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No Foolin’, March Was Strange

I wanted to lead this Strange Security edition off with: Nothing brings out the crazy like springtime. That’s inaccurate, though. Fact is, we’ve been doing these monthly round-ups for a couple years, and there has never been a shortage of material to choose from. With that, we bring you a collection of strange security (or security-adjacent) news for the month. But first, our standard disclaimer:

Security is serious, and even when taking a look at stories we compile because we think they are strange and think you might find them strange and interesting, too, we should remember that most security stories have victims. We do not want to diminish the importance of any painful experiences the victims in these stories had.

Number 5450-Pound Pig Caught on Home Security Video: Writing this from a close-in suburb of Washington, DC, it’s not hard to imagine that in a rural town pigs make it on home surveillance footage pretty regularly. Sure, the size is notable, though being more citified than many, I’m not sure how notable a quarter-ton pig is. What earned the spot in this month’s lineup is the pig’s name: Kevin Bacon, which enabled the AP headline writer to get clever with a line like, “Wayward 450-pound pig named Kevin Bacon hams it up for home security camera.” You’ll have to read the story to see how Kevin found his way home, complete with a deputy sheriff escort.

Number 4Dear Police Chief: Please Cease and Desist Using Lego Heads as Identity Concealments: That about sums it up. The Murrieta Police Department in California wanted to show local residents that it was protecting them, so they put arrest photos on social channels. These pre-mugshot photos, however, were problematic if you’re concerned about jeopardizing a trial where the suspect is presumed innocent until proven otherwise. The solution? Obviously doctored photos in which the suspect’s face is covered by one of those Lego people toys. The shots certainly got attention online, probably a little more than the Murrieta Police had anticipated, and the Lego Company was displeased.

Number 319,000 Bobbleheads = Prime Stolen Cargo Extortion Bait: Earlier this month, Pittsburgh Penguins great Jaromir Jagr was to be immortalized in the way all great sports stars hope to be: by attaching a head with a rough facial likeness to a cheap plastic body with a spring so when thumped the head jiggles around. The story of the following extortion attempt unfolds like a mystery novel in the hands of capable writers from The Athletic.

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Number 2

Rats Get High on Marijuana at New Orleans Police Headquarters: Nope, the rats referenced in this notable headline are not informants; it’s referring to the beady-eyed whiskered rodents. Police Superintendent Anne Kirkpatrick was probably hoping the headlines would reference the state of disrepair at the headquarters, which was the point when she told the city council that rats were getting high eating marijuana at the facility. Instead, people just speculated if they could tell the rats were high because they raided the Cheetohs out of the vending machines when they were done in the evidence room.

Number 1When Life Imitates Art. Art? Okay, Life Imitates Something Art-Adjacent: In true Weekend at Bernie’s fashion, two women in Ohio drove a corpse to a bank and withdrew money from the dead man's bank accounts. The deceased individual lived with the women, and apparently it was a standard practice that they would accompany him to the bank and withdraw money, which the bank allowed since they could see the bank account owner. After pulling the cash out, the women then drove the body to the hospital.

Other security-related stories that caught our attention in the past month:

How would you have liked to be the customs official making this discovery? Illegally imported goose intestines hidden under dead rattlesnakes, federal authorities say.

Paging Carl from Caddyshack: 'Stampede' of kangaroos invades Melbourne golf course.

The story here really should be: why in the world would there be a permit that would allow an alligator to live in a person’s home in Buffalo, New York? New York man fighting to bring 750-pound pet gator home after reptile seized.

The bizarre story of the stolen pumps, still making news nearly 20 years after they were stolen: A second man is charged in connection with 2005 theft of ruby slippers worn in ‘The Wizard of Oz’