A McLoud man recently was arrested in Oklahoma City on complaints of drug charges and stealing drop boxes from three different shipping companies, according to a report from Oklahoma City police released Monday.
Officers arrested the man after being called about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday to investigate a call about someone selling drugs outside a home at 2232 SW 26.
When an officer knocked on the door, the man who answered it appeared very nervous, a police report stated. The officer saw what appeared to be a gun in the man’s pocket and asked him to step out on the porch. A search revealed what appeared to be a small bag of marijuana in the man’s coat pocket, the report showed.
A second man who came out of the house told police he was feeling ill. He was transported to the hospital by EMSA.
While both men refused to give permission for a house search, the man accused of holding the drugs told investigators said drop boxes from FedEx and UPS were in a shed out back.
A quick check with area shipping companies showed FedEx had four boxes stolen recently, while UPS had six drop boxes stolen, the police report said.
Officers went through the home’s trash cart, and found a baggie containing a small amount of cocaine, broken drop box locks and several packing slips and envelopes belonging to UPS, FedEx and Lone Star Shipping.
In a search of the house, officers found a loaded .22-caliber handgun, a pit bull — removed by animal control officers — more FedEx and UPS envelopes and four large concrete blocks.
UPS officials told police their drop boxes were anchored on similar concrete blocks and the locks found in the trash were consistent with the type used by both shipping companies, according to the report.
The report also noted that shipping company officials were called to the house, where they identified several large stickers belonging on the outside of their drop boxes, more locks and other parts belonging to the boxes—- including pieces of a UPS drop box door–all in the storage shed behind the house.
While officers were there, another man walking by the house was arrested too, after one of the men inside the home told officers the bystander had been inside when officers had first arrived.
Officers questioned that man and discovered he had an outstanding arrest warrant for first degree burglary.
The McLoud man was arrested on complaints of receiving and concealing stolen property and two counts of possession of marijuana.
Chad Crow, staff writer
An Oklahoma City woman was shot in the face by a man at a city park, Oklahoma City police said Monday.
About 11:45 p.m. Saturday, officers were sent to meet the woman at 900 NW 90. The 19-year-old woman had an open wound across the bridge of her nose and what appeared to be a bullet exit wound in her right cheek.
The woman told officers she had agreed to meet her ‘baby’s daddy’ at a nearby park, NW 101 and University, after the man told her “he just wanted to talk.”
She accused the man, whom police did not identify, of shooting at her while she was sitting in her car, with at least one shot hitting her in the face. Her car was also hit by bullets at least three times, according to police.
After being shot, the woman drove herself to 900 NW 90, where she called 911.
When officers investigated the park, they didn’t find any shell casings.
They are looking for a man who was driving a green Chevy Blazer, and plan to arrest him on complaints of domestic abuse and assault with a deadly weapon, if he is found.
The woman was taken to a hospital for treatment, and her car was impounded to be processed for evidence.
Chad Crow,staff writer
On an average day I receive a couple dozen emails from various interests wanting to get their story into the newspaper. I’m not sure the topic of “worm poop” is going to see the printed pages. But since this particular email, titled “Scotts Miracle Gro sues Worm Poop Firm” caught the attention of several of us on business desk today, why not share it with all of you online?
Here’s the pitch, which the writer personalized to several of us on business desk:
The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company has filed a lawsuit against TerraCycle, Inc., a small inner-city manufacturer of eco-friendly gardening products that are made from organic waste fed to worms. The resulting worm poop is liquefied and packaged in used soda bottles. Scotts claims that the two company’s products look similar and might confuse consumers.
In addition, Scotts is suing TerraCycle for saying that its plant foods are as good or better than “a leading synthetic plant food” and for refusing Scotts’
demands to hand over its scientific tests conducted at the Rutgers University EcoComplex to Scotts’ scientists and lawyers.
Scotts products are packaged in traditional plastic and cardboard containers, while TerraCycle’s non-toxic products are packaged in re-used soda bottles that are collected through its Bottle Brigade Recycling Program. Children in communities all across the country participate in TerraCycle’s Bottle Brigade program on a daily basis, saving hundreds of thousands of used bottles from ending up in landfills. TerraCycle donates 5¢ for every bottle collected to the nonprofits chosen by the collectors. Nonprofits that have benefited from TerraCycle’s donations include Habitat for Humanity, Nature’s Conservancy, Earth’s Birthday, and Boys and Girls Clubs – just to name a few.
Scotts Miracle-Gro is a New York Stock Exchange-listed company with annual sales last year of $2.7 billion dollars and a profit of $132.7 million. In comparison, TerraCycle’s sales in 2006 were $1.5 Million, this .06% of Scotts annual sales and TerraCycle has yet to break even. Its office and plant are located in the Urban Enterprise Zone of Trenton, New Jersey. TerraCycle has 33 workers compared to Scotts’ 5,000.
Martin Johnson, who founded Isles, Inc., a Trenton-based nonprofit community development and environmental organization, in 1981 says: “TerraCycle is an important leader in bringing new private-sector energy and jobs into Trenton, one of the nations most distressed cities, which is why Isles is a shareholder.”
“If successful, this lawsuit could mean the loss of jobs for inner-city low-income residents, most of whom did not have a regular job until they joined the TerraCycle team,” said 25 year-old TerraCycle CEO Szaky. “Consumers could also lose access to products which have been independently rated as North America’s most eco-friendly products.
Scotts is claiming that TerraCycle makes false comparisons about the performance of the two companies’ products. However tests conducted at Rutgers’s University showed that TerraCycle organic plant food performed as well or better than an unnamed synthetic fertilizer in most aspects of plant growth. But forget science and testing, said Suzy Bales, former editor of Better Homes and Gardens, “No test is necessary, the answer is obvious. Of course worm poop is better then a chemical. Worm poop is Mother Nature’s fertilizer.”
Extensive additional information on the lawsuit and each company can be found at www.suedbyscotts.com. The site contains all legal documents pertaining to the case, letters between the companies and much more.
As Advertising Age recently commented: “It’s a rather novel marketing strategy:
touting your company as being sued by a rival. But what else would you expect from a company that built a business from compost, worm droppings and old plastic bottles. With a pending lawsuit from fertilizer giant Miracle-Gro, TerraCycle has turned a legal liability into a marketing asset – and hardly spent a dime doing it.”
MSN Money recently released its Customer Service Hall of Shame rankings. The rankings were based on an MSN Money/Zogby poll in which respondents were asked to rank a company’s service.
The top 10 companies that had the worst rankings in the customer service field are:
2-Bank of America
4-Time Warner Cable
Not surprisingly, one of the companies I use is on this list. My saga begin nearly two months ago when I discovered a discrepancy on my credit card statement. My statement indicated that someone had used one of my credit card checks and cashed it in the amount of the $850. I don’t understand how this happened because I always rip up those credit card checks when I receive them because I never use them.
When I called my credit card company’s fraud hotline to tell them about the discrepancy, I was transferred numerous times. Each time that I was transferred, I had to explain my story from the very beginning. Needless to say, I was frustrated.
After spending an hour on hold, navigating my way through the automated voice system, explaining my situation to numerous people and being transferred, a woman finally came on the line and told me that I would have to view a copy of the check to be 100 percent certain that I’m not the person who cashed it. She said I will receive a copy of the check in the mail within seven to 10 business days.
After the 10th day, I still haven’t received anything in the mail, so I called my credit card company a second time. Once again, I had to explain my story to numerous people, and I was transferred over and over again. I felt like no one wanted to deal with me. So, after an hour, another woman came on the phone and said they would send me another copy since I hadn’t received the other copy they were supposed to send within seven to 10 business days.
Once again, after the 10th business day, I still hadn’t received anything in the mail. So, I called the credit card company for a third time. Once again, I was transferred to numerous people, and I had to explain my situation over and over again. Another woman came to the phone and said they would send another check copy in the mail.
Well, I finally received a copy of the check, and it wasn’t me who cashed that $850 check. So, I called the credit card company for a fourth time. Once again I was transferred to numerous people, and I had to explain my situation over and over again. Another customer service representative came to the phone and said since I’m not the one who cashed the credit card check, they would have to mail me an affidavit, and I would have to sign the affidavit verifying that I didn’t cash the check. The representative then told me that once their investigation is complete, they would remove the $850 off of my account.
I would estimate that I had to spend a total of five hours on the phone being transferred, placed on hold, explaining my situation and talking to an automated voice system.
It makes no sense to me why big corporations can’t create some type of customer service system that is friendly and convenient to its customers. Now that MSN Money has released their Customer Service Hall of Shame list, maybe these companies who didn’t fare too well will stop to examine their procedures and make some much needed changes.
By the way, I made all of those phone calls during my lunch breaks. Therefore, I wasted five hours worth of lunch time, and I’ll never get those precious hours back.
Tim Henley, staff writer
Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month starts tomorrow, but don’t look for a state-sponsored celebration in Oklahoma.
The Department of Human Services puts on a party at the state Capitol to celebrate Hispanic and American Indian heritage months in the fall and black heritage month in February. That’s because DHS employees of those ethnicities spearheaded the events, said agency spokesman George Johnson Jr.
“If we had any employees of Asian descent come forward and take the leadership I’m sure that could be arranged,” Johnson said.
Almost 600 Asians work in state government, according to a recent report by the Office of Personnel Management. Any takers?
For more information about Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month and lots of facts about Asians in the United States, click here.
Judy Gibbs Robinson, staff writer
How closely have you been following the news in the past week or so? This is your chance to find out. From The Oklahoman’s news copy editors and designers, here’s a quiz:
1. If the socialist candidate for president in France wins a runoff, the candidate will be France’s:
a) First Jewish president
b) First president who also competed on “Survivor”
c) First socialist president
d) First woman president
2. What baseball player hit his 740th home run, bringing him within 16 home runs of breaking Hank Aaron’s record?
a) Hank Blalock
b) Barry Bonds
c) Roy Hobbs
d) Sam “Mayday” Malone
3. Glass vials containing a mysterious chemical were uncovered last week by digging at Great Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge. They caused eye and lung irritation, and are thought to be remnants of Army operations at the site during World War II. Many visitors to the refuge dig, looking for:
a) Iron pyrite
b) Bauxite ore
c) Calcite formations
d) Selenite crystals
4. Last week, the Dow Jones industrial average reached a level it had never seen before. What was that level?
5. For the first time, astronomers have discovered a planet outside our solar system that is potentially habitable. What are they calling the planet?
a) Earth Jr.
6. A newly discovered mineral with the same composition as kryptonite would possibly cripple which comic book character?
a) Green Lantern
c) Captain America
7. The nation was sent into another food scare when:
a) Rats were found in more fast-food restaurants
b) Hogs were quarantined after eating tainted food
c) Salmonella found in peanut butter — again
d) A shortage of wheat was announced
8. Which celebrity participated in a New York police sting operation targeting would-be sexual predators?
a) Miss America Lauren Nelson
b) Miss Oklahoma Lindsey Miller
c) Barbara Walters
d) Rosie O’Donnell
9. At the annual Oklahoma FFA convention, it was noted there likely will be a shortage of what in the next few years?
a) Farm land
b) Tractor fuel
c) Switch grass
d) Ag teachers
10. Gov. Brad Henry signed House Bill 1669 designating what as the state vegetable?
11. Oklahoma native and American Idol winner Carrie Underwood recently visited which country for a charity special?
a) South Africa
12. David Boren, president of the University of Oklahoma, has been forced to defend his university for:
a) Placing a memorial paver bearing the name of the student who blew himself up.
b) Placing a memorial paver honoring Katie Couric
c) Its role in the latest football recruiting scandal
b) Its role in the latest basketball recruiting scandal
13. The new Oklahoma City Public Schools Superintendent says he’d like to close student achievement gaps by:
a) Implementing a data-collection system to analyze student performance
b) Improving the rewards system for excellent student performance
c) Getting the clashing groups under control at the new John Marshall High School
d) Spending more money on basics
14. Folks in the state, including Gov. Brad Henry, are upset because the designs being considered for Oklahoma’s commemorative quarter left what out of the likeness of the Pioneer Woman?
a) Shocks of wheat
b) Purse on her arm
c) Bible under her arm
d) Son at her side
15. Iranian officials have told women they must do what?
a) Take gun-safety lessons from police or military officers
b) Join their neighborhood garden club and grow vegetables, including watermelons
c) Stop showing so much hair and stop wearing overcoats that are too
d) Study the works of William Shakespeare and Mark Twain
How did you do on the quiz? Here are the answers:
1-D; 2-B; 3-D; 4-B; 5-B; 6-D; 7-B; 8-A; 9-D; 10-A; 11-A; 12-A; 13-A; 14-C; 15-C
- As Virginia Tech students resumed their prepared for resumption of classes, reports showed that the gunman fired more than 100 shots rounds during his deadly attack.
- A close presidential election in France is headed toward a runoff between the conservative and socialist candidates.
- After the deaths of nine Palestinians in clashes with Israeli troops, Hamas called for a new wave of attacks against Israel in retaliation, threatening to disrupt a 5-month-old cease-fire.
- American Indian women nationally are victims of sexual violence at 2.5 times the rate of other U.S. women, and those are just the cases reported to law enforcement authorities, according to a report released by Amnesty International.
- Mexico City lawmakers legalized abortion in North America’s largest city, a measure that likely will influence policies and health practices across Mexico and in other parts of Latin America.
- Inmates staged a two-hour riot at a medium-security men’s prison in Indiana, injuring two staff members and setting fires in a courtyard.
- A Navy Blue Angels pilot who died during an air show once had University of Oklahoma football coach Bob Stoops as a passenger in his plane.
- At least 10 people were killed when a tornado struck the small community of Eagle Pass, Texas, near the Mexican border, destroying two schools and damaging hundreds of homes.
- A mineral recently unearthed in Serbia has the same composition as kryptonite, the fictional substance that cripples Superman, the British Museum announced.
- State Rep. Ryan McMullen, D-Burns Flat, said he will continue to push for an independent redistricting commission to redraw legislative and judicial lines after the 2010 census in an effort to take politics out of the process.
- U.S. Rep. John Sullivan, R-Tulsa, said he does not support a House bill that would allow survivors of the 1921 Tulsa race riot and their descendants five years to seek damages in court.
- Glass vials containing chemicals were unearthed at Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge in Alfalfa County, and all digging for selenite crystals was suspended. Later, the Army began cleaning up the items, which were once used to train soldiers how to detect chemical warfare attacks.
- For the first time, Toyota sold more vehicles globally in a quarter than General Motors.
- Edward G. Lawson Jr., a Tulsa businessman and Republican leader, sold his historic 1,400-acre Lawson River Ranch in Claremore in 15 parcels to seven buyers for $4.97 million.
- A man who was shot to death April 21 in a murder-suicide at the Johnson Space Center in Houston had attended Oklahoma State University and Oklahoma Baptist University. David Beverly, 62, a graduate of Broken Arrow High School, was an engineer for NASA.
- Former Russian President Boris Yeltsin, who hastened the Soviet Union’s collapse and pushed Russia to embrace democracy and a market economy, died of heart failure April 23 at age 76.
- Attorney General Drew Edmondson urged Gov. Brad Henry to veto a tort reform bill, saying it could hamper the state’s ability to file lawsuits. Henry took Edmondson’s advice.
- Enid police think a recent theft of lawnmowers and all-terrain vehicles could be tied to a multistate theft ring that has amassed $500,000 in stolen goods in a rash of thefts this month.
- University of Oklahoma President David Boren defended the placement on campus of a memorial stone with the name of a student suicide bomber. The stone near the Oklahoma Memorial Union bears the name of Joel H. Hinrichs III, who blew himself up outside the OU stadium on Oct. 1, 2005. Boren called for understanding and compassion.
- By a vote of 51-56, the Democratic-controlled Senate voted to begin the exit of U.S. forces from Iraq by Oct. 1 with complete withdrawal six months after that date. The White House has said President Bush will veto any such legislation. A Bush spokeswoman said, “The bill is dead before arrival.”
- The artist who sculpted the Pioneer Woman statue nearly 80 years ago wanted her to have a Bible, but the book is deleted in all four designs of a likeness of the statue that are being considered for the state’s commemorative quarter.
Lisa Pryor, chairman of the Oklahoma Democratic Party, sees hope in the fact that Democratic presidential candidates have raised so much money in Oklahoma so far.
“I think Democrats are on the move,” she said in a recent interview. “I think they’re very excited and energized about the opportunity to put a Democrat in the White House.”
Pryor’s comments came after the latest fundraising reports from the presidential candidates showed that Democratic Sen. Barack Obama and former Democratic Sen. John Edwards each have raised more money in Oklahoma for their presidential campaigns than all of the Republican presidential candidates combined.
Obama took in $309,111 after fundraisers in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. Edwards, who has visited the state several times, has raised $219,247.
The top Republican fundraiser in the state so far is former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who has collected $138,650 from Oklahomans for his presidential run.
Pryor said several Republicans bought tickets to see Obama in Oklahoma and vowed that they were ready to vote for a Democrat. The state hasn’t voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964.
Gary Jones, chairman of the Oklahoma Republican Party, said Republican donors in the state are still sorting through the candidates and are “still waiting to see the complete field.”
But he said the fundraising totals don’t mean Democrats are poised to break their losing streak in presidential contests in Oklahoma.
“Any one of our top three (candidates) would beat any one of their top three in Oklahoma,” he said.
Among the things that Vice President Dick Cheney and Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, have in common is their consistently optimistic outlook about Iraq.
Cheney, who spoke at a fundraiser for Inhofe in Tulsa today, said in June 2005 on CNN: “The level of activity that we see today from a military standpoint, I think, will clearly decline. I think they’re in the last throes, if you will, of the insurgency.”
Earlier this month, on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” the vice president said: “I do believe we can win in Iraq. I think it is a worthy cause. I think it’s absolutely essential that we prevail, and I think the United States of America, at the beginning of the 21st century, is perfectly capable of winning this fight against these people and setting up and establishing an Iraq, a democratic government that can defend itself. That’s basically our mission.”
Inhofe has made several trips to Iraq and has returned each time with an upbeat assessment.
In August 2003, just a few months after the invasion, Inhofe said, “I felt much better (about the progress) after being there. My overall assessment is things are going very well.”
After a trip to the Sunni Triangle in April 2005, he said, “We’re light years ahead of where I thought we were. We’re moving in the right direction.”
Then, in December 2005, he returned from a trip to Baghad and Fallujah and reported, “Each time, it’s been better, but the progress has never been as dramatic as this.”
Last April, in a speech on the Senate floor, Inhofe said, “You almost have go to there and see these people, and see what they are doing now that they say they couldn’t have done. It is very difficult for an American to walk through the streets _ whether it is Tikrit, Fallujah, Baghdad or anywhere else _ without people running up to you and saying my daughter can now get married, our girls can now go to school, now we have water we can drink, now we have a sewage system that we haven’t had since the end of the regime of Saddam Hussein.”
And Thursday, Inhofe said on the Senate floor, “We now see an improved Iraq. We see hospitals. We see manufacturers that are making clothing. We see girls that are going to school. This has never happened in the history of Iraq. We’ve seen all this progress …”
Needless to say, Democrats don’t share the optimism.
This week Democrats in both houses pushed through a war spending bill that would set timelines for withdrawing U.S. troops, with a goal of having most of them out by next April.
Sen. James Webb, D-Virginia, a former Navy secretary whose son is serving in the Marines in Iraq, said on the Senate floor on Thursday: “We won this war 4 years ago. The question is, When do we end the occupation?
“Iraq has been in turmoil for thousands of years. It will be in turmoil of one kind or another long after we leave. The U.S. military is not going to change the societal makeup of Iraq. The Maliki government is not going to bring peace among Iraq’s competing factions without the strong, diplomatic cooperation of other countries in the region.”
Optimistic or not, Democrats and Republicans must now find some middle ground and craft a war spending bill that will fund the military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan through September. But then the debate will begin on funding for the war in the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1.
The second annual Kids Day, sponsored by Remington Park, will be 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday on the north side of Remington Park’s track apron.
More than 3,000 children attended last year’s Kids Day, organizers said.
The free event will feature face painting, pony rides, live music, arts, crafts, free gifts and children’s contests. Free ice cream will be provided by Braum’s Ice Cream & Dairy Stores.
Entertainers Huarachin and Huarachon, who are famous in Mexico for their clown act, will also be part of the festivities.
Kids may also have photos taken with jockeys who race at Remington Park.
Sponsors are Braum’s Ice Cream & Dairy Stores, La Tremenda KZUE-AM 1460 AM,
Oklahoma Quarter Horse Association, Wal-Mart, El Nacional Newspaper, Roadrunner RV Park and Miller Valle & Associates Multilingual Interpreters.
For more information, call Remington Park at 424-1000.
Kids Day, which began in 1925, recognizes children, pays homage to their importance in society and endorses their well-being. Many nations, especially those in the Western hemisphere, celebrate Kids Day.