January 18, 2005
In Durham, N.C., in December, gang member Robert D. Johnson was sentenced to 15 years in prison for shooting off the genitals of a fellow Blood who was trying to leave the group. The jury rejected an even harsher penalty, for "malicious castration," settling on "nonmalicious castration" because of evidence that Johnson actually shot the man in the leg but that the bullet just happened to exit his thigh and hit his penis. [Raleigh News and Observer-AP, 12-17-04]
Victoria Pettigrew started VIP Fibers three years ago in Morgan Hill, Calif., and according to a December 2004 report by the Knight Ridder News Service, has an enthusiastic clientele of pet owners who pay her to make specialty items (blankets, pillows, scarves) from their animals' hair ("Better yarn from your pet than a sheep you never met"). For example, client Bob Miller of Carmel, Calif., brought in enough collected sheddings of his golden retriever for a blanket, two couch pillows, a small teddy bear, a scarf and a picture frame. Pettigrew has also created items from the hair of cats, sheep, alpaca, bison, rabbits, hamsters, cows and horses. [Buffalo News-Knight Ridder, 12-31-04]
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