Weird News: Phone-photo of spider saves man's life

Richard A Whitenight rum.runner at JUNO.COM
Tue May 3 08:38:39 MDT 2005


Phone-photo of spider saves man's life

BRIDGWATER, England (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A British
chef saved his own life by snapping a cell phone picture of a spider that
bit him.

Matthew Stevens, 23, was bitten in the kitchen of a Bridgwater pub when
he grabbed a dish cloth. When he reached for the 5-inch spider, it bit
him again and he flung it into the freezer. He then used his mobile phone
to take a picture of it, The Times of London said Wednesday.

He went to the hospital with a massively swollen hand and dizziness, but
was sent home to rest. Soon after, his girlfriend called an ambulance and
he was admitted. He told the doctors about his picture, which they then
sent to experts at the Bristol Zoo.

They identified it as a Brazilian Wandering Spider, or phoneutria fera,
with venom glands containing enough poison to kill 225 mice. It likely
had arrived in a box of bananas, officials said.

Health inspectors later captured the spider, which was still in the pub's
kitchen.

----

Finger-finding woman ready for legal fight

LAS VEGAS (UPI) -- The Las Vegas woman arrested on charges of planting a
severed finger in a bowl of Wendy's chili says she is eager to clear her
name in court.

Anna Ayala, 39, made her first appearance in Las Vegas Justice Court
Tuesday flanked by attorney Rick Ehler. She waived extradition to San
Jose, Calif., and Ehler said it was possible she would return to
California later this week, the San Francisco Chronicle reported
Wednesday.

"She has nothing to hide," Ehler said. "She wants to face the charges
head-on in order to seek vindication."

Ayala was arrested on suspicion of grand theft relating to the millions
of dollars in business Wendy's lost due to her claim of finding a
1.5-inch finger in her chili March 22.

Prosecutors have depicted Ayala as a swindler who has filed several civil
claims in recent years, seeking cash settlements.

Ayala is jailed without bail in Nevada, and will be held on a $500,000
bond warrant when she returns to San Jose.

Wendy's officials are offering a $100,000 reward for information
explaining how the finger came to be in the chili.

----

If he's not dead, man faces murder charges

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (UPI) -- Missouri prosecutors have filed four murder
charges against a man from El Salvador that they're not convinced is
dead, the Kansas City Star reports.

The case centers around Othmaro Orellana, who was a prime suspect in the
machete murders of his estranged wife, their two children and his wife's
brother last April. Kansas City police found the bodies in their home,
but there was no sign of then-25-year-old Orellana until this month.

Jackson County Prosecutor Mike Sanders said Salvadoran police reported
finding Orellana's body and sent fingerprint evidence, but not DNA or
other proof. Investigators in El Salvador said they found a note signed
by Orellana by the body, saying he was sorry for what he did to his
family.

However, fingerprints can also be made by the living and Sanders said the
charges were filed in the event Orellana faked his own death.


Copyright 2005 by United Press International.
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