WEIRD WORLD

Sunderland Echo - - News -

TEDDY TRAUMA: The com­plaint of a mother who said po­lice of­fi­cers spilled her baby’s ashes dur­ing a house search has been dis­missed fol­low­ing an in­de­pen­dent in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Chelsea Wright, from Ruge­ley, con­tacted Stafford­shire Po­lice after a teddy bear con­tain­ing her 10-month-old son Nathan’s ashes was al­legedly dam­aged on June 27. IPCC op­er­a­tions man­ager Steve Bim­son said: “Our in­ves­ti­ga­tor con­cluded that there was no ev­i­dence to sug­gest that any of the of­fi­cers in­volved re­alised the sig­nif­i­cance of the mem­ory bear or knew what it con­tained.”

LIS­TEN HARDER: The best way to pick up on a per­son’s emo­tions is to close your eyes and lis­ten to them talk, a new study sug­gests. Peo­ple tend to read emo­tions more ac­cu­rately when they lis­ten and don’t look. The study, pub­lished in the Amer­i­can Psy­cho­log­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion’s journal Amer­i­can Psy­chol­o­gist and in­volv­ing al­most 1,800 par­tic­i­pants from the US, found that block­ing out other senses and us­ing voiceonly com­mu­ni­ca­tion “elic­its higher rates of em­pathic ac­cu­racy”. SQUIR­REL

TRICK­STER: A builder who po­lice said used a dead squir­rel to trick house­hold­ers into think­ing they needed to do re­pair work has been sen­tenced to 360 days. Ge­orge John­ston, 34, of Sandhurst Road, Tun­bridge Wells, ap­peared in cus­tody at Sevenoaks Mag­is­trates’ Court in Kent where he pleaded guilty to four counts of fraud by false rep­re­sen­ta­tion. He was sen­tenced to 90 days for each of­fence which is to run con­sec­u­tively. He was ar­rested after re­ports a man had been knock­ing on doors in Tun­bridge Wells of­fer­ing un­nec­es­sary roof re­pairs, pro­duc­ing a dead squir­rel and de­mand­ing money to clear a pest in­fes­ta­tion.

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