hand is swelling,” Zou was quoted as saying.
Pensioner opens zoo