Professor Birdsong

Weird Criminal Law Stories # 447: “A Real Shed of Doubt”

NEBRASKA: A politician with a real shed of doubt… Retired Army Col. Tom Brewer, who is running for a seat in the state legislature, was accused of listing a phony address – a machine shed – while actually living in another district 400 miles away. So Brewer scheduled an open house to show off the renovated shed, which he says has bedrooms, bathrooms, and a kitchen. Secretary of State John Gale said the complaint was filed too late anyway, so Brewer will be allowed to run for the district 43 seat.   NEW HAMPSHIRE: What a doll!  Police officers in the town of Keen broke into a locked car to save a baby from the brutal summer heat – unfortunately,
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Weird Criminal Law Stories # 446: Praise the Lord and Pass the Bible!

ALABAMA: Praise the Lord and pass the Bible! A jail guard has been charged with trying to smuggle drugs inside a Bible. Kenneth Lawson, 32, of Florence was arrested recently during a shift change when fellow officers found the prescription narcotic Suboxone hidden inside his bible, according to a report by the county sheriff. Lawson was also found with tobacco and was charged with trying to bring contraband into the Lauderdale County jail. Lawson had been working at the jail for only three months at the time of his arrest.   FLORIDA: There’s always room for one more…. Florida sheriff deputies loading prisoners into a transport van didn’t have to work very hard to find one more customer after a
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Weird Criminal Law Stories # 445: India, Oh India, Gosh!!!

INDIA: Kite string throat cuttings mishaps kill 3! A report out of New Delhi reveals that three people, including two children died after their throats were slashed by glass-coated kite string used in competitions to bring down kites of rivals.  A girl, 3, riding with her parents in a car had her head out of the sunroof when her throat was cut by the string. The other victims were a 4-year-old boy who was also looking out of the sunroof of a car, and a man, who fell off a motor bike after his throat was cut by string that became tangle around his neck. The deaths occurred in August, 2016 during India’s Independence Day, when many people fly kits
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Weird Criminal Law # 444: Only in Florida Folks!!!

FLORIDA: Crystal meth donut frosting, maybe??? A Florida man is accusing police of wrongful arrest, claiming police arrested him after mistaking donut frosting for crystal meth. Dan Rushing, 64, of Orlando said he gave police permission to search his car after they stopped him for running through a stop sign. “They said, ‘We found what we thought was crack cocaine in the beginning, but now think it’s methamphetamine,’” he recalled. The meth turned out to be nothing more than Krispy Kreme. “Every Wednesday I stop at Krispy Kreme and get a donut there” he said. “And they found four little flakes of the icing.” Court records reveal that Rushing was charged with possession of meth in the traffic stop. But
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Weird Criminal Law Stories # 443: Pig Heads???

HUNGARY: Pig heads?? A Hungarian member of the European parliament whipped up controversy in mid-August, 2016 by suggesting that displaying pig heads on a border fence would be an effective way to scare Muslim immigrants from entering the EU-member country. Gyorgy Schopflin made the suggestion in response to local putting up carved root-vegetable, human-like masks at the border.   ILLINOIS: The headline read, “Bloody sundae.” One summer day a Chicago bandit robbed an ice-cream truck with an assault rifle. It is reported that the thief pulled the weapon, demanded cash and the keys to the truck and fled in the vehicle. No arrest has been made. JAPAN: The headline called it the “Seat of Dreams.” A shopper who fell asleep
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Weird Criminal Law # 442: Mommy what’s a Bim Bim?

BURKINA FASO: Just how big were their Bim Bims? We learn that this western African nation recently banned an annual beauty contest for women with the biggest rear-ends. The last weekend in August of 2016, would have been the third annual Miss Bim Bim pageant before government officials cancelled it for being too sexist and degrading. “Our role is to do everything to avoid damaging the image of our women,” said Minister Laure Zongo.   CALIFORNIA: Flaming Poo, maybe? Vandals lit portable toilets on fire at San Francisco’s China Basin Beach, causing a big flaming mess. “It was a pretty big fire. Flames were lighting up the place,” a nearby neighbor said. Fortunately no one was injured but the vandals
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P15-(2)Professor Birdsong received his J.D. from the Harvard Law School and his B.A. from Howard University. He teaches law in Orlando, Florida. After graduation from law school he worked several years with a large law firm. He then entered into a varied and distinguished career in government service. First serving as a diplomat with the State Department with various postings in Nigeria, Germany and the Bahamas. Professor Birdsong later served as a federal prosecutor. After leaving government service, Professor Birdsong was in private law practice. He has done on-air radio and TV legal analysis work for Fox News, CNN, Court TV and BET TV News. Currently, Professor Birdsong is occasionally invited to appear as a legal commentator on Fox Radio News, CBS Radio and MSNBC.

Aside from writing scholarly papers on law and humor books on criminal law, Professor Birdsong loves to play piano, cycle, swim and every other year, he enjoys walking the streets of Paris with his lovely wife.

Although he has been involved in serious criminal law work over the years as a prosecutor, a defense attorney, and a law professor, Professor Birdsong knows that it is good to stayed grounded. This means often taking time to look at the many funny and weird criminal law stories that crop up around the United States and the world. He believes we should not always take criminal law so seriously and instead, just have a good laugh at some of the silly foibles of dumb criminals and their crimes. That is why several years ago he began to collect and edit from the wire services and news the type of weird and funny criminal law stories that appear in this volume.

Professor Birdsong hopes that you will get a few good laughs or at least, some chuckles from his collection of weird criminal law stories and his “snarky” commentary accompanying each of them.

View Birdsong’s Collection of books