Here’s another candidate for the Comical Case Names page: People v. Black in Color Leather Vest With Attached Outlaws Motorcycle Club Patches, decided earlier this year in Illinois. After four of the Outlaws pleaded guilty to assault (they beat up patrons of the “Lizard Lounge”), the State argued they should have to forfeit the vests and patches on the grounds the property had been used “directly or indirectly to facilitate street-gang activity.” The court held that the vest/patch combo had indeed “facilitated” the said activity because it helped gang members intimidate others.
That’s great news, of course, because without those vests and patches the gang will be unable to intimidate anyone ever again. So, well worth the effort, State of Illinois. Good work.
Coincidentally, the events underlying People v. Black Leather Vests took place near McHenry, Illinois, which appeared here way back in 2006 after it banned the use of costumed business mascots. More importantly, the town turned out to have a remarkably comprehensive definition of “buttocks” in its city code.
To his disappointment, Gylve Nagell was elected to the town council in Kolbotn, Norway, despite—or more likely because of—a campaign that asked voters not to elect him. Nagell (better known as Fenriz), a founding member of the black-metal band Darkthrone (better known as Black Death), said he had reluctantly agreed to run when his party asked, “thinking I would be like 18th on the [ballot] and I wouldn’t really have to do anything.” Concerned he might win anyway, Fenriz later put up posters featuring himself and his cat, asking not to be elected. He won, of course. “I’m not too pleased about it,” he reiterated.
Is it a bank robbery if you don’t intend to get away with it? Well, Kansas defines robbery as “knowingly taking property from the person or presence of another by force or threat of bodily harm,” so the answer could be yes. Which means Lawrence Ripple may get his wish. He gave a threatening note to a bank teller, received about $3,000, and then sat down to wait for police. Ripple reportedly told investigators that he and his wife had argued and that he now preferred jail to living with her. But wouldn’t releasing him be the appropriate punishment?