Crazy, Sick Crime

Living in the basement, the 29-year-old mother with a child-like mind and another baby on the way had little more than a thin rug and a mattress to call her own on the chilly concrete floor. Dorothy Dixon ate what she could forage from the refrigerator upstairs, where housemates used her for target practice with BBs, burned her with a glue gun and doused her with scalding liquid that peeled away her skin. They torched what few clothes she had, so she walked around naked. They often pummeled her with an aluminum bat or metal handle.

Dixon — six months pregnant — died after weeks of abuse. Police have charged two adults, three teenagers and a 12-year-old boy with murder in the case that has repulsed many in this Mississippi River town. Investigators put much of the blame on Michelle Riley, 35, who they said befriended Dixon but pocketed monthly Social Security checks she got because of her developmental delays.

Dixon saw little, if any, of the money, Hayes said. For months she weathered the torment to keep a roof over her head and that of her year-old son, who weighed just 15 pounds when taken into state custody after his mom’s death. Riley, 43-year-old Judy Woods and three teenagers, including Riley’s 15-year-old daughter, LeShelle McBride, are charged with first-degree murder, aggravated and heinous battery, intentional homicide of an unborn child, and unlawful restraint. Riley’s 12-year-old son is charged as a juvenile.

Riley, her daughter, Woods and 16-year-old Benny Wilson have public defenders who did not immediately return messages for comment. An 18-year-old defendant, Michael Elliott, planned to get his own attorney, court records show. All remain in jail on $1 million bond. Messages left with a Chicago-area sister of Dixon went unreturned, but neighbors, Hayes and newspaper accounts offer a mosaic of the months leading to Dixon’s demise inside the small, white, blue-shuttered house.

Riley and Dixon, police said, had lived in Quincy, a Mississippi River town about 100 miles north of St. Louis, Mo. Quincy is where Riley worked as a coordinator for a regional center that helps the developmentally disabled with housing and other services. Dixon was a client.

For years, an impoverished Riley struggled raising her children. Her use of methamphetamine and cocaine brought drug convictions in 2002 and 2004. But with treatment and housing help from the Quincy YWCA, Riley put her life in order — so much that in February of last year, the Quincy Herald-Whig did a story on her comeback.

Last summer, Dixon and Riley moved into the $800-a-month, three-bedroom rental in Alton about 15 miles north of St. Louis. From the start, neighbors Chad Hudson and Terri Brandt considered Riley trouble. Riley considered Dixon her slave, making her rub Riley’s feet until Riley fell asleep and forcing her to run naked around the house when she got in trouble, the neighbors said.
While doing fix-ups on the home last fall, landlord Steve Atkins saw Riley “barking orders” at the children and everyone else. Atkins joked to her whether he needed to call the Army and see if they wanted their drill sergeant back. Atkins said Dixon generally kept to herself “but was always nice when she spoke to you.” He saw no hints she’d been suffering or tortured.
Police said Dixon was allowed out of the house but didn’t say under what conditions. Hayes didn’t know who the father of Dixon’s fetus is. Hayes said things apparently came to a head Jan. 30, when investigators believe that Woods, during a dispute, beat Dixon on the head with an object Hayes wouldn’t identify. The next day Woods found her dead.

Hayes watched the autopsy and found her injuries disturbing. X-rays revealed roughly 30 BBs lodged in her. Deep-tissue burns covered about one-third of her body — her face, her chest, her arms and feet — and left her severely dehydrated. Her face and body showed signs of prolonged abuse. Many of her wounds were infected.

None of the injuries, Hayes said, proved singly fatal to Dixon. Her system already was taxed by her unborn baby. The disguting things humans are capable of never cease to amaze me.  I hope these assholes rot in hell.

4 Hairs for $17,000!

It probably is not even really George Washington’s hair – but it still sold for $17,000.  Four strands reportedly clipped from the first president were sold at auction Friday night to a Richmond man who declined to give his name. Colorado resident Christa Allen said her father, a Philadelphia lawyer, had given her the hair, which was pressed under glass in a locket and accompanied by a watch.

Allen told potential buyers that the hair had been handed down since it was clipped from Washington’s head. The Historical Society of Montgomery County, Pa., inspected Allen’s evidence and gave her its backing.

Jamie Bates, owner of Thompson & Riley, which auctioned the hair, had hoped it would bring at least $75,000.  “I’ve never sold George Washington’s hair before; I don’t know,” Bates said before the auction.  The hair is believed to have been snipped from Washington when he was briefly disinterred in 1837.  I wonder if they can do a DNA test on it?

Toys Today are a Little GROSS!

body parts

No wonder kids today are so messed up.  I found this at my local Walmart.  The severed tongue is my favorite.  But these folks must know what they are doing because my 11 year old was very excited when he saw this and kept telling me to take a picture of it already so he could open it up.

Update:  The severed tongue is really gooey and if you throw it on the wall it sticks!!  All the items smell like paint thinner so I am guessing these will be recalled shortly because little kids will be puking and getting high.  Rush out now to get your own “Body Parts” as I am sure these will be on Ebay for $100 a bag soon!

Get the Poor In-Shape

In a move to improve the health of the poor, a Salvation Army Gateway shelter will soon be glowing with lights using pedal power from old exercise bikes.

The WeloBike project launches Feb. 12 at the Jarvis St. shelter and volunteers are needed to come in and pedal away for at least 30 minutes at a stretch.  That energy will be stored in an attached battery pack and used to light up the rooms.

The initiative makes people aware of the work that goes into electricity production and how more energy efficient LEDs and Tungsten halogens are compared to regular light bulbs.

It also helps people lose a few pounds while they’re at it.   That’s right the poor should work for their money and their electricity.

Where did my testicles go? Thank Cloned Food!

It has been rumored that eating cloned meat, particularly beef can shrink the size of a males testes.  Doctors in Singapore have reported that if there is high doses of hormones used to facilitate the cloning process those same hormones could play havok with a males reproductive system.  One of the side-effects could be extenstive testicle shrinkage.

As seen last year in an interesting report on testicle shrinkage in polar bears as a result of polution we can expect to see similar problems if cloned foods are pumped with antibiotics and hormones.  I for one and not too eager to munch on any of this cloned food, are you?

The scientists found the higher the level of organohalogens in polar bear, the smaller testicle and baculum size and weight likely were. Ovary size and weight decreased as organohalogen levels rose as well.

Tattoo or Gun-Fight?

Getting a tattoo turned into a very, very painful experience, but usually it’s just the needle you have to worry about. Two men trying to trace a loaded .357-caliber Magnum as a pattern for a tattoo accidentally shot themselves.  Robert Glasser and Joey Acosta, both 22, were treated at a hospital in El Paso, Texas, after the shooting Thursday evening in nearby Chaparral. Authorities said Glasser was struck in the hand when the gun accidentally went off, and Acosta was hit in the left arm. Their injuries were not life-threatening, authorities said.  But sometimes the embarassment feels like it can kill you.

Playing with toys pays off

Playing with toys really paid off for Ian Culhane, he won $10,000 for designing a seven-foot-tall toy roller-coaster. Not bad for a 10-year-old.  Ian’s creation was on display at the Toys “R” Us store in Times Square, where he accepted the prize from the president of K’NEX Brands, a building toy company in Hatfield, Pa.

The boy, who first started playing with building sets when he was four, was one of thousands of children ages 6 to 12 who entered the annual contest.  Ian began the project last summer, using 6,000 plastic parts from his collection of 15,000 to assemble the roller-coaster, which runs through the body of a dragon.  Two months ago, his parents packed it up and shipped it off for the contest. Just recently, his parents told him he won.

A panel of judges comprised of K’NEX employees selected semifinalists based on the creativity, uniqueness and detail of the projects. It had to be made exclusively from K’NEX parts.  An online vote determined 10 winners and Joel Glickman, an inventor with the toy company, chose Ian as the grand prize winner. The nine others each won $1,000 savings bonds.

In New York for the first time, Ian, his 14-year-old sister and their parents stayed at a hotel he called “pretty fancy for us. We always stay at a Motel 6.”  While he was disappointed he couldn’t spend any of the prize money, his father, a hydrogeologist, gave him $100 to spend at a toy store.

What will he buy?   Beer and wings?  No more toys of course!