News and Blues


Curses, Foiled Again
Police investigating a burglary in Lake Worth, Fla., identified Derek Codd, 19, as their suspect because he left his cellphone at the scene, and his mother called. Investigators answered and asked the woman whose phone it was. They then arrested Codd and Kristen Rynearson, 19, with the stolen goods. (South Florida Sun Sentinel)

When Guns Are Outlawed

  • Police arrested Cara Claffy, 35, after her mother, Sheryl Claffy, 60, reported that she was watching television in their Albuquerque, N.M., home when the two got into an argument. At one point, the daughter “grabbed an electric vibrator” and struck her on the head with it. (The Smoking Gun)
  • Police arrested Christine O’Keefe, 53, after her daughter, Jessica Caldwell, 25, reported that the mother smacked her in the face with “a used diaper.” (The Smoking Gun)

Mother of the Year
Authorities accused Quacheena Juett, 33, of ordering her 12-year-old daughter to beat a driver pumping gas at a station in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., who was taking up too much room at a gas pump, preventing Juett from getting gas. According to the police report, after Randa St. Cyr told Juett to wait until she finished, the mother told her daughter to “take care of it,” and the girl punched the victim in the face. Juett and her daughter then hopped into St. Cyr’s car, grabbed St. Cyr’s iPhone and took off. Authorities used the gas station’s surveillance system and the phone’s GPS to locate Juett. (South Florida Sun Sentinel)

Incendiary Devices
Authorities charged Oklahoma mother Shana Suggs, 25, with child abuse after she poured gasoline over her 5-year-old daughter’s head to treat head lice. According to an affidavit filed in Pittsburg County District Court, a space heater ignited the gasoline and burned the girl and Suggs, who faces a life sentence. (Oklahoma City’s KWTV-TV)

Filial Duty
When authorities circulated surveillance photos of a woman robbing a bank in Michigan’s Byron Township, wearing a bright red T-shirt with a large American flag on the front, a man notified police that the robber was his mother. The FBI said Dee Ann Sanders, 53, admitted handing a teller a note demanding $2,500 for her children and grandchildren. She got $1,092. Her son got nothing. (Associated Press)

When Duct Tape Isn’t Enough
The FBI charged Jennifer Marie Vargas, 34, with assault after she nearly pulled off her 6-year-old son’s genitals because she was angry with him. According to the criminal complaint affidavit filed in San Antonio, Texas, Vargas cleaned the wound with alcohol and then “applied superglue to the scrotum until the bleeding stopped, stuffed his underwear with paper towels, and then told him to go to bed.” When the child’s father came home from work, he found the boy crying in an upstairs bedroom, noticed the bloody towels in his underwear and took him to the hospital. (Houston Chronicle)

Slightest Provocation
Ashley Marie Prenovost, 24, went on a naked rampage after she and her live-in boyfriend returned to their home in Glendale, Ariz., and he refused to have sex with her. Police said Prenovost punched two holes in a bedroom wall and “punched a picture hanging on the wall in the hallway, causing glass to break and causing injuries to both of suspect’s hands.” Holding their 4-month-old daughter, she then ran around inside the home and “bled all over the floor in the master bedroom, hallway, common area by the front door and kitchen.” (The Smoking Gun)

Cold Case
When Canadian authorities featured the case of Lucy Johnson in their missing-persons file, her daughter used the information to advertise the disappearance in newspapers, including in the Yukon, where her mother once lived. Royal Canadian Mounted Police official Curtis Harling said it wasn’t long before the daughter, Linda Evans, heard from a woman saying she’s Johnson’s daughter from a later marriage. Johnson disappeared in 1961, but her husband, Marvin Johnson, didn’t report her missing until 1965, arousing police suspicions. Marvin Johnson died in the late 1990s. Harling said the sisters were pleased to find out they had other family members but added that their mother, now 77 and living under a different name, has a lot of questions to answer. (The Canadian Press)

Second-Amendment Follies
A woman was critically injured at her home in Dayton, Nev., while her son was showing his new gun to his father. Lyon County sheriff’s deputies said that when the young man pulled the gun out of its holster, it accidentally fired, wounding the woman in the leg. (Reno’s KOLO-TV)

News and Blues is compiled from the nation’s press. To contribute, submit original clippings, citing date and source, to Roland Sweet in care of the Syracuse New Times.


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