Strange but True

Surf's Up
A man fell to his death while "surfing" atop a moving gondola at the Keystone ski resort.

A 21-year-old Arvada man died when he fell out of a moving pickup truck while "surfing" in the truckbed.

Officers on Patrol, Part 2
After all three of its police officers quit, the town of Holly arranged for an armed maintenance worker to patrol the streets.

Actual Lawn Ornaments for Sale in Denver in 1997:
* $2,800 water heater painted to look like native totem.
* $875 "spitting gargoyle of Notre Dame."
* $400 sphere made of metal bristles taken from street sweeper.
* $240 bumblebee made from large coiled spring.
* $95 "Fu dog."
* $66 cast-concrete artichoke.

The Boy George Next Door
A high-school honors student in Longmont was arrested after a hidden camera recorded him pilfering thirteen pairs of panties, twelve bras, a pair of tights, a black slip and a camisole from the home of a middle-aged female neighbor.

Spiritual Warfare
The Denver Post scored big in October with the mega-scoop that "Jews fast, seek forgiveness on Yom Kippur." The Rocky Mountain News countered with its own revelation in December: "Hanukkah begins with a candle and continues for eight days."

Well, Excuuuse Me!
An accused murderer in Denver cited as part of his defense that he lived in a trailer as a child and was forced to use a coffee can for a toilet.

Study Hall
More revelations from the 1997 Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News:
* "Study finds women in a lot of pain"
* "Study: estrogen could help men"
* "Study finds move feasible"
* "Preliminary study reveals flaws in the study process"

Taking a Powder
Number of Colorado skiers who died on the slopes in 1997: 17.
Number who skied into trees: 10.
Number of skiers killed in collisions with resort workers: 1.

Yeller Journalism
Channel 2 reporter Jann Tracey had the tip of a finger bitten off while filming a taped segment with a caged bear that was allegedly tame.

Channel 4 reporter Sari Padorr fell off a horse and suffered minor head injuries while doing a live story about a fundraiser for the Denver Police Department's mounted patrol.

Altared States
The Abundant Life Christian Center in Arvada included a live-action date-rape scene in its Halloween "Hell House" in which a boy told a screaming girl, "Shut up and lay down!" Commented Reverend Keenan Roberts, "It's awesome!"

The Accidental Tourists
A van packed with Korean tourists hit a pickup truck in Del Norte and crashed through the wall of the town's municipal courtroom, sending shards of wood paneling flying through the air and leaving an eight-foot-square hole in the wall.

Twenty-three illegal immigrants were taken into custody by the federal Immigration and Naturalization Service after their van went off a road near Craig and overturned.

Another Case of Sour Gropes
A woman sued her "Feldenkrais" method therapist, accusing her of "deeply rubbing" her breasts during a treatment session. Responded an indignant advocate for the new-age therapy, "We don't rub!"

With Friends Like These...
Researchers at Colorado State University announced plans to capture male prairie dogs in the wild and "surgically castrate" them in an attempt to "sustain healthy populations."

His Numbers Were Up
After a nineteen-year-old Longmont man won $3 million in the state lottery, police who recognized him arrested him on an outstanding warrant. He reportedly made bail immediately.

Officers on Patrol, Part 3
A Fort Collins canine officer accidentally left her police dog locked in her patrol car last summer, and the $10,000 animal died of heatstroke.

Blazing Saddles
An inmate serving a life sentence escaped from a prison van, stole a horse and literally rode off into the sunset.

Denver was the number-one market nationally for Hoof Manicure, an equine product said to work wonders on human cuticles.

Participants at a benefit seminar for the Boulder County Safehouse were told that people experiencing stress, anger or guilt could resolve their problems by "thinking like a horse."

He Was Charged Under Murphy's Law
A Summit County man was arrested for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia after workers repossessing his car saw the drugs in the vehicle and reported them to police.

Slice of Life
A City Market employee in Summit County was accused of assault after attacking a bakery worker in a dispute over the freshness of a loaf of bread.

Darkness on the Edge of Town
A 69-year-old Highlands Ranch woman was sued by her homeowners' association after she spent money on her daughter's medical bills instead of using the funds to repaint her garage door.

Three female high-school students in Highlands Ranch conducted a survey that revealed that one of four romantic relationships at the school involved "abuse"--a definition that included making such comments as "You need to lose weight."

Sheriff's deputies in Highlands Ranch busted a Ritalin-peddling ring being operated by nine middle-school students. As part of their investigation, police found a middle-schooler in possession of alfalfa he intended to sell as marijuana.

He Had a Lack of Structure in His Life
After an unidentified thief made off with a Watkins man's dismantled "dream barn," the criminal called to apologize, saying, "Dude, I'm sorry I stole your building."

Coloradans for Family Values
A Denver man was arrested for investigation of second-degree assault after attacking his brother for finishing off a twelve-pack of beer.

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