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Lowering the Bar: Legal Tales

Journal Entry: Thu Sep 18, 2014, 5:40 PM
Good Reason to Kill #50: Would Not Buy a Hat

This case did not involve an angry hat-seller, but rather was an incident of domestic violence, which, I hasten to point out, is never funny except on the very rare occasions it is.

According to WKRN in Nashville, a woman was arrested Saturday night after assaulting her husband outside Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville (this was the Nashville Margaritaville, not one of the many other Margaritavilles in what turns out to be a frighteningly large and aggressively expanding Margaritaville Empire). Reportedly, the woman became furious after her husband refused to buy her a hat.

Technically, though, the assault per se wasn't triggered by the hat refusal, but rather came after the man escalated matters by taking off his own hat and throwing it into the street. Presumably this was accompanied by some sort of suggestion that she should go get that hat, but if so the report doesn't mention it. I think it was at least implied, because it was following the hat toss that the woman allegedly pushed her husband into the street with it, and began to choke him. Bystanders restrained her and called police. Domestic-assault charges followed.

The report says that the couple was visiting from West Virginia to attend the Titans game on Sunday, so this would appear to be yet another NFL-related domestic-violence incident.

Unfortunately, the report is short on details (and accurate spelling) so we learn nothing about the hats involved.

Man Beaten With Own Leg by Leg-Wielding Girlfriend

Is domestic violence ever funny? No, of course not.

With the single possible exception of when all the following criteria are met:

   It happens to someone else, and
   It involves a man being beaten by a woman, and
   She beats him with his own prosthetic leg, and
   The leg is a spare one, so he can still flee and thus avoid serious injury.

Otherwise, never.

Police in Midland, Michigan, were called about a domestic disturbance on August 3, 2005. The victim, who wears a prosthetic leg, reported that he and his girlfriend had been drinking beer and began arguing about an incident that had occurred four years ago. The argument escalated, and eventually the woman seized the man's spare leg and began to beat him with it.

The relatively good news was that the spare was an older wooden model, not the modern titanium leg that the man was actually wearing. Also, since he was wearing the other leg, he was able to flee to the front yard, although he was still flight-impaired and so the woman was able to pursue and continue to beat him. She fled, with the leg, after a witness called police. The woman was later arrested and charged with larceny (for stealing the leg) and assault with a dangerous weapon (for wielding it).

As of press time, the leg had not been recovered.

Fish Killer Gets Probation

I think I have only seen one other story that I thought was funny although it involved domestic violence, and that one involved a woman beating a man with his own prosthetic leg.  See "Man Beaten With Own Leg by Leg-Wielding Girlfriend." Nothing funny about the domestic violence itself, of course, just the surrounding circumstances.

This story is like that.

Donald Fite III of Portland, Oregon, pleaded guilty on October 13 to domestic violence assault (the not-funny part) and animal abuse (the in-this-case-funny part).  His former girlfriend, Sarah Harris, told police that although the two had broken up, she found him one day in her apartment.  He wanted to get back together, but when she refused he got angry, shoved her and pulled her hair, but she was able to escape.

When she returned with police, her ex was gone, but she found a fish from her aquarium pinned to the wooden floor with a knife through it.

Now, if this was almost any other kind of pet, I would not find this funny at all.  Maybe I'm just incapable of bonding with fish.  And if this had been all there was to it, probably no post.  But at this point the story seemed to go a little over the top.

Harris said that the fish, a Betta or Siamese fighting fish about three inches long named "DeLorean," was very important to her and that she had cried hysterically upon seeing it impaled.  "Donald bought the fish for me," she said, "and I'm sure he knew how much I cared for it."  He certainly did, and admitted almost immediately that this was why he had executed it.  "If she can't have me," he reportedly told police, "then she can't have the fish."  He's got that first part backwards.  Not only does this guy fail to treat women with respect, he can't even get his revenge saying right.

At the hearing this week, Fite's attorney said that his client did feel remorse for the ichthyocide, and that stabbing a fish represented a "very low point" in his client's life.  "He is absolutely mortified and ashamed about what he did to the fish," said Tom McNair, who also noted that his client had no prior criminal record.  Judge Eric Bergstrom accepted Fite's guilty plea, sentenced him to two years probation with community service and ordered him to undergo a psychological evaluation. The prosecutor also noted that Harris allegedly planned "to get a memorial tattoo of the fish" and wanted Fite to pay for it, but Judge Bergstrom denied that request.

According to the report, the judge also ordered Fite to stay away from Harris, "but said he could have contact with fish."

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JACAC Featured By Owner Jan 13, 2014
h e l l o . Kat:wave:
t h a n k . y o u . f o r . t h e . k i n d . :+fav: . =)

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s m i l e . t h e . g r e y . c o l o u r s . o f . w i n t e r . a r e . o u t . t h e r e =)=)
h a pp y . 2014
garrypfc Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the fave:)
LaPurr Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2013
Welcome :D
donvito62 Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013
Thank You For The Fav's :)
LaPurr Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013
You're welcome. :)
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