Archive for July, 2010
Friday, July 30th, 2010
It was a long, long afternoon for dozens of passengers stranded on a tour boat in the middle of the Red River. The River Rouge boat got held up on a sandbar just north of the city yesterday. A tugboat ended up being called in to try and free it up….but, couldn’t move it. The Coast Guard eventually sent out a shuttle to get the 69 passengers on board, to shore. No word as of this morning…whether or not the boat is still stuck.
City firecrews were busy yesterday, not battling a blaze per say, rather a toppled tower. A communication tower on top of the Radisson Hotel in the city’s downtown fell, and was left hanging off the side of the building. Firefighters were able to pull it back onto the building’s roof…and fortunately no one got hurt.
Almost 3 dozen of the 64 neglected dogs seized from a property in Gull Lake, have had to be destroyed. Bill McDonald of the Humane Society says provincial animal officers were forced to put the dogs down because they were either too sick or were mentally shattered because of the conditions they had been living in.
Today’s the day the Supreme Court will announce whether convicted serial killer Robert Pickton will get a new trial. Pickton, a pig farmer from B.C., was convicted back in 2007 of killing 6 women in Vancouver. For that, he’s serving life in jail with no parole for 25 years. But his lawyers are arguing that the judge made a mistake when instructing the jury.
This morning BP will unveil its plan to help the Gulf of Mexico recover from the massive oil spill which the company caused. Local officials have been pressing the company for more long term commitments to help people whose livelihoods have been wiped out by the spill.
Meantime, many American motorists are giving the cold shoulder to BP these days. In the aftermath of the spill, some BP gas stations have reported sales drops of up to 40 per cent from Florida to Illinois.
Well techno geeks will be lining up for Apple’s new iPhone, which goes on sale in this country today. Since it hit the market in the States, 5 weeks ago, the iPhone has drawn a lot of complaints about dropped calls when it’s held a certain way. So, the company is now giving away free rubber cases that it claims will improve reception.
One of this country’s most notorious convicted serial killers will be the focus of a ruling today from the highest court in the land. The Supreme Court will announce if Robert Pickton will get a new trial. Back in 2007, Pickton was found guilty of killing half a dozen sex trade workers in Vancouver. He’s still facing charges in the deaths of 20 other women. But, his lawyers say the judge in the first case, made a mistake when instructing the jury, and Pickton should be given a new trial.
Lot of smiling faces today at Honda’s headquarters. The company made a record profit in the 2nd quarter of this year. In fact, Japan’s 2nd biggest automaker said it raked in 3.2 billion U.S., which is 36 times what it made during the same time period last year.
There are different estimates on how much oil has leaked from that Canadian owned pipe-line in Michigan. Calgary based, Enbridge says about 3 million litres has leaked into the Kalamazoo river in that state. However, the U.S. Environment Protection Agency says the amount may be as high as 4 million. No matter how much has leaked out, both sides agree it’s gonna be a long road of cleanup.
Thursday, July 29th, 2010
A St. James-Assiniboia School Division assistant has been charged with sexually assaulting a child. 30 year old Kevin Sidwell was picked up by city police last month…and is now facing charges of abduction and sexual assault. No word yet when he’ll appear in court.
A 41 year old man has been arrested after child abuse images were found on his work laptop. The police services child exploitation unit started the investigation after getting a tip through the website Cybertip.ca. Officers ended up getting a warrant to examine the laptop…and what they found wasn’t good. A 41 year old man is now facing numerous charges.
From the oil spill in the Gulf to a spill now in Michigan. 3.8 million litres of oil, several hundred thousand more than previously thought, is now flowing in that state’s Kalamazoo river. And Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm is now warning of a tragedy of historic proportions if the oil should reach Lake Michigan some 125 kilometers down stream. The oil is from a Canadian pipeline that ruptured Monday.
And yet another vehicle recall to tell ya about. Toyota Canada has announced what it’s calling a voluntary safety campaign involving about 4200 Avalons from the 200 to 2004 model years. The automaker says as a result of improper casting of the steering lock bar, there’s a chance it could break under certain conditions. Meantime, Lexus also says they may have some steering issues with one of its vehicles. Owners of either affected make will be contacted by mail.
Another evacuation order is in effect in the B.C. interior this morning, thanks to a fast moving wildfire north of Kamloops. The blaze grew more than 7 times its size within just hours yesterday. Over 120 people were quickly asked to pack up and leave by fire officials.
It’s the toughest sentence ever imposed under this country’s rarely used sex tourism law. Ken Klassen of Burnaby, B.C. was given 11 years in jail for having sex with girls as young as 8 in Cambodia and Colombia. The 59 year old father of 3 plead guilty to 14 charges. Along with the prison term, Klassen is also banned for life from going to parks, playgrounds and schools, and must also provide a DNA sample to keep on file.
California investigators looking into the death of Michael Jackson won’t file charges against 7 doctors who treated him over the years. Jackson’s personal doc though, Conrad Murray, has plead not guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the singer’s death. Authorities say Murray provided Jackson with a mix of sedatives, including the powerful anesthetic, propofol, which killed him.
City police unveiled the new look of their cruisers yesterday. The black and white color scheme will go on the service’s fleet of marked vehicles. Chief Keith McCaskill says you’ll start seeing the new look cruisers on city streets within the next 2 to 3 weeks. This is the first time the police service has changed or altered the color scheme of its vehicles since 1989.
Well we’ve told you, or warned you about this before….and now it looks like the time has come. In just a couple of years, Manitobans will not only have to know the phone number of whomever they’re calling, but, their area code too. By 2012, the province will get an additional area code….431. And along with the new code, you’ll now have to dial all 10 digits for even a local call. The changes are being made to prevent the province from running out of phone numbers.
Wednesday, July 28th, 2010
A woman convicted of the brutal murder of her 5 year old daughter, will not appeal her case to the Supreme Court. That clears the way for a public inquiry into the Manitoba Child Welfare system and its handling of the case of Phoenix Sinclair. Samantha Kematch, Phoenix’s mother, was convicted along with her boyfriend Karl McKay of 1st degree murder in the child’s 2005 death.
It’s day 100 since that oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico killed 11 workers and set off the worst oil spill in U.S. history. The leak has yet to be permanently capped, and for people along the Gulf Coast, life has changed forever.
Hat tricks may work well in hockey, but they’re not so successful when it comes to smuggling live lizards across the border. A 34 year old Winnipeg man has been slapped with a 1500 dollar fine for trying to smuggle 2 iguanas into this country without a permit. Emlyn Henry was returning to Winnipeg from Mexico in March of 2009 when border officers noticed an iguana sticking out from under a hat he’d placed on a table, while his bag was being examined. It is illegal to import any wild animals into the country without a permit. The lizards were seized immediately and Henry was given a court date.
It’s the end of an era in Windsor, Ontario. General Motors is now just hours away from calling it a day in that city. The final transmission will roll off the line at the G.M. transmission plant this afternoon, bringing the automaker’s 90 year stay in that city to an end. The closure of the plant is all part of G.M. downsizing.
Officials now say that at least 25 bodies have been found in the wreckage of a passenger plane that crashed in Islamabad, Pakistan overnight. At least 5 injured survivors were rescued from the plane which had 152 people on board when it went down in heavy rain. So far, officials say it does not appear that any Canadians were onboard the flight.
Golf-ball sized hail appears to have killed hundreds of geese on a Hutterite colony in southern Manitoba. Apparently, the James Valley colony said Monday night’s storm, killed geese that were being raised as livestock. The colony did have between 30 and 40 thousand of the birds.
We’re gonna find out today if the country’s highest court will grant serial killer Robert Pickton a new trial. The former pig farmer from B.C., was convicted back in 2007 on 6 counts of 1st degree murder. He has appealed those convictions to the Supreme Court however, on the grounds the judge made a mistake when instructing the jury.
A hacker believed to be responsible for creating a malicious computer code that infected as many as 12 million computers around the world, has been nabbed in Slovenia. The virus took down more than half of the Fortune 1000 companies, and at least 40 major banks. FBI officials say the suspect is only 23 years old.
Monday, July 19th, 2010
City police say a 20 year old man was injured when shots got fired at a house this weekend. Officers actually had some trouble finding the victim after the shooting, who had made his own way to hospital. He’s since been treated and released, and is currently co operating with police. Officers say there were numerous people inside the house at the time of the shooting, including young children.
Investigators have now charged a driver in connection with the death of a pedestrian last week. A 46 year old woman was crossing the street on Thursday when she was hit by a vehicle making a left turn. Cops now say they’ve charged a 41 year old woman with criminal negligence causing death. So far though, no names have been released.
The owners of over 50 dogs that were seized from a garage next to a home in Gull Lake, say they’re actually Good Samaritans who took in animals that other people didn’t want. Judy and Peter Chernecki deny they abused the dogs and say they couldn’t say no, when people kept dropping them off. A Winnipeg Humane Society spokesperson says they were appalled at the condition of the dogs, who were apparently deprived of human contact and kept inhumanely. RCMP have still not said whether or not any charges will be laid.
And some sweet dreams for Leonardo DiCaprio. He had his best opening weekend ever with “Inception.” The action tale about a team that sneaks into dreams, opened up at number one at the box office, taking in more than 60 million this weekend. The animated, “Despicable Me,” dropped down to second place, while “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” had a weak 3rd place opening.
Lindsay Lohan is expected to haul her butt to jail for 90 days starting tomorrow. But, in the last few days she’s acquired a new lawyer and has a new address. Lohan has moved to a residential rehab center founded by her new lawyer, Robert Shapiro. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because he was one of O.J. Simpson’s lawyers back in 1995.
An appeals court is refusing to overturn Wesley Snipes 3 year prison sentence. So, he’s gonna have to get ready to say good-bye to the outside world. Snipes was convicted a couple of years ago of failing to file tax returns for 3 years. He owes the IRS almost 3 million dollars in back taxes which he refused to pay . No word yet on when he’ll have to report to jail.
The news, not good outta the Gulf of Mexico today. Officials say a seep has developed on the floor of the sea, right near BP’s busted oil well. There are fears that the seep may be bubbles of methane gas, which might suggest the capped well may have ruptured.
If you’re doin any flyin west today, listen up. A labour dispute could cause flight disruptions today at Vancouver International. Servisair, a Paris based company whose workers refuel airplanes, says it’s locking out its supervisors effective immediately. And the union says they plan to use untested replacement workers…..something both sides say will lead to problems on the tarmack.
Thursday, July 15th, 2010
Well you can’t say ya haven’t been warned. Today’s the day Manitoba drivers face some new rules regarding cell phones and cars, and smoking with kids in the car. As of this morning, if you get caught either text-ing or, talking on your cell without a handsfree device, you’re gonna get slapped with a 200 dollar fine. And the same goes for smoking in your vehicle, if there are children present.
Nudists are concerned one of the last places in our province where they can swim and sunbathe naked, may soon be off limits to them. Beaconia Beach on the southeast end of Lake Winnipeg is ground zero of a fight over a possible cottage development and construction of a boat canal. A nudist spokesperson, Judy Williams says if you’re gonna mess with something that affects the well being and spirituality of people, you owe it to them to be transparent….something she says officials and politicians have not been.
A 5th horse has now died in this year’s Calgary Stampede. It apparently showed signs of distress after last night’s chuckwagon races and died about 40 mins. later. A British group called League Against Cruel Sports, is now calling on Ottawa to end what it calls the immense cruelty which is inherent in rodeos.
Workers excavating at the World Trade Center site in New York have unearthed the almost 10 meter long hull of a ship. Archeologists say it was likely buried in the 18th century. They suggest the vessel was probably used along with other debris, to fill in land to extend lower Manhattan into the Hudson River.
Well some would say this comes as no surprise ! BP says a leak has been detected near the top of a new cap designed to stop the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The company says the leak is isolated and is being repaired….but, U.S. Coast Guard officials say they’ll be conducting a full set of pressure tests on the new cap as soon as its repaired.
The beer snake will no longer be slithering among fans during Blue Bomber games. Yesterday, Club President Jim Bell said there is now a zero tolerance policy in effect….which means….anyone caught stacking beer cups will be given one warning….if they continue after that…..they’ll be kicked out of the stadium.
And cold and flu season is still a few months away but here’s some good news. Canadians will soon be able to get a flu vaccine without a needle. Health officials have just approved a nasal spray vaccine called FluMist. It’s something that the U.S. has used for the past 7 years.
Wednesday, July 14th, 2010
You can call it the great snake debate. The Bombers are looking to clamp down on so called beer cup snakes. At last Friday’s game, fans in one section of the stadium stacked thousands of plastic beer cups together, creating a snake that stretched over dozens of rows. Other fans added to the beer cup supply by tossing cups from above and behind, creating a downpour of wet plastic…and, a whole lot of complaints. A Bomber spokesperson says the club’s board of directors will now be meeting to discuss new security measures in case the snakes slithers in the stands again.
It was a bust to end all busts. City police have seized cocaine worth some 2.5 million dollars. Cops found it in a semi trailer on the Trans-Canada. Officers believe the drugs were destined for the eastern part of the country. 2 men from B.C. are now facing numerous drug charges.
Manitoba is testing Toyota’s new plug in hybrid vehicle. The province took delivery of the new Prius car yesterday, and will now put it through its paces so to speak. Innovation Minister, Dave Chomiak says the province’s abundant electricity and our climate, makes us a great testing ground for electric powered vehicles.
Some pretty nasty weather around the province yesterday. The city got soaked with more rain, and a heck of a light show. While, weather officials confirm that a tornado touched down a few kilometers east of Carman. Fortunately, there’ve been no reports of any damage.
With 4 horses already dead, Calgary Stampede officials, cancelled last night’s chuck-wagon race, citing unsafe track conditions. Rain had turned the track into mud. This year’s Stampede has been hit by a rash of animal deaths and a serious injury to a rider in the just the first few days.
It’s all about the power of t.v. “Live with Regis and Kelly” has wrapped up its broadcasts in Prince Edward Island….and the province’s tourism industry is hoping their visit will have a long lasting impact. Looks like it did stir up some interest for sure, as after the first show aired from Charlottetown on Monday…..P.E.I. shot up into the top 10 Google searched of the day in the U.S.
And talk about one smart puppy. A dog trapped in a car in Pennsylvania yesterday, in sweltering heat, honked the horn until he was rescued. A vet says the chocolate Lab named Max was brought to her clinic by his owner after being in the car for about an hour. The owner had apparently stopped to do some shopping, and forgot the dog was in the car. The vet says after a long cold bath and lots of water to drink, it looks like Max will be okay.
Michael Jackson’s former home could become California’s latest state park under an idea being floated by one lawmaker. Mike Davis says he thinks it’s worth studying whether the state should take over the Neverland Ranch. He says fans from around the world would definitely want to visit the late King of Pop’s former estate.
It’s gonna be awhile longer before BP begins testing the new cap covering its leaking wellhead in the Gulf of Mexico. Officials for the company and the government announced yesterday they need more time before testing can begin. No word on what prompted that decision. The oil spill began after an offshore drilling rig exploded back on April 20th.
Tuesday, July 13th, 2010
That woman accused of trying to open the door of a WestJet plane in mid-flight near Winnipeg last week, has been denied bail. 47 year old Barbara Morton of St. John’s, Newfoundland will remain in jail until her trial is held. A publication ban on the hearing prevents the release of the reasons the judge denied letting her out.
4 horses have died and a female rider has been seriously injured during the first few days of the Calgary Stampede. A spokesperson for the Vancouver Humane Society says the animal deaths don’t surprise him, saying they’re part and parcel of what happens at rodeos.
It could be the beginning of the end of that massive Gulf oil leak. BP engineers have placed a new containment cap on the leaking undersea well, with a tighter fit. They hope it’ll prevent oil from gushing into the water like it’s been doing for nearly 3 months now. The solution though is only a temporary one.
Well there are many things that the engineers at Consumer Reports Magazine like about Apple’s latest i-Phone, but they say there are some flaws too. They say the i-Phone 4’s reception problems are enough to prevent them from recommending it to consumers. After it went on sale last month, buyers started complaining that holding the phone a certain way could cause calls to get dropped.
Yesterday, it was Jonathan Toews getting a community club and lake named after him. Today there’s word the city will be naming a park after Governor-General Michaelle Jean. The name change will take effect as soon as protocol officers in Ottawa determine whether it should be named “Governor-General Michaelle Jean Park,” or just “Michaelle Jean Park.” Either way Michaelle will be here on August 25th to see the unveiling.
A 43 year old Canadian man has been sentenced to 9 years in jail down in Los Angeles for using a lottery scam to cheat dozens of senior Americans out of 600 grand. Henry Anekwu, of Vancouver, was also ordered to pay about half a million dollars in restitution.
So, Roman Polanski is now free to go where he wants, as long as that is, there’s no extradition treaty with the U.S. Obviously, the top prosecutor down in Los Angeles is not happy about Switzerland’s decision yesterday not to extradite Polanski to the U.S. to face charges. Attorney Steve Cooley says if he ever steps foot in another country that has an extradition treaty with the U.S. he’s done.
And now, the sheriff’s involved. That taped phone call with Mel Gibson allegedly acknowledging he hit the mother of his 8 month old daughter, will be part of an investigation by the L.A. Sheriff’s department. A spokesperson says investigators are currently evaluating the recordings, and once detectives are finished their work, the case will be turned over to the D.A.’s office, which will decide whether or not to pursue criminal charges against Gibson.
Monday, July 12th, 2010
Well, no surprise here….Jonathan Toews got a hero’s welcome as he brought the Stanley Cup to Winnipeg yesterday. Hundreds of people turned out at city hall to cheer the Chicago Black Hawks captain as he lifted the cup and kissed it. The 22 year old was given the key to the city, and also had a lake named after him. Toews says it was all pretty overwhelming. The hockey player has had quite the year…winning the Olympic gold medal with the Canadians men’s team, winning the Stanley Cup and winning the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP.
Some residents of Manitoba are having too much one wheeled fun. Olympic Cycle and Ski here in the city says they’ve sold 30 unicycles over the past 12 months. That’s double what they sold last year.
The Swiss government says it’ll make an announcement this morning about Roman Polanski’s possible extradition to the U.S. The Oscar winning director has been held in Switzerland since last September following an extradition request from American authorities. Back in 1978, Polanski fled the States before he was to be sentenced for raping a 13 year old girl.
BP says it’ll be a few days before it knows whether or not it’s succeeded in capping that well responsible for all the oil in the Gulf of Mexico. The company says if all goes according to plan, almost all of the oil spewing from the well will be captured and pumped aboard tankers on the surface. The well began gushing oil almost 12 weeks ago now.
A Canadian was among the 3 people injured this morning in Pamplona, Spain during the annual running of the bulls festival. Fortunately, none of the victims were gored, and all were treated in hospital and released.
In a move to try and improve consumer confidence, Toyota is inviting 4 outside experts to help beef up quality control at the world’s biggest automaker. In the past few months, Toyota’s reputation for quality has been hammered by the recall of more than 8 million of its vehicles worldwide.
At the weekend box office, it was new family cartoon that took top spot. Despicable Me came in at number 1, with a 61 million dollar take. The new Twilight Saga, Eclipse held on for 2nd. And Predators, the re-make of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s original flick, came in 3rd.
And who knew? A 48 year old single mother of two is now the sole title holder of Miss Cougar Canada. Alison Brown, beat out several other contestants this weekend at a pageant in Toronto this weekend…all part of the Canadian Cougar Convention. Along with braggin right’s, Alison will now get to attend International Cougar Week in Jamaica next year.
Friday, July 9th, 2010
Well, Winnipeg has retained its championship belt as the Slurpee capital of the world…..out-slurping places like Calgary and Detroit. Our city claims the title for the 11th year in a row based on having the highest average number of slurpee cups sold per store. To celebrate this great honor, the Slurpee Cup will be awarded to fans tonight at the Bomber game at Canad Inns stadium.
One of 2 men wanted on country wide warrants in a violent home invasion in the city, has now been arrested. Police say 3 armed men forced their way inside a home back in June of 2009, and assaulted a 22 year old male. 26 year old Joel Geddes was arrested in Swift Current on July 2nd. And cops are still looking for 26 year old Shane Ferguson of Winnipeg. But they say if you see him, don’t approach him, as he is considered very dangerous.
Changes to the federal boater licensing program aim to plug holes that could put some unsavvy captains at the helm. Starting in September, boaters angling for their mandatory pleasure craft operator card, will have to read through an online training manual, and show that they’ve actually read it and understood it. In fact, they won’t be able to take the test until they’ve read everything. As well, boaters will now have more to answer to, as the number of question’s on the test is going up as well.
Canadians will find out tonight, who will succeed Lloyd Robertson in the anchor chair on CTV’s national newscast. The 76 year old newsman announced on last night’s national news that he plans on retiring as the network’s chief anchor.
Just hours after pleading guilty in New York to conspiracy and ordered deported, 10 Russian spies are now on their way home to Moscow. In exchange, Moscow has pardoned 4 people who spied for the West, and will send them back to the States.
Yesterday, the province announced that they’re gonna help pay for 4 new fire paramedic stations in the city. That means they’ll shell out just over 2 million dollars towards construction of the 4 stations.
The bad news? The number of west nile carrying mosquito’s has jumped up big time. The good news? So far, there are no cases of the virus in our province. Yesterday, Manitoba Health released its weekly report on West Nile, which said there are still no human cases but trap counts for the culex tarsalis mosquito which carries the virus, have exploded. By the way, the south-central part of the Manitoba had by far the highest number of the bad little bugs.
Thursday, July 8th, 2010
Well talk about an honor ! He’s got a gold medal already and a Stanley Cup. Now Winnipeg’s Jonathan Toews is going to get his own lake. When the hockey hero is back in the city this Sunday, the province has decided to name a northern Manitoba lake after Toews at a special ceremony at the Leg. Toews Lake, as it will be called, is located north of Flin Flon.
A WestJet flight had to make an emergency landing in the city this week, after a passenger tried unsuccessfully to open a cabin door while in the skies over the Prairies. Police say the flight took off from Calgary on Tuesday and was bound for Halifax. But, about an hour into the flight, a woman went over to one of the door hatches, started pulling it, saying she needed to get off. Well thanks to the flight crew and some passengers, the woman was restrained until the plane made an emergency stop here in the city. 47 year old Barbara Morton of St. John’s Newfoundland, is now charged with assault, mischief and endangering the safety of an aircraft.
A new Governor General has apparently been selected by Prime Minister Harper. Reports say the next person to assume the role Michaelle Jean has held for the last 5 years, will be University of Waterloo President David Johnston.
Members of the Dairy Farmers of Canada will have their work cut out for them later this morning. Despite an on going heat wave in Toronto, the group will try to break a Guiness World Record today for the world’s largest smoothie. They’ll be mixing Canadian blueberries, yogurt, honey and Canadian milk into the largest smoothie ever made.
Well in another running of the bulls in Pamplona Spain yesterday…..it was far from an injury free event. 2 people got gored, one in the chest, the other in the leg, and at least 4 others were injured in falls.
Prime Minister Harper is about to punch out. He’ll tour flood ravaged parts of Saskatchewan today and soon after, will begin his vacation. He’ll fly to Alberta first to visit family and take in the Calgary Stampede. Then, he and his family will head to Harrington Lake, Quebec, which is the PM’s official country residence northwest of Ottawa.
Uh, can you say major mix up? A young Italian couple is hoping to fly out of Cape Breton today after a travel mix up landed them there instead of the land Down Under. Their travel agency mistakenly sent the pair to Sydney, Nova Scotia instead of Sydney, Australia. The 2 said they thought it was a joke when they landed on Cape Breton island on Tuesday night, but quickly realized it wasn’t. But their stay wasn’t all bad, an Italian speaking resident showed them the sights, they got a free hotel room, and they enjoyed their first ever lobster dinner.
Do Not Call apparently means, Do Not Pay ! Residents who signed up for the do not call registry to stop those annoying calls from telemarketers, might be surprised to know that most of the companies who’ve been charged with violating the registry, haven’t paid their fines. The feds started the list back in 2008, and since then 22 companies have been fined for ignoring it. But so far, only 4 have paid up on the fines they were given.